At Home With… Akanksha Himatsingka

 

With much unpredictability in our present due to COVID-19, the looming question is whether life – as we know it – has irrevocably changed. Needless to say, we must evolve; a practice close to our hearts and intentions at Himêya.

For those of us with the privilege, home has been a centering force. Here, Akanksha Himatsingka, Himêya’s Founder and Creative Director, elaborates on all she is grateful for in these unique circumstances:

 

Spending more unexpected time at home…
Work from home feels like the ‘new normal’. It’s more wholesome, quite effective too. The idea of having meals at home together as a family, cooking, conversations and the overall time spent together – there’s something special about it. I’ve gone back to so much – board games with my son, more time with family and friends, even if virtually. There’s a lot of coming together in general and there’s no rushing anymore, as I used to travel extensively for work.

There is also space and time to really think about new ideas and thoughts, infusing them with effecting energies. For instance, I’ve been able to design Himêya’s next collection entirely from home. I remember mentioning to our design consultants that, “We no longer need to take morning-evening flights. A lot can happen remotely.”

 

In Bed With… Akanksha Himatsingka

 

 

Rituals to cope with one’s range of emotions and productivity during lockdown…
I’ve been meditating and exercising daily, and this time for myself helps me immensely. The guided meditation sessions are extremely helpful in better channelling my energies. I’m very grateful for this time, and I believe it has been given to us for a reason. We’ve all been forced to look within, to really understand what it is that we want, and it helps articulate so many questions. How we spend our time each day, what work-life balance means, the choices we make and what we can do to make it better for ourselves.

What do you think the impact of this pandemic will be on the design industry in the foreseeable future?
I believe this is a tipping point. Those in leadership positions will need to affect this change for design, for creating, for consumption – we have been given an opportunity to change our patterns.

The questions around sustainable manufacturing, fast-fashion, and the act of consumption overall are extremely heightened at this time. We’re all being forced to think about how and what we consume, its impact on the environment, and us.

 

“COVID-19 has us looking at our lives with a microscope. The focus has now shifted within. Through this, I believe we will all learn to consume and create better.”

How is Himêya’s approach to business adapting to these changes?
Fortunately Himêya is a part of the Himatsingka family, which has been committed to vertically integrated conscious manufacturing for over 10 years now. At a time like this, it only strengthens our belief in our own narrative.

 I always say that I went into a semi-quarantine a couple years ago and Himêya is a result of those emotions. Himêya has, and will continue with the philosophy of less is more. This time only reinforces that sentiment and compels us to continue on our path.

We’ve been seeing increased global interest in the brand since our preview at Heimtextil this past January and are now getting ready to launch Himêya with partners in Europe and the UK in early 2021.

 

In Bed With… Akanksha Himatsingka

 

 

Is this event challenging your perspective on life?
This isn’t challenging my perspective, but only deepening my belief in living simply. We over complicate our lives and create pressures in our own minds. An event like this reinforces the idea of simplicity at various levels, and this understanding is a priceless antidote for living better.

How are you keeping your immunity up?
I don’t go crazy with doing too much – I exercise daily and maintain a healthy weight. This works for me. And I have a daily dose of cold pressed beetroot juice with ginger and celery. Beets are known to increase energy levels and stamina, containing Vitamin A, C and B.

Favourite space in your home? 
Our family living room – which is also my home-office at the moment.

What gets you out of bed every morning?
It used to be my early morning alarm to walk my son to the bus stop. But now, no more alarms. Mornings are relaxing with a hot cup of tea and time with family.

 

 

 

Tips for a good night’s rest?
Meditation and music – the very reason we created Sounds of Himêya!

“Soothing sounds and music have a direct effect on the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps our body relax and prepare for better rest.”

 

Bedroom pet peeve?
A messy bed.

Has the lockdown been a creative time for you?
I never thought I would have the time to cook, but I’ve enjoyed being back in the kitchen. I was craving ramen noodles, and so I had to make them! I haven’t had much time to read as work continues through the day, but I’ve enjoyed Arthur C. Brooks’ newly introduced column in The Atlantic, “How to Build a Life,” where he talks about the tools needed to construct a life that feels whole and meaningful.

What are you most looking forward to returning to once it’s safe?
Nothing really. I do miss being in nature, but that can wait.

 

 

 

What role does mediation play in your life?
I never thought I would meditate. For the longest time I wondered how people could sit still for as long. I started with the Headspace app, and then my sister took over, who is a trained healer. It’s a personal journey and choice. I’ve been guided through my sessions and hence it has been easier and gradual. I highly recommend it – it has given me such clarity.

“I took to meditation because I needed it; it’s hard to describe what it does but it helped me get into my own mind and understand myself better.”

 

What is the sense of ‘home’ you wish to convey through Himêya’s aesthetics?
Home is an emotion, and our collections too are emotion-led. The reality with which we live must reflect through our imagery. To be honest, there is no real sense of direction… just a flow infused with emotional energies. Overall, for our campaigns, I look for spaces with honesty and natural ease.

At Home With... Akanksha Himatsingka, CEO & Creative Director, Himêya
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