Prutha Raithatha is the force behind the experimental fashion blog Don’t Shoe Me. She creates stories through fashion -- and her style is everything but boring. Furthermore, her fashion stories, like the recent one titled May the Gods be with you. Period., incorporate serious socio-cultural messages. Over a cup of Glühwein, she gave us the scoop on where she gets her inspiration from, and revealed her favorite designers, blogs and places.
When and why did you start your blog?
I started it in January 2009. I felt that I want to express myself creatively, and my profession, architecture wasn’t completely doing that for me. I love fashion and I wanted to create different stories with the help of fashion.
Your blog is very special. Would you consider it a niche-blog?
Absolutely. I experiment a lot on my personal fashion and I wanted it to be more of a stylist job than just pretty pictures of someone in nice clothes. I try, in fact, very hard to not be trendy – even if I like the trend. I don’t want to show what everybody else is wearing. My personal fashion is as experimental as I can get.
Who inspires you?
Fantasies and chaos inspire me. Anything and anyone that evokes a strong emotion inside of me can be the spark of inspiration for a new blog post.
What makes your blog different from the thousands of other fashion blogs?
It is an editorial storybook of art and fashion concepts, and of street fashion that helps inspire such creative concepts. All my personal fashion shoots are carefully created around a strong idea, and I take immense effort to find different locations, pre-decide some poses and picture layouts, develop story lines, use professional photography and post production which I keep experimenting with also.
So the personal fashion shoots you see on the blog are crazy, diverse and artful. The street fashion, too, is concentrated on experimental people on the street, not trendy people. DSM has very little to do with trends. I would like to style some cool magazine shoots someday, so this is my way of practicing. I am learning a LOT along the way, as I do this almost once every week. I don't think there are many other blogs out there that have such a strong take on editorial personal fashion - unless they are working in the industry already and the blog is their portfolio of work.
How does your Indian upbringing influence your shoots?
I have very strong Indian roots. I wear this Bindi, which has almost become my identity in the fashion world and which I think is very cool, but it’s traditional at the same time. But incorporate it and a lot of other Indian things in my entirely western everyday wardrobe, but definitely in a more hipster and high-fashion way, than the pure traditional Indian way. My love for color also comes from my Indian-ness. I am definitely not a typical New Yorker dressed in black all the time.
How do you stay relevant in this ever-changing blogosphere?
I don't think I really care to be relevant in the blogosphere at all. My blog is "MY" space to be creative and have fun and to express whatever my tiny brains wipe up without external pressure of being good, bad or relevant to others. If what I do is something others like to see they can, and that's great. I guess, so far, my relevance has been being original and experimental and pushing the boundaries a little bit more each time.
Where do you go out when you have a night off?
It is never the same. I love going to listen to live music at the Brooklyn Bowl or Bell House. I watch a lot of indie movies and no I am not just saying that because it sounds cool. I genuinely love independent movies and I try to watch one almost every week. Apart from that, nights off could include anything from playing ping pong to bar hopping with friends and eating Indian food at 4am in the Village.
Who are your favorite designers?
I would say Manish Arora, Yohji Yamamoto, Rick Owens, Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Comme des Garcons, Falguni and Shane Peacock, KTZ, just to name a few.
Which blogs do you read?
I love Miss Fitz’ blog, a crazy Australian stylist and designer who lives in Brooklyn. I really like some street style blogs, like the Facehunter and Street FSN. It’s really hard to pinpoint certain blogs, because I read so many. Tavi is still one of my favorites and I love how Susie Bubble is so on top of everything around the world – and I hate how she always gets the things I want really bad before I do!
Check out Don't Shoe Me HERE.