Carving out a niche in the fashion industry, she continuesto spread her creative wings with each inspired collection. And being to the manor born, as well as bred with an eye for the tasteful and stylish, Darshi Keerthisena of Buddhi Batiks fame continues to amaze us year after year.

With a mane of curls and bright smiling eyes, Darshi narrates her life story and tells us about the mischievous little girl who hated wearing clothes but loved climbing trees, and how she discovered a lifetime’s passion in her parents’ batik workshop backyard.

Ashwini Vethakan sits down for a tête-à-tête with the textile and fashion designer, to learn about Darshi’s background and journey, as well as her preferences, hopes and aspirations.


How would you describe yourself to our readers?
I’m a go-getter; and a positive person. I have to thank my father for my optimistic attitude. He was always up and about and very positive about whatever he did. That ‘can do’ outlook was very influential when I was growing up.

What sort of child and then teenager were you?
I was the kid you’d spot on top of a tree... a real monkey! I was extremely mischievous as a kid – and I absolutely hated clothes! I found clothes itchy and restrictive; and I liked natural fabric and was always playing in the Buddhi Batiks backyard. So you could say that I was immersed in fabric and colour during my childhood.

Tell us about your interest in fashion – when did this begin and why?
My first passion has always been in textile design. Growing up surrounded by the designers and artisans at Buddhi Batiks influenced my decision to pursue textile and fashion design.

Do you have any other passions apart from textiles and fashion?
Yes, I love photography and architecture.

If not batik, what do you think you’d like to work on in terms of fashion and design?
I’d probably be working with embroidery – something along the lines of mixed media printing and hand embroidery. It’s a field I’ve dabbled in and I love the craft side of fashion too. So who knows, I might create a few pieces later, down the line...

Your most memorable moment in life so far is…?
I have many memorable moments in life but the one I hold most dear is the birth of my daughter and holding her in my arms for the very first time.


What is your definition of ‘success’?
Having a calm and peaceful mind.

How would those in your closest circle describe you?
As someone who is a little crazy and a loyal friend.

What are the five items that you always use?
My phone, hand sanitiser, a Buddhi Batiks sari and a pair of comfortable shoes.

And what does a typical day off look like?
I spend the day with my daughter – and indulge in some shopping and spend time at the beach. Sometimes I take my daughter on a tour – which we call an ‘art tour’ – to galleries, museums or temples and churches, where there are beautiful frescos and paintings.


How would you describe the impact of your career on your personal life? Are there any aspects of it that you hope will change on the way forward?
My career has helped me to grow and appreciate all the opportunities that have come my way but there is also a lack of time. I would like to be around my family a little more – and I’m working towards it!

How invested are you in your personal development? And how do you manage your physical, mental and spiritual health?
I wake up early. I take time out to think of what I have to do on that day. Sometimes I watch K-dramas as it relaxes me.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I’d learn to better manage my time.

And what’s next for Darshi Keerthisena?
I would like to felicitate my parents for their contribution to the batik craft in Sri Lanka.