Major Padmaavat Reveal: Design duo Vipul Amar and Harsheen Arora of The V Renaissance share details on Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh’s warrior armoury

Psychological analysis of the characters and 300 years old leather techniques made up the Padmaavat wardrobe
New Delhi: Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor’s characters in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s megahit film Padmaavat have already left everyone spellbound. After making Sushant Singh Rajput look like a fitting warrior in Raabta, Delhi-based design house The V Renaissance has showcased their design proficiency once again in the Block-buster of the year. Designer duo Vipul Amar and psychologist Harsheen Arora combined their forces to create warrior costumes for Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in the movie.
 “They first approached us to create one look for Ranveer Singh’s earlier battles in the film. During this time we had just finished work on a bridal lehenga in leather, they liked the technique that we had employed in that piece, thus they also asked us to create the armour for Shahid Kapoor’s final battle. After Mr. Bhansali saw these armours he then asked us to create one for Khilji’s final battle as well,” says Vipul.
These armours are a result of back-breaking research not only in terms of their authenticity but also the functionality. The duo consulted an engineer to confirm the mechanics incorporated in the armours. “Authenticity and mobility of the armours was our prime concern as it is imperative that the actor is able to perform stunts in them. Hence, we carried out thorough research on the armouries and weaponries of the era around which the film revolves. We employed actual historical techniques to create the armours such as cuirboilli technique, sculpting, chiselling, inlaying to name a few, while making sure they align with today’s standards of comfort and weightlessness,” says Vipul.
Accompanying historical and functional research, the construction of the armours also comprises of Harsheen’s expertise of psychological analysis of the characters being portrayed by Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh as actors along with Mr. Bhansali’s vision of his characters. Ratan Singh is an embodiment of love and patriotism while Allaudin Khilji embodies conquest and invasion. Interestingly, even though the same materials have been used in their armours, they have been treated differently to depict their opposing personalities. Both the characters are so strong and contrasting that the challenges while designing for both cannot be compared. The techniques used in armours for both of them vary drastically. 
The concept of The V Renaissance as a brand is to create products which embody your personality, needs and desires; which we achieve using psychological interview as a medium be it interiors, furniture, apparel, wedding ensemble, trousseau, luggage, bags, costumes and more. We employed the same principle while designing the armours for the film. 
Harsheen says“Once I was able to understand Mr. Bhansali’s vision of Maharawal Ratan Singh,it helped in bringing elements to his armour that represent nobility and honour. Even the colours used for Shahid’s armour show just that. The blood red depicts honour, love, and eagerness to serve one’s land and the deep gold stands for courage, generosity and passion. Not only that, the design elements in Shahid Kapoor’s armour are inspired by the sun rays and the chest-plate is coloured like the Rajputana soil at different times of the day. Now if we see the details of the Armour for Maharawal Ratan Singh , the whole suit is a blend of shades of Rajputana Soil, shades of Gold , shades of Blood Maroon. A criss cross of geometrical design that sigifies purpose and direction which drives Rajput bravery. On the chest of the Armour lays an inlay work of Metal wire running on the leather bust, a mark of Valour. Vipul Amar being a cinematic person created the colour and wire pattern keeping in mind how the camera will see the armour as well. The principle of light and shadow has been the basis of designing these armours.”
On the other hand, Allaudin Khilji’s armour represents the Sultan that he envisioned himself as.
 “The leather lions on his shoulders show his strong-headedness. The lions have been chiselled and hammered to bring into form - as part of the technique which is also symbolic to Khilji’s conquest. Also, the darkness of the character has been enhanced by engraving reptile scales on the lion heads,” says Harsheen.
"The Khilji Armour is a larger than life magnanamus armour that has been created in multiple layers. Ranveer Singh’s character required an embodiment of pure evil and ruthlessness, to portray this the top layer as well as the inner vest of the Armour is engraved with Alligator Scales. The skirt of the armour comprises of thousands of Individual fish scales that were engraved and hand crafted from Italian leather and fixed with two pin size metal studs per scale.In addidtion to that each fish scale was individually coloured in different colours derived from natural elements.
The shoulder guard of the Khilji armour consists of 3 layers each. Each layer employed a different technique on leather with design elements inspired from the era. The top chest plate is made from another special kind of Italian Leather and an extensive process of engraving and sculpting has gone into it. The golden jewellery work on the armour is all hand finished in leather too.
An engineer was consulted to make the movements of the Armour functional and to create a domino effect to the whole look. The ergonomics were looked into with equal priority as the designs were looked into.
