Remember Vijay Singh, the man who gave many at the Fashion Design Council of India sleepless nights by getting design stalwarts to his side? He then disappeared after his arrest by the Bangalore Police for an alleged fraud involving actor Sanjay Khan.
He’s back in action and it appears that Singh is still the king. The Amby Valley Bridal Week (AVBW) that he’s organising between October 29 and November 2 has some of the country’s most well-known fashion designers such as Manish Arora, Manish Malhotra, Neeta Lulla, Shantanu & Nikhil, Ashima-Leena, Falguni & Shane Peacock, etc participating in it.
According to Singh, there will be more designers joining in, even as some of his staunch supporters in the past like Tarun Tahiliani, Rohit Bal, Raghavendra Rathore etc are missing from the list. “Sumanta Roy and Amby Valley have been of great support to me for the Paris Fashion Week for the last two seasons and for the coming season as well and I am really happy to be part of this bridal week,” says Manish Arora. “I will be doing a “Best of Manish Arora” including clothes from London Fashion Week here… something I have never done before.”
According to Singh, this Rs 4-crore event will have the longest fashion runway the country has ever seen, stretching up to 140 feet in a winding manner at the Sahara Star Hotel atrium in Bombay, with just two rows of seating enabling everyone to have a good view of things on offer on the runway. In addition, the event will also have exhibition areas where clothing, shoes and other accessories will be on display.
Says designer Shantanu Mehra, “Both Wills India Fashion Week and Lakme Fashion Week are positioned more as prêt events while Couture Week is more of an event where a designer can push the envelope on his creativity even in the form of an installation on the runway. AVBW addresses the most important market — bridal. We will be doing a collection of cocktail wear.”
Christened as a bridal week, Singh says the event will have all that is needed for a wedding and its peripheral functions including some western wear. Though murmurs are making the rounds in the fashion circuit that participating designers are being paid heftily by the organisers for showcasing at the event, Singh says that only their “logistics” are being taken care of. According to him, Manish Arora’s Paris Fashion Week participation is being supported by the organisers and for AVBW, designers are not being charged participation fees and their travel, hotel stay and other incidental costs are being taken care of by the organisers.
With most Indian designers earning their moolah through wedding wear, the event comes as a promising one. However, if we go by the adage “the proof of the pudding is in the eating,” we will then have to see the pudding first, taste it and then decide!