The New Year brings in a new concept to fashion weeks in India — resort wear. Lakmé Fashion Week (LFW) has now officially declared that the forthcoming LFW in March will be meant for Summer/ Resort collections. So, this year there are a couple of new things that we will witness. In addition to its change to the resort wear platform, LFW will also make the collections shown on the ramp immediately available to the buyers. It is for this that it has advanced the fashion week dates to March.
Now it will be interesting to see where this is going to take our fashion industry. Unlike their Western counterparts, buyers in India always wanted collections to be in their stores soon after the fashion week is over. If the majority wanted this, then the forthcoming LFW should prove to be a success, as it will make all the buyers happy by giving them just what they wanted in terms of collections.
Of course, the onus then will shift to the participating designers as to how quickly they will be able to deliver the orders that they receive during the fashion week or soon after the event. Here I think most of our fashion designers may have to pull up their socks and stick to their promises made to the buyers. I know for a fact that some of the most established names in the industry made promises and have never delivered. If this continues, then there will be a problem. The biggest advantage that LFW’s decision to change its theme to Summer/Resort is going to give to our designers is no one — neither the buyer nor the designer — is going to go home disappointed.
What has been happening was that designers often presented what they wanted to — winter in summer and vice versa — and some of the buyers told me that they came all the way to see what they can buy and found nothing.
A theme such as Summer/Resort through the year would mean buyers who come here would arrive with a clear-cut idea as to what they are going to see on the fashion runway. This, in turn, means whichever international buyer is going to come, he/she also will come only if he/she is interested in buying this collection.
Resort is a through-the-year kind of theme. So foreign buyers might well be interested in having a look at what our designers have to offer. In the past, I have seen that this is the kind of collection that has been received well by the buyers. And with winter restricting itself just to the North, and most of our designers’ business coming from domestic buying, this may well prove to be a good start for the industry.