Our design studio for those 10 months homed every kind of mason and technician of highest accumen. This has been the experience of a lifetime."
 Even the storage of these costumes is one of a kind. When not in use, the armours rest on life-sized mannequins, which are then placed inside vintage closet trunks. These are no ordinary trunks since they are fitted with lights and wheels for easy transport when the armies are moving in caravans before settling at base camp. This simply adds to the authenticity of experiencing the armours.
About The V Renaissance: The V Renaissance redefines the concept of luxury with bespoke products designed to depict your persona in each creation be it Leather or other merchandise, which includes – interiors, furniture, leather jackets, wedding ensembles, bags and luggage, helmets, desk tools, apparels, costumes and more.
The V Renaissance designs bespoke luxury and soulful products for their clientele starting from scratch, taking into account the client’s personality and requirements. It is one of the most intriguing ventures put forward by a very uncommon group of visionaries – an artist and entrepreneur, Vipul Amar, a financial advisor – Gireesh S. Nair, and a psychologist – Harsheen K. Arora. They tailor make a product which reveals the innermost core of their patrons.
Profile- The V Renaissance
The V Renaissance is a company that designs bespoke luxury and soulful products for their clientele starting from scratch, taking into account the client’s personality and requirements. It is one of the most intriguing ventures put forward by a very uncommon group of visionaries – an artist and entrepreneur, Vipul Amar, a financial advisor – Gireesh S. Nair, and a psychologist – Harsheen K. Arora.
The brand started off by making photographic artwork on canvas. Vipul did a personalized photo-shoot while Harsheen brought out the inner self of the client through psychology. Eventually, the group has extended the same idea to other luxury products of leather merchandise, such as jackets, bags, luggage, lingerie, and furniture.
When asked how their leather products are different from the other brands existing in the market, Harsheen said, “We are absolutely true to the term ‘bespoke’. Being a professional psychologist, I can reach the depths of what our clients are actually looking for. We have one on one session with our clients to understand their personalities and their needs and we use this information to come up with a product built literally for their selves.
The process of building a bespoke leather product for their clients is one that takes time – often several months. It begins with the aforementioned interview in the presence of a photographer and a psychologist, who end up determining the particulars of the bag that the client wants to have built. Then, the two move on to build the sketch for the product which is subsequently presented to the client. Once the sketch is approved, a mock is built out of the design by their craftsman, which, after alteration, serves as the groundwork for the final product. According to Harsheen, the design process involves eight distinct phases – the Inspiration for sketching, the definition of the product, the allocation of resources from around the world, the building of the product in the workshop, the prototype, use of the prototype to point out flaws, planning for the final product, and production of the final product.
The innovation of the company’s products isn’t limited to just conventional leather materials. It also involves the design of novel leather products such as leather bikinis. When asked what gave them the inspiration for leather bikinis, Harsheen responded by saying that leather doesn’t have to be restricted to the winter months, and that leather bikinis can be paired with all sorts of different clothing options.
Prior to the V Renaissance, the trio was involved in a brand called Stupid Eye. In this venture, Vipul and Harsheen worked together as to give their clients the best photo-shoots. Harsheen says that the word “stupid” comes from stupere, be amazed or stunned. She eclectically quotes Jung and says that ‘stupidity is the mother of the wise’. As part of the Stupid Eye process, participants were first asked about how they see themselves, and what they envision themselves to be. Based on this, an in-depth session with the photographer and the psychologist is held, which results in the basis for the design of a frame. This is followed by a photo shoot that involves therapeutic intervention to allow the participants to express their uninhibited self. A second group of participants are made use of to facilitate the photo shoot. Harsheen says that the final photograph allows for a sense of self-actualization in the mind of the participants.
According to Harsheen, the change from Stupid Eye to The V Renaissance is a natural progression, after Stupid Eye taught them that their clients express their inner selves in many varying and different ways. The V Renaissance allows the trio to delve deeper into human expression to come up with products that define people for what they are and who they wish to be.
When asked about which people take interest in their products and services, Harsheen says “Our clientele is very niche; one of the biggest challenges was to spread the awareness of the brand to the right target audience.”  The V Renaissance believes that quality is the driving force and the most crucial aspect of their process of sketching, designing, and crafting their products. When asked about the USP of their brand, she reinforces the fact that it is a bespoke brand in the truest sense, and that it is conceptualized by a business analyst/photographer and a psychologist – That’s absolute Luxury!

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