By Christy Lau
Accomplished executive Kratika Lakhotia loves experimenting with fashion, and is able to infuse even the simplest ensemble with glamour.
“I feel like I have two fashion personas: one for the weekdays when I’m at work, which is more sophisticated and formal, and one on the weekends, which is more experimental,” Kratika tells me as we sit in her spacious apartment at Supalai Prima Riva, overlooking the Chao Phraya River.
Today, the 24-year-old Director of Suntech International Co., Ltd, a family-run business, has chosen three looks that epitomise these dual style identities, from the monochrome formal business look that sets a polished first impression at company meetings, to the two edgier, off-duty looks that play up her fun and mischievous side.
Born in India but raised primarily in Bangkok, Kratika only really discovered her love for fashion when she started shopping for herself at age 14. Up until that point, this fashionista-to-be wore what her mother bought her, which would be in line with whatever was in trend at the moment, be it animal print, chokers or the infamous apple bottom jeans of the early 2000s.
“As a teenager, my personal style was very casual and laid back until I started work at age 19. Then it became a battle between dressing my age and also dressing respectfully for work, so I would be taken seriously,” she explains. “As I moved up the career ladder, I was surrounded by people who were at least five years older than me. To close that age gap, I started dressing more maturely and switched from skater skirts and sneakers to formal dresses and high heels.”
While she sticks to neutral-coloured formal attire during the week, Kratika loves rocking high-waisted skirts, pants, and jeans on the weekends, adding the occasional boho print for some colourful, funky flair. “Since I’m not tall, anything high-waisted is my go-to because it adds height and makes my legs look longer. I also wear heels for the same reason.”
It’s no surprise that Kendall Jenner is one of her celebrity style inspirations. “I love how effortlessly chic she looks, even when she’s dressed in the most casual clothes, and that’s what I try to do with my own outfits,” she shares.
So where does she shop for her Instagrammable looks? Besides turning to online brand LOOKSI for workwear and SHEIN for their large range of everyday essentials, Kratika also loves Siam Paragon for branded items, and Siam Square and Bangrak Bazaar for more street-inspired pieces and accessories.
When it comes to defining exactly what her style is, she says it all depends on her mood. “I only follow trends if they compliment my personality. People these days tend to say they have to feel comfortable no matter what they are wearing, but that’s not always the case with me,” she elaborates. “I style myself to feel confident, and that’s what makes me comfortable, not the clothing itself.”
Equally adept at looking dressed up or down depending on the occasion, Kratika’s free-spirited sartorial choices are sure to inspire every woman to bring forth her inner #bossbabe.