Remember the most popular phrase from the Lakme Fashion Week in Mumbai in March? It was ‘wardrobe malfunction’: the incident in which a Bennu Sehgall dress slipped off model Carol Gracias while she was on the runway.
This time around, the organisers are wary. So much so, that they say that were such a thing to happen again, the lights will be immediately switched off. The show, too, may be cancelled.
In the 28-point guidelines (with HT Style) sent to participating designers before the show, Point No. 27 reads: “In case of any unfavourable incident on the catwalk lights will be cut off from the control console and we shall retain the right to decide whether to continue with the show”. The last point (in bold) says: “Models should wear nipple tapes during shows”.
Last time, apart from the incident with the Bennu Sehgall dress, a Laschelle Symons outfit that model Gauhar Khan was wearing on the runway split at the rear, exposing more of the model than was deemed suitable.
Two things had been much talked about in the wake of these incidents. First, there had been discussions about the quality of craftsmanship of the dresses in question, suggesting that the work on them had been shoddy enough for them to have come apart on the runway. Secondly, there had been discussions about the slapdash manner in which fittings had been organised before the show.
On both counts, the guidelines are pretty firm this time. One of the guidelines says: “Show directors will identify during fittings any garment that that they find tricky and risky to be worn on the run way.”
The guideline goes on to mention: “Every garment should be of a certain craftsmanship and quality.” As if that was not enough, here is the closing section from the particular guideline: “Any garment that is not complete or the alterations have not been executed to the model’s requirement will not be worn by the latter at the show”.