The fiesta returns...
The sixth edition of Lakme India Fashion Week kicks off in April amidst the usual controversies and couture
Rathi Vinay Jha, Director General, FDCI, (centre) with sponsors and fashion designers Photo: Sandeep Saxena
RAMP, PRET, business. Yes, Lakme India Fashion Week is back and so are its defining words. Into its sixth edition, the Week may not be developing but it is growing indeed. Scheduled for April 20-26 this year, there are going to be 61 designers, 39 fashion shows, 70 designer stalls and a flurry of sponsored events - a significant leap from last year. But what's really a plus is the inclusion of accessory stalls after the industry experts criticised the virtual absence of this major democratising segment of fashion in the Week.
"Accessories have become a significant part of fashion," says Rathi Vinay Jha, Director General, Fashion Design Council of India. Last year's find Varun Bahl and Monisha Jaising will interpret the statement this year. Shalini of Geisha designs whose bags were liked last year, promises to come up with more bags and belts this year.
Like her predecessor, Rathi emphasises fashion is no longer a means of entertainment in India. It has become serious business and there is a need for focussed approach. She also asserts that FDCI is working as "backroom boys" to bring the designers to the forefront.
However, during the press conference to announce the dates and participating designers, there was no one from the fashion fraternity to answer media queries regarding the creative aspect of fashion.
"The designers didn't want to disclose their designs right now. It's as simple as that," says Jha. Point was not what they are going to showcase but to understand why after six years of hard work, Indian fashion is still relying on East meets West theory, why we are still selling our products as separates, why seniors get away showing couture in the name of diffusion and why the 300-million strong Indian market is still waiting to be tapped.
Designer Suneet Verma, however, maintains, "Each designer has his own view on fashion but somebody could have certainly spoken about the trends. If not here, a separate platform could be provided for a discussion on trends. I would love to be a part of it." Another designer on condition of anonymity says, "There is a creative committee but it has so many members that you can't put all of them here. Each one has his view. It's a good idea though."
According to media reports, victims of the committee were last year's discoveries Gauri and Nainika. They were reportedly denied permission to be part of the Week this year as they sent shoddy samples of their work. However, their name finds mention in the stall list. Rathi tries to cover up.
"There are only 24 hours in a day. Everybody can't be adjusted on ramp. Anyway, I should make clear they were part of a sponsor's show last year." Familiar ways of the Great Indian fashion family!
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