If you’ve been living in India, you’d be well aware of homegrown fashion retail brand KAZO, which sought to redefine the western fashionscape within the country by introducing trend-led, chic designs for the modern Indian.
Founded by Deepak Aggarwal who is also the MD of the brand, KAZO is known to be driven by the latest runway trends translated to affordable occasionwear without compromising on quality.
A brand that began with two locations in a single city, is now present in every state, and is rapidly expanding with at least six new outlets opening each quarter.
Covid-19 made people realise the importance of quality and longevity, making them gradually start inclining towards slow fashion, prioritising comfort above style.
This is where the second generation stepped in to lend a crucial turn to the brand’s development. Titled ‘KZ07,’ KAZO’s new platform has been ideated by Aggarwal’s second generation – Divya Aggarwal and Siddhant Aggarwal who co-founded this brand during the Covid era.
As a result, the collection has been handpicked to appeal to a wide range of young audience, and features unisex and versatile clothes in shades of grey and neutrals blended with neon and bright hues to increase the collection’s appeal.
KZ07 is a platform for men and women where fashion meets art and comfort. By experimenting with new approaches to embrace cultures, the platform aims to extend individuality beyond people’s comfort zone.
As a result, the collection has been handpicked to appeal to a wide range of young audience and features unisex and versatile clothes in shades of grey and neutrals blended with neon and bright hues to increase the collection’s appeal.
The silhouettes have a simple but effective design. It’s also not a trend to fade away, because comfort is here to stay.
A young 25-year-old Divya completed her high school education from The British School, New Delhi before acquiring a BFA degree from Parsons School of Design, New York City with a major in Fashion Designing and a minor in Design Management. Her love for design and experiences across New York and India is what inspired her to create her own story within the industry and that is how KZ07 was conceived.
“Since my childhood, I have been surrounded by fashion, fabric and everything in between. The privilege of growing up in such an environment piqued my interest in fashion from a very young age. During my high school days, I was extremely passionate and involved in fine arts which eventually shaped my interest in fashion design,” Divya Aggarwal, Co-Founder KZ07 and Creative Director at KAZO Brands, told Apparel Resources (AR) in an exclusive interview.
“My understanding of fashion straddles two diverse schools of thought. While my love for exclusivity has always complimented my imagination and it leads me to appreciate designs that veer towards fantasy. However, my innate belief in utility fashion structures my creativity through the prism of practicality.” she added.
PRODUCT CATEGORIES, USP AND PRICING
KZ07 features both women and men product categories ranging from topwear, bottomwear, outerwear to dresses.
The women’s topwear category includes arm warmers, tops, tube tops, T-shirts, shirts, sweatshirts, jackets priced onwards of Rs. 1670, whilst the bottomwear, outerwear and dresses are priced onwards of Rs. 2870, Rs. 3970, and Rs. 2770, respectively.
The men’s topwear categories include T-shirts, shirts and hoodies priced onwards of Rs. 2270, whilst the bottomwear category including trousers, joggers, denims and shorts start from Rs. 2970. The men’s outerwear pieces at KZ07 are priced onwards of Rs. 4970.
Commenting on the brand’s USP, Divya said, “Our collection is curated for the diverse youth. Unisex and versatile clothing form two prime components of KZ07 collection and shades of grey and neutrals mixed with neon and bright hues hike up the entire collection’s solicitation. Our silhouettes have a basic yet impactful style. And it’s not a fade-out fashion because comfort is here to stay. With KZ07, you buy into a lifestyle, not just a garment.”
“Our collection is curated for the diverse youth. Unisex and versatile clothing form two prime components of KZ07 collection and our silhouettes have a basic yet impactful style. KZ07 is not fade-out fashion because comfort is here to stay. With KZ07, you buy into a lifestyle, not just a garment.” – Divya Aggarwal, Co-Founder KZ07 and Creative Director at KAZO Brands
Interestingly, the Neon in the collection stands for uniqueness and the number 07 derives its significance from the original inception of KAZO brands on 07.07.07.
TARGET MARKET, SIZING AND KEY DETAILING
KZ07 targets the youth who focus on versatility. These are people who are trend-motivated but value longevity – the generation who is bold and ambitious and relate with unisex clothing and styles.
For women, the sizes run from XS to L, while for men, sizes range from S to XL.
KZ07 is all about trims and details, upgrading everyday basics with new and trendy trim details such as neon zippers, buttons, draw-cords, etc.
“We believe in converting streetwear fashion into a more wearable and commercial way. Comfortable fit, clean cuts and elevating trim details make our pieces stand out,” Divya said.
