We’ve shopped from Indian brands before it became cool. Is this part humble brag? Yes. But, the point is - we’ve done our homework and research, checked if products from these brands last the test of time, dry cleaning and Indian summer, before sharing our picks. Whether your incentive is to #shoplocal, or you’re in your early 30s and sick of wasting money on clothes that don’t last, or you’re looking to shop more sustainably, this list is for you, with the best of the best. These brands have been bought, tried and tested by us. So rest assured, the recommendations are legit.
9 Luxe Fashion Brands That Are *Actually* Worth The Money
The Summer House is a slow fashion brand whose core values are based on sustainability, quality and fine craftsmanship. Working with local artisans that beautifully weave traditional fabrics and techniques with modern silhouettes, their clothing is timeless and lasts the test of time, and is washing machine friendly. We also love their partnership with ReLove where you can buy/sell second-hand products from Summer House.
Recommend Them For: Cotton Tops, Dresses, Swimsuits
Things They Can Improve On: Actually…nothing. We love their fabrics and cuts (more androgynous and loose fits), and love that they’ve got a good mix of prints, patterns and solids. And most importantly, their clothes actually last.
One look at November Noon’s collection will tell you that their clothes are wearable art. Another brand that works with local artisans, imbibing indigenous knowledge of textiles – all their clothes are created after much deliberation and thought. Working with a variety of silks, cotton and linen, their collection mostly features relaxed fits making it all super comfortable. Brownie points for great packaging too.
Recommend Them For: Oversized silk shirt which is super in these days.
Things They Can Improve On: Delivery communications! It took us dropping them 2 emails, 2 messages on Instagram and then commenting on a post to finally get a response from them.
Longtime IG (and celeb) favourite, Lovebirds fashion week show was all over the internet. Their latest collection is androgynous and features prints and patterns that are functional and timeless, but playful enough to catch the eye. Their clothing is perfect for work or play if you ask us. What makes them stand out to us is how well their clean designs and smart proportions complement all body shapes and sizes while still being relaxed. They’ve recently launched accessories (bags) and earrings that follow similar design principles.
Recommend Them For: Dresses
Things They Can Improve On: Is it us, or do their prices seem to go up with every passing season?
Along with Summer House, NN is probably one of the OG sustainability focussed brands. Everything is crafted from 100% organic cotton, and they're a carbon-negative brand too. Their apparel collection for women by women ranges from shirts and tees, to gunjees and dresses. If you want the basics, they’re your best bet.
Recommend Them For: Dresses, straight fit and oversized women’s shirts, cloth bag
Things They Can Improve On: We wish they had more prints and colours in their collections. Apart from that, they’re ace for solid basics
The newest kid on the block, Shop Drawn has caught influencer attention thanks to their oversized shirts and flowy dresses, all ideal for a balmy desi summer. Their MO is small-batch productions (no reruns), and you have to pre-order to get your (almost) exclusive piece! They commission designs from artists, so if you manage to get a shirt, it’s basically wearable, art - a statement piece.
Recommend Them For: Oversized shirts fit well without seeming too boxy
Things They Can Improve On: While we love their prints and patterns, we personally didn’t quite like the fabric (felt very polyester/stiff) for their shirts. And given the price they retail at, we hope they switch up their fabrics.
Saaksha & Kinni
Possibly 2019-2020’s breakout brand (and also on LBB’s Top Emerging Brand List), there isn’t a single celebrity or Instagram star who hasn’t been spotted in their dresses and shirts. We’ve shopped their shirts, and absolutely love the fit, the bright prints, and how luxe you feel in the outfit. They’re also pretty easy to wash and take care of, and surprisingly don’t crinkle easily.
Recommend Them For: Shirts and dresses (if you’re looking for something fancy, and some options perfectly channel resort vibes).
Things They Can Improve On: Maybe it was a slowdown during COVID (when we placed an order), but we got our shirt in a legal envelope 😂 All up for reducing packaging waste. But an INR 5,000 shirt in a legal envelope was…interesting to say the least.
If you’re into Indian fashion, then the Jodi Life needs no introduction. Their clothing features vibrant prints and colours, that are done by hand. Blending contemporary sensibilities and traditional techniques beautifully, their clothing is both loud and breezy in the best way. Their silk dresses are luxurious as they are light, and if you’ve been looking for a statement piece you’ve got it here.
Recommend Them For: Dresses, silk clothing.
Things They Can Improve On: We think their dresses are exponentially better than their shirts. Don’t get us wrong- the prints and patterns are beautiful, but we’re not big fans of the fit of their shirts- apart from this white one worn by Karishma Kapoor recently.
Pro-Tip: They also have a ReLove section where you can buy and sell pre-loved clothing from their collection(s).
We love O Frida for their bold use of colour, and super relaxed fits. Though their collection of clothing is limited it’s of stellar quality. They do a great job of creating striking clothing with simple silhouettes by playing with prints, patterns and textures. Even their solid coloured clothing manages to look great. Their clothing is definitely worth the price during sales.
Recommend Them For: Oversized shirts, co-ords, tops & dresses
Another new kid on the block, Malie’s very Scandinavian/Copenhagen styles remind us of Cecilie Bahnsen’s dresses. That shouldn’t be surprising since Amalie (one half of Malie) is from Denmark. Their tiered tops and dresses, and easy silhouettes have been a big hit among fashionistas. Their clothing feels expensive and is comfortable too. Their packaging is great and they’re quick to respond to queries on IG too, winning brownie points from us! We personally love their black tiered top super versatile and goes with everything.
Recommend Them For: Tiered dresses
Things They Can Improve On: Their collection is limited (and often sell out fast), and we wish they had more variety.
Shout Outs To These Brands
A few others we’ll give a shout out to- Payal Pratap’s super well-fitting cotton tops, Raw Mango and Akaaro’s limited collection of shirts and handloom silk dresses.