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Designs within your means

india Updated: Jun 20, 2010 01:20 IST
Vinod Nair

Early this week, I was at the Pitti Immagine menswear week in Florence. While there I realised that there are plenty of things that India and Italy can do to further the business of fashion in both the countries. To begin with, I saw plenty of brands, accessories and clothing, displaying their merchandise at the venue that bore the ‘Made in Italy’ theme, but with affordable price tags.

I think it will be a good idea for Indian businessmen to start scouting for Italian brands that bear quality but at the same time have the pricing that the growing Indian middle class can afford. And the choice comes in over 1,000 brands. While luxury brands are trying to get a foothold in the Indian retail market, it will also be a good idea for us to have brands that maybe about 40 per cent lower than the existing luxury brands but offer the same quality and style.

At the same time, for Indian designers and brands who hope to make a global presence, Pitti Immagine may well prove to be the right place to be. With the menswear week in place in the fashion calendar, perhaps some of those are part of it should aim to be part of Pitti Immagine that attracts several reputed buyers from all across the world. Of course, one has to be different and be able to adapt to the needs of the European market to get past the strict jury panel. But once you do that, opportunities are immense in terms of growth potential.

Pitti Immagine has, in addition to its sprawling Uomo (men’s) area, also has a separate section for women. It will be an apt platform for those who want to market womenswear in Europe.