Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Indian Fashion

India is a country that will leave you spellbound with its alluring contrasts and striking features in all that it beholds! Its captivating beauty lies in its ‘unity in diversity’, cosmopolitan culture and rich heritage. India is a beautiful motif of various colors; all complementing each other to attract the eye of the beholder! Fashion in India holds different connotations for different Indians across the country. Foreign influences and globalization are factors that have changed the definition of fashion in the country and yet Indian traditional garments have made a mark for themselves in the international market.

Fashion in India is like a beautiful catalogue of unity in diversity.Fashion in India is as diverse as it can get. Rural areas and urban cities dressing style vary a lot. This is because of the cosmopolitan nature of the crowd, foreign influences and the liberal socio-economic pace. Metro fashions in India for men and women bear the distinct imprint of the western world. Men and women are seen wearing the latest western wear like trousers, shirts and skirts. A blend of western and ethnic wear usually dominates formal occasions in the big cities. Fashionable clothes are seen more in the four metros of India and people are seen spending heavily on clothes designed by famous fashion designers of India.

Fashion in India seems to have taken a big jump from the year 2000 with the India fashion weeks being held to celebrate the national fashion spirit of the country. India is no longer the place to source exotic textile and embroidery only. Indian designers are now going global. Indian clothing like the saris and the salwar kameez are receiving global attention and more and more people are being fascinated with the same.The concept of Indian institute of fashion designing has also carved a special niche in the global fashion fraternity. Students from various fashion institutes across the country are given fantastic opportunities in and outside the country.

Fashion designing in India has become big business in recent years. Famous Indian designers like Ritu Beri, Kiran Uttan Ghosh, Manish Arora, Ashish Soni, Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Narendra Kumar Mehtani, Manish Malhotra, Priyadarshini Rao, Surily Goel and Sonal Dubal are shown participating in International fashion events again and again. Paris coutre fashion week, Rome fashion week, London fashion week and the New York fashion week have all set the stage for Indian fashion designers in recent years. Number of invitations is received by leading Indian fashion designers to show their creations abroad.With globalization, India has surely benefited in the field of fashion too. India is now being seen as a platform for fashionable and designer innovative garments. Indian cities like Mumbai and Delhi have been mainly responsible to bring Indian fashion in the global fashion industry.

Indian Clothing

India is truly a nation which symbolizes ‘unity in diversity’ phenomenon. Just as it many so many states, languages, religions, it has its different yet peculiar clothing. Indian clothing or dresses represents its culture and tradition. Indian clothes will change with different states and cities.

Clothing in India is usually bright and colorful especially for women. One might see a huge difference in terms of clothing as one travels from the urban areas to the rural ones. Urban Indian clothing has changes in the past few decades and has become more contemporary at par with the global fashion. In rural areas, people still wear traditional dresses according to their cultures.Indian clothing for women is something that allures almost everyone’s attention. It is one of the most sensuous yet serene clothing throughout the globe. The sari that is worn by Indian women is considered to be one of the most elegant and beautiful dresses in the world. A sari is a long piece of cloth that is wrapped by in different styles. The salwar kameez is also another dress form popular for females. It consists of a loose trouser and a long loose shirt with a dupataa around it. The clothing from India especially the Indian drapes and folds have captured the glamorous platform of global fashion with its enchanting detailing and concepts in recent years.

The women in parts of Rajasthan and Gujrat wear traditional dresses known as the ‘lehenga choli’. A ‘lehenga’ is a colorful long skirt while a ‘choli’ is like a short top. These women also cover their heads with a cloth known as the ‘odhani’ which is quite similar to the ‘dupataa’. Tribal women in India wear unique costumes, which are woven, styled and colored in their own traditional style. India women’s clothing might change with changing states however; its essence and its beauty will be seen all across the country. Indian women are also known for their heavy ornamentation.

Like men across the globe, most Indian men wear pants and shirts. Rural men may be found in something called as a ‘dhoti’ which is a cloth draped around the legs. A long loose shirt which is known as a ‘kurta’ is also wore by some Indian men. Indian wedding dresses are famous for their dazzling beauty and embroidery all over the world. One can see a typical Indian bride in an ornamented ‘Ghaghara’ (skirt) worn with a beautiful ‘choli’ and an ‘odhani’ on her wedding day. This is usually accompanied with heavy gold jewelry studded with colored stones. Bridal attire also varies with caste and class in Indian society. Some brides are required to wear and drape saris woven in their community traditions on their wedding. Men traditionally wear what is known as a ‘sherwani’ with a scarf and a bright turban on their wedding day.With every Indian city that one goes to, one will find a fresh tinge of color in its clothing and yet the core or the essence will always remain same throughout the country.

