The Bangalore Fashion Week, the second such showing in six months, kicked off at a hotel in Electronic City. The four-day event has mainly new designers showcasing their stuff as well as a few well-known names in the fashion industry. When asked about the same choice of venue two seasons in a row, Firoz from Dream Merchants the organising company said, “It was easier to filter the crowd and keep gatecrashers away when the venue was hard to reach.” However, he added that they would rethink it next time.
As expected the first day got off to a late start with models and designers getting their act together rather slowly. Mita Sharma’s collection Colors of Buddhism, a women’s evening wear collection for Winter 2010 was the opening show. With not many people present except for the media and a few invitees, the models sashayed down the ramp wearing the gowns and dresses in silks and wool blends. Vipin Batra’s intriguing styles were next with strong overtones of ethnic designs, large religious motifs and iconry on silks and linens. “I have been trying to get a platform for over three years and this is my big moment,” said the young designer. For young, first time designers fresh out of grad school, it is not easy to get a platform to showcase their work. Many first timers said, “It costs a lot of money to promote yourself in forums like these. Once you have been accepted by the jury, a designer has to pay Rs 60 thousand to the organisers which covers the cost of the models, the venue, the publicity and the event management. Even then you are not sure how much you will benefit from a 15 to 20 minutes showing and if the right people are in the audience.”
Apparently the aim of the fashion week is to get designers in touch with buyers who will then place orders for garments. But does that really happen?
“Last year, we generated Rs 1.8 crore worth of business and this year, we hope to better that figure,” say the organisers. But designers themselves were not too optimistic.
“I really don’t see genuine buyers here from large retail stores, chains or exporters.
I was hoping that it would be well attended from those in the fashion industry but that hasn’t happened,” they said.