For Warner Bros’ live-action film, “Tom & Jerry,” Aashni + Co was brought on board to dress cast members Chloe Moretz, Pallavi Sharda, and Colin Jost among others for the film’s lavish, Indian wedding scene. Being a part of the iconic movie version of the heritage animation has marked another milestone in the Aashni + Co journey. The privilege of being associated with this cult animation series – one that is the reason behind so many happy smiles for decades – is a moment of pride for the Aashni + Co team. For the filmmakers, having the leading South Asian high fashion and bridal couture destination on board for this wow factor scene was imperative.
Aashni + Co Founder and Creative Director, Aashni Anshul Doshi spoke to us about the experience and more.
DissDash: Talk to us about your journey. How did you get into fashion?
Aashni Anshul Doshi: Opening a luxury, multi-designer boutique stocking the top Indian designers in London wasn’t part of Plan A. I was formerly an editor for commercials and Assistant Director for feature films. I’m London-based but Bombay-born and my life initially revolved around the magic of the cinematic experience. So much so that I moved to London to study filmmaking at The National Film and Television School and MET Film school at the age of 22. Little did I know I was soon to be drawn into a different line of work, albeit one that would be just as aesthetically satisfying.
During my initial stay in London, I recognized a huge void of access to Indian design outside of India. My intrinsic interest in curating and creating kicked in and was quickly channeled into building Aashni + Co, a vehicle to introduce a wealth of Indian fashion talent, from heritage to new-gen designers, to London. An inherent passion for fashion, varied roles as a creative collaborator, interactions with like-minded people since the age of 18, culturally rich formative years in India, as well as travel experiences, have all played a vital role in writing my story. Ever since we launched Aashni + Co in London’s Notting Hill district in 2012, we have carved a niche as one of the UK and Europe’s most sought-after destinations for luxury Indian fashion, garnering attention from fashionistas and celebrities alike.
DissDash: What was your first thought when you were approached to work on such an iconic movie based on one of the biggest animated characters of all time?
Doshi: Being a small part of an iconic movie and knowing that it has the most celebrated characters of all time, I took it as an opportunity of a lifetime. I was absolutely thrilled to know that Aashni + Co. would be one of the firsts to win a gig in mainstream Hollywood. Amidst Covid, this career highlight is like a dose of positivity that is keeping me inspired.
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DissDash: How did you decide the look and which designers to put forward?
Doshi: The stylist had certain ideas in mind and we took it on from there. We scouted through a few books that envision Indian weddings in a fairytale narration to understand how it can leave a lasting impression when viewed in the sequence. We wanted every ensemble to look noteworthy in the colorful live-action montage.
DissDash: How did you start Aashni + Co?
Doshi: We founded Aashni + Co in the Autumn of 2012, pioneering a discerning edit in Indian high fashion. We created a beautiful concept store in the heart of London’s Notting Hill with an e-commerce site, establishing the Aashni + Co brand with the purpose of providing access to visionary designers of India for the residents of the United Kingdom and across Europe.
DissDash: When you first saw the movie what went through your head?
Doshi: The adrenaline rush literally gave me goosebumps when I was seeing the trailer and the Indian wedding scene came up. Even though I had my own vision of how it would turn out, you can grasp the actual glory only when you see it on-screen since it’s a live animation movie.
DissDash: What were some of the challenges you faced?
Doshi: Mastering the turnaround time was the trickiest part for us at Aashni + Co. The outfits were required in multiple quantities and delivering that needed to be done with a nifty flair.
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DissDash: Where do you get your inspiration from?
Doshi: For me, it’s my incredible surroundings. I feel inspired literally every time I get out of the house to go somewhere new or when I tune on to my weekly dose of podcasts, short but impactful conversations with like-minded people does it for me!
DissDash: What is the one thing that stood out in this project as opposed to the ones you have done before?
Doshi: This opportunity will certainly be punctuated as one of the top career highlights for me and Aashni + Co. While we have supplied outfits to celebrities across the globe before it was a first for us in mainstream Hollywood.
DissDash: What is lined up next for you?
Doshi: We’re looking forward to reopening on April 12th and find out! We are currently working on another movie however due to an NDA we are unable to reveal much at this stage.
Not competent enough to sit idle and stare as the world goes by, Pallavi is optimistic to a fault and believes in building her world on her own rather than depending on others to make things right.