Forget Age, Forget Body Type: Wendell Rodricks' Goa Store Is Beautifully Inclusive
Nestled in Goa’s old heritage area of Campal, Wendell Rodricks Design Space is one of the most welcoming, all-embracing designer stores we’ve been to. Walk in here on your next Goa vacation and you’ll realise how you always needed that rare, wearable Wendell piece that actually belongs in your cupboard and not just on the ramp.
What Makes It Awesome
India’s only designer boutique to have an open bar, this space isn’t just a store; it’s an experience. When Stylewaali (Sunieta Narayana) and I walked in, it was as if we were stepping into Wendell’s life and indulgently following his journey as a designer. From the books he’s penned to photos of Malaika Arora, his long-time muse and messages from his fiercest fans from the industry… All we needed to do was linger (hopefully with a glass of wine the next time) and let the clothes call out to us.
The studio, inside an old Goan-Portuguese home, is as languid as his designs and you’ll often find yourself drifting seamlessly through the rooms. It’s hard to tell when you’ve left the Silk Room and entered the Eco-Goa room but you know that the vibe has changed; from luscious silk cholis and elegant dresses, you’re now being treated to racks of subtle handlooms complete with a version of the classic kunbi sari created by local weavers in Goa. Natural fibres, natural dyes and an eco-chic vibe inhabits the Eco-Goa room that stands in visual contrast to the Linen Room that’s all flamboyant with peppy colours.
Sure enough, his signature whites are timeless and classic but if you think they're also the most popular, you might be in for a surprise. It’s actually his menswear that flies off the shelves because it’s one of those few things that hasn’t changed to follow ‘trends’. It’s here that the old-timers still find shirts in easy, regular silhouettes and impeccable quality. That said, we’re still clinging to the whites, sorry folks.
If the five rooms have been a charming treat, let us give you some more reasons to get yourself a designer outfit. So, Wendell has always been his own person. From choosing to work with cotton at a time when it was too pedestrian for the ramp to arguing that his clothes will be for everyone regardless of their size, age or gender, he’s happy being a people’s designer. You’ll notice that his clothes are also sized between slim and voluptuous goddess, a small validation for all body types. So, go on, get yourself a little something for the keeps.