Asa Kazingmei: The Humbling Journey of a Non-conformist Naga Fashion Designer

Three years ago, I remember my Facebook timeline hijacked by the designs of someone called ‘Asa Kazingmei‘ and his collection titled ‘Immortal‘. With much reluctance I checked the feeds only to find out he was among the 7 Gen Next designers who showcased at the Lakme Fashion Week!

Yes, in 2012, Asa Kazingmei wooed India with his striking debut Immortal Collection at Gen Next. In electrifying prints, astonishing wraps and cuts, an inspiration so deeply rooted in his culture and tradition, the nation was introduced to one of her exceptional designer that fall.

Asa Kazingmei 2012 Lakme Gen Next
Asa Kazingmei’s Debut Collection “Immortal”, LFW 2012 Winter/Festive

And that was just the beginning!

In 2014, Asa ruled the Lakme Fashion Week yet again with his “Changvei” collection, an inspiration he sought from a Naga Warrior’s shield. An eclectric collection, black dominated the costume where thick denim, leathers and rivets were used to emanate immense toughness.

Asa Kazingmei LFW 2014, Changvei Collection
Asa Kazingmei’s “CHANGVEI” collection, LFW 2014, Winter/Festive

Once again, Asa Kazingmei is all set to take the stage at Lakme Fashion Week 2016 on 3rd of April!

Themed as “REPTONIC”, the latest collection is nothing short of the glory. This time round, he has drawn his inspiration from little things that adds to the grandeur of an image, from fragments that are often ignored by us. In satin, lace, net, crystal and golden leather, watch out for surreal designs of long floating and textures silhouette. Here is a sneak peek:

What is admirable about this young designer is that, each time, he has always delivered a strikingly unique collection that are so surreal. The fact that his inspirations are drawn from his roots, everyday lives and mother nature, only increases my admiration for him.

But that’s not the only thing that is so great about Asa Kazingmei. It is his journey that is inspiring. Judging by his success, some people must’ve thought ‘Ah! His parents must be rich‘. You are not alone, that was my initial thought too! And we were so wrong about it!

Asa was born to a humble home in Lunghar Village, Ukhrul District, Manipur. The second born in a family of seven, parents who were modest cultivators, he had a very humble beginning.

Growing up, Asa was mostly interested in art rather than books. He found himself drawn to customizing his own costume. Martial Art was also one of his favorite art where he went on to become one of the youngest black-belt holder. Although not much of a talker, he was a performer as he won several medals in District and State level Karate competitions.

As weird as it may sound, it was during his tryst with Martial Arts that Asa developed his passion for designing clothes. As fate would put it, Asa’s Martial Art teacher had a sewing machine which gave Asa the chance to try to his hands at sewing. And observing how good he was at, Asa’s master inspired him to learn designing further.

Post his 10+2, he went to Mumbai in 2008 to pursue his passion. He joined INIFD for Fashion designing. Upon completion of the course, he worked for several designers, the notable one being as a Head Designer for Amber and Shirrin for 4 years.

Then in 2012, he finally got his big break. And the rest is history.

It is also worth mentioning that in 2015, Asa showcased his piece at an International Fashion Design Exhibition Fashion Exhibition in Slovenia ‘indentiteta‘, where designers from around the globe came to exhibit their design.

 International Fashion Design Exhibition Asa KAzingmei
Asa Kazingmei’s design at International Fashion Design Exhibition 2015

Asa Kazingmei has also been associated with bollywood movies and noted celebrities. He has worked with Ashley Robello for London Dream, Anaita Shroff for Bang Bang and the soon to be released Mirzya.

Hrithik Roshan, Salman Khan, Amir Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Varun Dhavan, Kajol and Katrina Kaif are some of the celebrities that have been donned in Asa Kazingmei Haute Couture.

His works have alone been featured in renowned magazines like VOGUE, ELLE, Women’s Era, GRAZIA, to name a few. To keep up with all his news, you can follow his page on facebook- Asa Kazingmei.

What we can learn from him: Asa Kazingmei has always stood out from the crowd because he didn’t conform to fad. He didn’t try to fit in, instead, he created his own trend. He celebrated in being different and that was what the world loved about him.

PS: Asa Kazingmei confesses that if not a designer, he would’ve been a kick boxing trainer !!  (Ladies! Ahem!)

- Advertisement -


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Read More