MANUFACTURING AND SOURCING
Comprising a young team of 15 designers across various departments of fashion, graphics, print design and social media, KAZO’s own vertical manufacturing units are located in Delhi-NCR and produce 70-80 per cent of Kazo and KZ07 styles.
“We have always believed in the ideology of ‘Made in India’, and hence around 80 per cent of our garment manufacturing is done across India and 20 per cent of manufacturing is carried out from countries such as Bangladesh and China,” Divya elaborated, adding, “In India, we work with a lot of local vendors for accessories, fragrances, packaging, fabrics and several other raw materials.”
As the brand does not have any fabric or yarn manufacturing vertical, all its fabrics are sourced from local vendors and suppliers across India. The brand is also in the process of launching its very own vegan leather accessories line in stores soon.
“Around 80 per cent of our garment manufacturing is done across India and 20 per cent of manufacturing is carried out from countries such as Bangladesh and China. In India, we work with a lot of local vendors for accessories, fragrances, packaging, fabrics and several other raw materials.” – Divya Aggarwal
India is a huge market for all types of fabrics and trims sourcing and KZ07’s major knits and jersey fabrics are manufactured by Tirupur mills and factories. All other woven fabrics such as cotton, viscose and polyester are sourced from both Gujarat and North India mills.
The brand comes out with two major collections every year namely the Autumn/ Winter collection and the Spring/Summer collection. Along with these, the brand occasionally continues to drop small capsule collections every alternate month to keep freshness and newness in the store. Also as a brand philosophy, KZ07 does not want to miss out on any particular trend for the season.
KZ07’s in-house warehouse is based in KAZO’s Head Office which caters to pan-India regions across the country.
FASHION MEETS ART AND CULTURE
KZ07 is a platform for men and women where fashion meets art and comfort.
As a brand, it offers high-end unisex clothing which not only focuses on the hottest streetwear trends but also promotes longevity through the refined quality of their designs.
“KZ07 encourages its customers to indulge in a consciously sustainable journey while playing with their incredibly comfortable and refreshingly versatile selection of clothing embracing all forms of art and culture,” Divya corroborated.
In the present day scenario, social media has connected the entire world under one platform which has allowed embracing various cultures and forms of art being widely accepted by consumers in so many ways that the brand has grown to be a perfect fit in the segment.
The following are some of the main excerpts taken from Apparel Resources’ conversation with KAZO’s Co-founder.
AR: What, according to you, is driving consumption in fashion categories in the Indian market?
DA: Comfort with style. This is the only desire of any customer whether in India or abroad. According to us, with the growing need for comfort, Indian brands need to focus more on creating comfortable clothing while also looking at the fashion trends international western brands are offering.
People are moving towards more multi-purpose clothing, pieces that can be worn both in-and-out of the house, can be styled up or styled down according to an occasion. Also, consumers are becoming more environmentally conscious and are considering sustainability as an important part of the lifestyle.
AR: How has the athleisure industry in India evolved post-pandemic?
DA: During Covid, people realised the importance of quality and longevity and gradually started making efforts towards slow fashion, preferring comfort above style. That’s where the ideology comes from. People were spotted putting in more money into high-quality comfortable clothing.
Athleisure can never fade. One of the strengths of athleisure outfits is in the number of options you have available to diversify and expand your wardrobe. Athleisure isn’t about one type of clothing — it’s a dynamic range of mix and match options that work well together and with more conventional everyday wear.
“Athleisure is the clothing of our moment – it reflects our evolving interest and appreciation with an active and healthy lifestyle. An increased desire for clothing that supports both an active and social lifestyle has combined with new innovations in fabrics to shape modern athleisure — clothing that combines style and function like no other.” – Divya Aggarwal
Experimentation in the fashion industry was rampant if not always coherent, and casual has conquered the battlefield. And an increased desire for clothing that supports both an active and social lifestyle has combined with new innovations in fabrics to shape modern athleisure — clothing that combines style and function like no other.
Athleisure is the clothing of our moment. It reflects our evolving interest and appreciation with an active and healthy lifestyle.
AR: How do you face competition in the fashion industry and how do you plan to be at toe with other GenZ and millennials in the market?
DA: As we are aware of the market trends and competition, we know who our target market is, and therefore comfort stands out from all of them. KZ07 is art and fashion combined which makes it different from the rest of the brands.
KZ07 is available online on the brand’s own website www.kz07.com apart from physical stores across the country. Our products will also soon be listed on e-commerce platforms such as Myntra, Nykaa, Ajio Luxe and Tata Cliq Luxury.