We recently had the pleasure of spending a lovely summer afternoon with Poonam Kundra in her space that embodies the Buna spirit of slow and mindful living. Her love for nature, art and design resonates with the elements that we spot at her house, a carefully curated escape from the frenzy of the everyday city life. Poonam shares a part of her life with us, dressed in our Mystic Earth Shirt Dress and Fiori Dress.
Q 1. Tell us a little bit about you and your work.
Well.. Hi! I am Poonam, from India. Having been from Delhi, it is also where I’m currently based. Looking back, it’s been quite a journey I would say, being from a family of engineers, doctors & bankers, and yet choose fashion design for my studies. It’s been almost 14 years in the industry now and I’m happy to have worked for & with brands such as H&M, &Stories, Maje, Vanessa Bruno, Topshop, Club Monaco, Kenneth Cole etc. I’m with H&M since over 7 years and have been in different roles around development & sourcing, most recently heading the womenswear business in India for apparels and accessories. Having learnt to push boundaries during this pandemic (quite literally), I’ve recently taken over the position of Global Development Lead, heading the development teams for women’s apparels in India, Indonesia, China & Bangladesh. Besides being interested in art & design, I love spending time in nature, reading, yoga and of course travelling to keep the curious cat in me contented.
Poonam wears the Fiori Dress
Q 2. How did you make your space feel like an extension of you?
It happened quite organically to be honest. Being innately expressive, i find comfort in surrounding me with things I love & feel a connection with. It’s almost like putting a scrap-book together with a combination of souvenirs, gifts, visual memories, crafts, books, plants and more plants! I also love and intuitively collect a lot of seashells or fallen pinecones. My interest in poetry is often most
resonated by random objects found in nature which I try to bring home as mementos. One could say that I am never not curating, and the best part is that it’s always instinctive.
Poonam wears the Mystic Earth Shirt Dress
Q 3. What is your most prized possession and do you have a memory associated with it?
It’ll have to be this box I started to put together since my early college days, with all the relics I would find around the house. So far, it has a pair of reading glasses that belonged to my grand mother’s mother; a small foldable emerald green table clock that was my grand father’s; one of my mom’s notebooks from her school days with her poetry & notes; coins from my father’s travels
during the 70s; photographs of my grand parents from 1940s & 50s; and also photographs of later decades including childhood pics of my parents, my elder brother, cousins and myself. It’s a lot of eras & nostalgia in 1 box and is indeed one of my most valued possessions.
Poonam wears the Fiori Dress
Q 4. What was your biggest learning from the pandemic?
I remember one of my first realisations when it all started was how little we need to be happy. Really. Anything to everything that we thought defined or completed us, suddenly had to be redefined and in much simpler ways. Pandemic helped me slow down & learn to appreciate time with myself & family even more, releasing me from the labyrinths of outwardly distractions. Another important learning for me was to realise that I don’t always have to be in a different country to use the video calling option with my friends in Delhi ;)
Q 5. What do you feel is the Buna aesthetic and how do you resonate with it?
Buna seems to be a brand that puts comfort and values over conformity, something I always try to live by. I believe a lot in trusting the process & moving towards growth whilst contributing back to nature & community, something Buna too seems to be working towards.
Q 6. How would you describe your personal style?
I often switch modes based on my mood, but overall, my personal style is always a combination of bold, feminine & comfort in different proportions on different days. Being a fan of contrasts in general, I love these varied elements coming together, as also in my personality.
Q 7. Do you think you resonate with the Buna ideology of slow living? What would it mean to you?
Yes, very much. For me slow living is simply about the choices we make to spend our time & energy and finding ways to go back to our roots. It’s quite easy to get caught the rut of instant gratification, but trusting the pace and going with flow always helps. Slow living is so much about being present in the moment and making the time spent matter, instead of waiting for the next oneb to arrive.
Q 8. What are some of the slow practices you have incorporated in your day to day life?
Spending time in nature, reading, journaling, sketching & gardening are some of the things that help me stay grounded, stay connected. I also make conscious efforts towards mindful consumption and waste reduction in order to be sustainable. Besides these, daily yoga & meditation also does wonders, something I am currently trying to be more regular at.