Helping readers cope with Indian wedding extravaganzas and keeping them, especially NRIs, abreast of the latest fashion and beauty trends, the country's wedding magazine market is slowly coming of age.
With growing fashion consciousness among young couples and the desire to host distinct celebrations, the number of wedding magazines has escalated to 10 on the newsstands.
Three of them were launched this year - Brides & Style, Marriage Mantra and Brides Now.
"The economic boom, availability of money with youth and their willingness to shell out extra bucks to look perfect on the day of marriage are the contributing factors to the increasing number of magazines available now," Raunaq Roy, editor of the Brides Now magazine of Ogaan Publications, told IANS.
"Moreover, the everyday attire of today's generation is no longer completely traditional. When it comes to wearing traditional outfits on the wedding day, no one wants to compromise on the look - traditional yet contemporary. Hence, not only the bride and bridegroom but also the guests refer to these magazines," she added.
These magazines give a glimpse of the latest in the wedding market ranging from bridal wear, trousseau packaging, jewellery, make-up to lifestyle products ranging from showpieces, cutlery, utensils, paintings, gift items and honeymoon packages.
Ogaan Publications has four lifestyle and wedding magazines in its stable. Of these, two - Elle and Elle Decor - are distributed in the US, Britain, East Africa, Hong Kong and the Middle East.
"They help NRIs and the stores keeping Indian bridal wear abroad. NRIs can have a look at the latest trends and feel close to their roots while store owners can keep the latest on their shelves," said Rohit Mona, the business head of Vintage Events.
"A global readership attracts great advertisements, which prove beneficial to both - the magazine and the advertising company."
The company comes up with three lifestyle and wedding magazines, which are distributed in the US, Britain and Sri Lanka and is planning to mark its presence in South Africa, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand by the end of 2009.
Mona is upbeat about the future of the country's wedding magazine market, which shares a symbiotic relationship with the wedding market, estimated at over Rs.1.25 trillion.
"The wedding magazine market has great potential but hasn't been tapped completely yet. Addressing niche readers it currently accounts for no less than Rs.1.5 billion and is growing at the rate of 20 percent per year.
"If it reaches the second rung cities then the growth rate is expected to increase up to 25 percent per annum in few years."
They also boost the visibility of designers and models globally.
"Wedding magazines are not only the need of the hour but also give great exposure to the designers and models featuring in these magazines, bagging them more work and popularity," said Kavita Bhartiya, vice chairperson of Ogaan Publications.
Added designer Anand Kabra: "They increase the visibility of a designer's work and help increase our clientele."
Agreed model Manasvi: "It gives a great boost to the career. You get a lot of work after featuring in these magazines. For instance, after I figured in Elle I got the Fair & Lovely advertisement."