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Ritika Mittal, Designer & founder, MORA- Fashion Art

Saturday August 22, 2009 , 5 min Read

No garment has defined the Indian woman and her qualities like the saree. From myth and legend to modern design the saree has outlived and outlasted trends and styles. Its newest avatar has been at the hands of Ritika Mittal who has employed her entrepreneurial skills to make symbol of Indian tradition or the traditional Indian attire and bringing back the tradition of India's own un-stitched garment since ages.

 “MORA- Fashion Art” is our Young Entrepreneurs dream and she told us what it signifies saying “MORA is a reflection of what I believe in- every creation is a labor of love, with a liberal dose of colours, doused with inspiration from nature. The spirit of MORA is rooted in tradition with a trace of modernity!”

“Mora's designs are peppered with traces of my wanderlust. From the verdant fields of Punjab, to the ethereal charm of a frozen Ladakh, Mora evolves with every new sight and sound that I experience during my travels.”

“Which is why Every MORA design has a story… I travel all over India to source out the right fabrics and then start a tedious yet very interesting hunt for bringing together beautiful fabrics and details like handmade patchwork, beads, sequins, laces etc and finally creating the whole saree!”

“Mora creates sarees that are essentially wearable art, created from the finest fabrics from across the country, using details and inspirations drawn from nature...

Mora identifies with every woman who is comfortable in her skin and complete in her spirit.”

The Mora saree comes from a variety of places, and touches a number of lives, proving once again that it is more than just a piece of clothing. Ritika says “I use the services of craftsmen n weavers from all over India. I know it for the fact that at least those people get benefited and it’s so exciting to see their innocent unadulterated art and once MORA expands, I wish to branch out to the NGOs.” 

“Every Mora creation is unique in its own and no 2 more sarees will ever be alike. I travel all over India and get the most authentic, traditional fabrics and create funky/ “different” sarees… you won’t get any of those kinds anywhere else in the market. And since its unique people take time to get their heart set on it”

A thoughtful mix of networking, exhibitions, and getting exhibitions at big stores is on the cards for Mora. Ritika has her designs set on expansion and adds “I would like to venture out to accessories and home made furniture eventually.”

Her choice to go into business for herself was simple; she says “There’s nothing like working for your own self. And it isn’t easy. You every mistake is yours and your every good decision made is your own too which is what makes it challenging. It’s not monotonous and gives you the creative satisfaction that a 9-5 job doesn’t provide.”

Her dreams have taken precedent over her more material needs. She has no regrets and says “I left my 11 years old media career- a well paying job and good profile to follow my dreams and leave the rat race. The most difficult challenge was to overcome my attachment to my media career which was good and stable and stepping into an unknown territory on fabrics J and eventually sarees”

She invested about 3 lakhs into Mora, but it has all been worth it. Her mother has been at her side through it all and helps her in every way possible. Ritika recalls her proudest moment saying “My first sale was of 8 sarees together and every time she sold a saree, I used to get a call from my client saying “oh god the saree is gone… I was hoping it won’t go and I can keep it for myself”… the sarees were sold out in 3 days”

Despite the monetary struggle that we are all facing, Ritika is firmly standing by her decision and says it is so because of “My love for MORA which is colours, energy and happiness… and no more 9-5 job!”

She is all set to make a splash at the “Kala ghoda” festival in 2010 and making MORA a recognizable brand. It should be no easy task, but then again for a Limca record holder (2001) it should not be too much trouble. She is in the record books for setting up India’s first home broadcasting system at the school level.

Yourstory is sure that Ritika will reinvent how we see the saree, and keep its long legacy going. We wish her luck in her endeavors and ask all our readers to pay heed to her as she advises “Keep faith in yourself and take the plunge. Fears like “how will I sustain” “I won’t have enough money” “I will have to cut down on my lifestyle” everything feels mundane once you have taken the first step… n remember everyone goes through those same jitters. But they do make it big… ”