Fashion’s New Fundamentalists – Rutika Saraf

They found their calling blogging about their sense of fashion and lifestyle – and they’ve gone on to become some of the biggest influencers in the fashion market in South India today. RITZ features some of South India’s most popular fashion and lifestyle bloggers and finds out what exactly makes each one of them tick.


5,000 readers a month minimum

Instagram 3,400 followers

Facebook 950.

Do you feel South Indian bloggers are sidelined by top national designers and big-ticket international labels? And why is that?

No, I don’t think so. The concept of fashion and style blogging is still only gathering steam down south. With cross-promotions becoming one of the newest trends, I believe we need each other to have a greater reach pan-India. What really matters is the quality of your work done.


What do you feel bloggers from Mumbai or Delhi possess as advantages over their South Indian counterparts?

Firstly, South India is a bit more traditional in its approach. We still love our silks no matter the weather. The style that trends here is unique in comparison to the North. While the North follows a more casual approach, we look at using the traditional pieces to make our designs more Indo-western.

Secondly, with a large mix of upcoming and established designers in Mumbai and Delhi, youngsters look up to bloggers for styling tips and tricks. They are more open to experimenting too!


There is criticism that fashion and beauty bloggers are far more exposed and knowledgeable in the north than here. Comment.

Well, that depends on the kind of person you are. Knowledge is something you can gather. It doesn’t really matter which part of the country you come from. If a topic interests you, you will gain more information about it. On the topic of exposure, that will increase gradually when brands are willing to experiment with bloggers in the South.


How lucrative is blogging even as a part time hobby? 

It’s addictive because it taps into your creativity every moment and keeps you experimenting with your sense of style. And once you have figured out how it works, it can make money for you.


What are your future plans?

To be honest, the work that I currently am part of – fashion consulting, styling and blogging – was never really part of a plan. I don’t think too much about the future. I would, however, love to bring in new brands to untapped markets through pop-up shops or exclusive collections.

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Miroslava Duma has made a career out of her social media presence as the fashion blogger par excellence. Do you see some such figure emerging from India?

Quite a few, actually. I love MISU & Love and Other bugs. Nilu Thapa has a very edgy style as well!


How strongly are you influenced by Bollywood trends?

The trends in Bollywood are definitely inspirational, right from their elegance to the funk quotient. I never miss out on their airport looks simply because they influence my daily routine styles.


How do you understand what your readers/followers prefer or want?

With a large base following you, it is practically not possible to understand everything. I sketch out a look; I create it and experiment at times. A look that is not so disturbing to the eye but catchy too is what I usually aim for. Of course, I have my staples that I know will never fail. A lot depends on the photography too!


How do you keep yourself abreast of fashion trends, beauty trends etc.?

Apart from following a lot of fashion, beauty & lifestyle blogs & vlogs, I also keep track of trends carried on by the celebrities through celebrity blogs like HHC, Miss Malini, etc. Popxo shares a bunch of creative ideas suited for the younger generation.  It’s not about replicating a look but about deriving ideas and maintaining your originality and comfort.


Who are your favourite bloggers and what sites do you visit for on-trend info?

Wendy Nguyen, BryanBoy, Jessica Stein, MISU, LAOB, Rati Tehri Singh, Sherry Shroff, Nilu Thapa, Santushi Shetty – Just to name a few. Apart from these, I check out Style Bubble and High Heel Confidential quite often.

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In an age that encourages the most unconventional career choices, do you see blogging emerging as a viable career option?

Absolutely! In fact, it already has. Since blogging connects with viewers/readers on more personal level, they come back to it for their needs and requests. A personal touch goes a very long way.


Who are your favourite brands?

My all-time favorites are Chanel, Valentino, Chloe, Dior and YSL. I’m a huge fan of Manish Malhotra for his color palette, Payal Singhal & Anamika Khanna in apparels; Outhouse and Farah Khan Ali for creative jewellery. Right now I love Pero, The meraki project and Huemn.


What names are you most often seen wearing?

I swear by ZARA, Forever21 sometimes, Diesel and Michael Kors.