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Sheena Sood is paying homage to her Indian heritage through her fashion label Abacaxi

Brooklyn-based designer, Sheena Sood, was inspired by her Indian heritage to create her label, Abacaxi, which features one of a kind kaleidoscopic colored garments.

Video transcript

[MUSIC PLAYING]

SHEENA SOOD: I think that with handmade garments, there's always a history behind it. In each one of my pieces, so many different. people have been involved. The garment already has a history. And sometimes, you can feel that. I'm Sheena Sood. I'm a textile designer and an artist. And my brand is called Abacaxi.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

My parents moved to the US from India, and I kind of grew up traveling a lot. We would go back to India to visit family every so often. Those trips ultimately led me to wanting to be a designer. I remember experiencing the stark difference in the way that people dress there versus where I grew up in the US-- the use of color, the sense of design. It informed a lot about my life and also my work as a designer.

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[MUSIC PLAYING]

Most often, I start with thinking about what fabrics and what textiles I want to use in each collection, and then I'll start sketching and thinking about the different outfits. My sense of color comes back to being exposed to traveling in India and the use of color in our culture. I love Indian maximalism and all of that saturation. It's so different. And that's really what inspires me too.

From the beginning of Abacaxi, sustainability was really always part of my process. We work with a regenerative cotton farm in India. Regenerative organic cotton, it's simply just the way that cotton was farmed in the ancient times. It really restores the land but also yields a better crop at the same time.

It's important for me to work with other people from my culture, other South Asians in my work, because you really don't see us that much. I'm really happy to be a part of that change.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

NIDHI SUNIL: I love seeing a South Asian person taking back a lot of design, aesthetic, as well as techniques that belong to us. I'm Nidhi Sunil, and I am a model. And I live in Brooklyn. A lot of production happens in India, and it's just really great to finally see girls like Sheena who are putting their resources into taking that narrative back. So that's really exciting.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

Abacaxi is named after the Portuguese word for pineapple. Pineapples are a beautiful symbol across several different cultures. It symbolizes joy and happiness. I hope that when people wear my clothes, they do feel that sense of contentment and joy and happiness.

[MUSIC PLAYING]