“The pride of India”
Ritu Kumar is a person who
needs no introduction in fact
her work speaks out for
themselves. A little girl from
Amritsar who dreamed to be
successful completed her
basic academy in Amritsar, as
well as studied various things
from various parts of her
motherland. With the ability
of minute observation,
managed to gain interest in
various artistic forms of India.
• Mrs. Kumar became the first woman to
introduce the ‘boutique’ culture in India
under the brand name ‘Ritu’.
• Her work is constantly evolving within an
aesthetic which is sophisticated both in the
eastern and western sense
• Brand Ritu Kumar has been retailing in Europe
and India since 1970’s.
• She has fashion forward sub brand called
LABEL. and Ritu Kumar.
• “ In April 2002 she launched a fragrance name
"the tree of life
Ritu began with hand block printers and two tables in a
small village near Calcutta, and in the last 28 years,
Ritu’s team of dedicated workers have progressed to
produce some of the country’s most exquisite
garments and accessories in cotton, silk and leather.
These ranges embrace both traditional textile crafts
and the lineage of Indian design. Over the centuries,
traditional skills that had been lost have been
revitalized and this has enabled the craftsmen to
continue working in their own environment.
Ritu has pioneered the term ‘fashion’ in the Indian
context, and more importantly, has demonstrated
that hand made products can be as profitable and
even more glamorous than those made by machine
• Ritu Kumar’s forte is traditional Indian clothes that draw
heavily on the textile and embroidery heritage of India and
remains classics of their kind. But she evolved another style
for European buyer. Her Indo-West fusion wear has all the
trappings of block prints, embroidery and craft inputs on a
• Ritu has been designing the wardrobes comprising swim-
wear, evening wear, traditional Indian wear, casual wear,
formal evening gowns; of the winning three Miss India’s, for
their participation in the International beauty pageants
(Miss Universe, Miss World & Miss Asia pacific
• At least six of these, to mention a few; Manpreet Brar,
Ruchi Malhotra, Rani Jeyraj and recently Lara Dutta, have
won the award for the Most Outstanding Evening Gown in
• Ritu has opened many outlets all over India. Style icons as
late Princess Diana have patronized her outfits. Ritu Kumar
also launched her book ‘ Costumes and Textiles of Royal
India’ which is published by Christie’s, London.
• Born in Amritsar, November 11, 1944
• Citizenship: INDIAN
• Married, Two children.
• Post Graduate Diploma in Museology, 1967, Ashutosh
Museum, CalcuttaAssociate in Arts, 1966, Briarcliff College,
Westchester County, NY, USA
• Bachelor of Education. 1965, Lady Irwin College, New Delhi
• Bachelor of Science in Home Economics, 1964, Lady Irwin
• Intermediate in Science, 1960, Government College,
• Matriculation, 1958, Sacred Heart Convent, Amritsar
• Designer of Textiles and Garments
R & D in Design:
•Leather ready-mades and accessories using traditional techniques
– The collection “Karabagh” launched in 1994.
•Development of handloom weaving to suit ready to wear needs, in
Maheshwar, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Tamil Nadu.
•Revival of tie/dye in selected areas in Gujarat.
•Revival and change of end use of vegetable printing/painting and
dyeing techniques in Andhra Pradesh.
•Revival and change in end use of the printing techniques of
•Research into traditional design motifs to translate them from
traditional uses to leather and textiles.
•Development of a specialized printing unit at Balabhgarh
employing modern techniques of screen-printing.
•Continuing work on established lines, producing two collections a
year for national retail outlets in:
Traditional Zardozi, Kashida, Handblock prints, Ethnic embroideries
by machine and hand, Kantha
Membership of Governing / Executive bodies :
• All India Handloom Board at the Ministry of Textiles.
• Delhi Crafts Council, Delhi Chapter
• Divyachhaya “Save a Child” Trust, Calcutta / Delhi
Board of Governors :
• National Institute of Fashion Technology
“I believe in going deep into the roots of every
design to find out its relevance in the present
context. I also try and visualize whether a woman
would look elegant in my designs. It’s a lot of hard
work. But then this is a very competitive field and
unless you put in that extra effort you will tag far
behind.” — Ritu Kumar First City, Aug-99
An Interview –
Ritu KumarRitu Kumar (Began the boutique culture in
Mentors: Pupul Jayakar, Kamala Devi Chattopadhyay
Ambitions in life: To be able to continue the research
and revival work that has been started in the craft areas.
Challenges in the fields: To be constantly innovative and
understand the needs of a new generation without losing
the inherent thread of one's work or one's handwriting.
High point in career: The completion of my book The
Costumes and Textiles of Royal India and the tableau The
Tree Of Life, both of which reflected the textile richness
of this country.
Advise to aspirants: There are no shortcuts in any
profession. If the job is worth doing, it will take a lot of
sweat and endeavor. Be prepared to not create genius,
and hope something will evolve at the end.
Ritu Kumar – An
Ritu Kumar is indeed an
inspiration to me and many
other young aspiring designers.
Her research and work
motivates me to experiment and
explore various traditional art
works of my motherland which
surely stands apart from the
rest. Ritu Kumar is one of the
Indian Designer who represents
are country and promotes our
rich heritage on an international