• Wednesday, June 12, 2024


From a village to Cannes: Designer Nancy Tyagi is toast of fashion world

Trending on social media and making headlines in the mainstream press, Tyagi has the likes of actress Sonam Kapoor asking her to design for them.

Nancy Tyagi (Photo credit: Nancy Tyagi/Instagram)

By: Mohnish Singh

Who is Nancy Tyagi? That is suddenly an oft-asked question — and not just in the world of high fashion — with the young woman who stitched her own clothes and modelled them too in the Cannes film festival the new toast of the glamour world for her dramatic rise to fame.

The famed red carpet at the French Riviera town is a far cry from the streets of her village Barnawa in Uttar Pradesh and the 23-year-old has seen her Instagram following jump from seven lakh to two million in just a matter of days.

Trending on social media and making headlines in the mainstream press, Tyagi has the likes of actress Sonam Kapoor asking her to design for them.

Cannes almost didn’t happen, said Tyagi, who came to Delhi in 2020 to prepare for the civil services but couldn’t go through with it because of financial constraints.

Invited as a fashion influencer, she was initially just too scared and refused to go.

“But my team convinced me and when I went there, it felt like it was the best decision of my life. Even until I was in the car by the red carpet, I was scared. But as soon as I stepped out, I felt totally different,” Tyagi told PTI in an interview.

“I gave many poses. They went viral and the audience loved it. I am very grateful for them. I don’t have words to thank them for their love and support. I felt very nice, and also that I was one of the influencers who were in Cannes is amazing. And I’m happy that our country is progressing,” said the young designer who turned heads at the recently concluded 77th edition of the film festival.


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A post shared by Nancy Tyagi (@nancytyagi___)

Overwhelmed by the attention, she said she now wants to make a costume for Kapoor. The actress, known for her versatile fashion choices, praised Tyagi’s Cannes outfits and even shared an Instagram story asking when she would make an ensemble for her.

“Sonam Kapoor first posted my video in her Instagram story and later she also loved both of my Cannes looks, but she loved the saree look the most. She asked me to make her an outfit too in her Instagram story. It’s a huge thing for me that a fashion diva like her has asked me. I will definitely make an outfit for her in the future,” Tyagi said.

Till a week ago, not many had heard of Nancy Tyagi. Then she grabbed the attention of shutterbugs with her outfits, competing for attention with the who’s who of the global showbiz and glamour world. And there is seemingly no looking back.

Besides her followers on her Instagram account, which is filled with her impressive DIY skills videos and clips of creating outfits from scratch, she also has a million followers on YouTube.

For her Cannes foray, Tyagi designed four garments, which took her two months to put together. She created her first look, a beautiful 20 kg pink gown with frills and made with 1,000 metres of fabric, in 30 days. In the month that followed, she made the other three.

“For my first Cannes look, I thought of making the outfit in orange or black. I dropped the idea of making it in black because all the photographers there wear black and it would seem that I am one of them. And for orange, I thought it wouldn’t look good in summer.

“But I didn’t know that it would be cold in France. So I chose the colour pink and I looked like a doll in it. And (her younger brother) Manu also told me to choose pink. I made four outfits which took me two months to make. I worked on the first look, the pink gown, single-handed and it took me one month… It was difficult,” she said.

For the second look, she wore an intricate hand-embroidered lavender saree with a full-sleeve and backless blouse, a matching veil, and a long train.

“When I got to know that I am going to Cannes, the first thought that crossed my mind was what to make and how. So, I thought that because I am going from India, a saree must be one of my outfits. I gave my saree a western touch and the audience liked it a lot. It was my best decision to wear a saree and I think people loved it even more than my first outfit,” she said.

Her third look at the gala, which ran from May 14 to May 25, was an all-black ensemble comprising a corset, a tailed skirt, and a stole.

Tyagi also revealed her fourth Cannes outfit — a white and blue printed pant-suit — was made out of sustainable fabric.

“I made this look from sustainable fabric and it’s 100 per cent organic cotton. I will create more looks that will be made from sustainable fabric. I kept this outfit quite simple, I didn’t give it much of that red carpet vibe. I will also be posting this on my Instagram, this is my fourth look at Cannes.”

Given her newfound fame, would she like to become an actor?

“No, I don’t want to become an actor as I don’t know much about acting. I was making clothes for myself till now but now I want to make them for everyone. And I don’t want to recreate looks anymore, I want to make my own designs,” she said.


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A post shared by Nancy Tyagi (@nancytyagi___)

The fashion influencer — still a one-woman operation — said her 17-year-old brother has been the guiding force in her life.

“I ask my brother for the designs. So, he gives me the ideas and designs, and then I make the outfit. Sometimes what happens is when I feel uncomfortable in some outfits, Manu suggests I should do this and that and I always listen to him. He told me about the design, he decided on the colour and everything.

“My tastes change frequently, I like something initially but then after some time I start hating it and at that time I regret it and think that I should have listened to my brother. So from designs to the colour of the outfits, everything was my brother’s idea,” she said.

Recalling her move from the village to Delhi, she said the pandemic struck, and that put paid to her plans to study further.

“At the time of lockdown, everything was closed and when I went to Mukherjee Nagar (in north Delhi) for coaching, they told me to buy books and go home and that coaching would be reopened after the lockdown.

“But we didn’t have enough money for the coaching as well as to run the house. My mother also lost her job during the lockdown. We thought that we would not have enough money left till the coaching would start. So we bought a camera and started making videos.”

Her father, who runs a transport service in their village, also helped. Sometimes, her brother Manu’s fees had to be sacrificed to fund the videos.

Four years later, all that hard work has paid off. And Tyagi is well on her way to walk the red carpet to more fame.

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