Indian wedding dresses

Since India is a country with such diverse backgrounds, Indian wedding dresses also differ from places to places, religion to religion but the essence however remains the same. Indian weddings are full of pompous glitz and showy glamour. There is also diversity in the way Indian marriages are celebrated. They are colorful, grand and loud. The Indian wedding season is around November-December which is surely an experience to oneself. One gets to see the best of Bollywood songs, Filmi-style dancing and lip smacking food to relish and some wonderful clothing!

Indian clothing for women is something that allures almost everyone’s attention. It is one of the most sensuous yet serene clothing throughout the globe. The sari that is worn by Indian women is considered to be one of the most elegant and beautiful dresses in the world. A sari is a long piece of cloth that is wrapped by in different styles. Designer worked saris are something that is most commonly found in Indian weddings.

Amongst the common wedding dresses worn by the bride is the Ghagra Choli. This garment consists of a long skirt and short blouse with a long scarf known as a dupataa draped around. This garment is usually created in silk or other materials that have such an effect. The entire garment is highlighted with embossed embroidery work in gold or silver wires, stones and sequences such as the zardosi work. Along with this, heavy Indian chunky matching jewellery is worn to adorn the bride. The jewellery consists of bangles, necklace, earrings, anklets, teeka etc. Indian wedding dresses are usually very colorful with intricate designs and embroidery

Grooms wear different kinds of clothes in different parts of India. In the South, grooms either wear the traditional dhoti and kurta or three-piece suits. Grooms in the north wear a sherwani with a chudidar pajama, or a western-style suit. Turbans are also very popular, for the groom and the important members of his family.

In northern part of India most women also opt for heavy embroidered salwar kameez with a dupataa. The salwar kameez is a long tunic over pants. It too has the dupataa. Indian wedding dresses are often a combination of intricate patterns, beads, sequins, embroidery etc and are made of a fabric that reflects light well such as satin, silk, or chiffon. Most of the Indian wedding dresses are colorful with red being the popular color. This is because red is suppose to bring happiness in the life of the couple.

Since Indian weddings are grand and are celebrated vividly, it is not just the bride and the groom that are to be dressed heavily but all the family members and close friends also dress with colorful traditional Indian dresses like the ghagra choli or indo western outfits with Indian embroidery on it. Indian weddings are surely an occasion to splurge and indulge in fashion.

Bollywood and Indian Fashion

Fashion and Bollywood go hand in hand. Bollywood inspires fashion and creates trend making them popular at the same time, Bollywood actors and actresses seek fashion from professional designers. India fashion is become a rage in the international market and Bollywood is sure responsible for taking India and its clothing amongst the foreign countries through various films. At the same time, a lot of international fashion also inspires Bollywood and related fields.

Bollywood stars become role models amongst the common masses and the youth surely apes the clothes worn by Bollywood heroes and heroines. A lot of Indian fashion designers have designed clothes for Bollywood actors and have also helped in giving specific looks required for specific films. For example fashion designed Manish Malhotra designed the clothing for the film ‘mohobbatein’ promoting low necklines. Recent films like ‘Bunty and Babli’, Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna, Veer Zarra, Hum Tum, Don has surely showcased some of the latest trends in fashion and the common masses have surely followed the Indian fashion fads. In early Bollywood days as well, Dev Anand popularized full sleeves top collared shirts. Leg-hugging pajamas and no side-split kurtis were a rage with college girls in 60s.

Most famous Bollywood directors and fashion designers join hands together to create clothing line for a particular film. Bollywood is sometimes like a big stage that gives platform for designers so that their work gets known amongst the masses. A lot of jewellery and accessory designers are also tying up with specific films to show their collection. Bollywood is surely the best source to know what the latest fashion trend is. Bollywood has also inspired international fashion with Indian zardosi saris and other rich embroidered Indian work. Bollywood fashion is becoming more and hotter by the day.

Indian heroes have been responsible to popularize fashion for men across the country. Most men have seen Bollywood films to realize how fashion is important for the male sex as well. A recent study said that Bollywood can be a means for the booming Indian retail trade sector and push for merchandise sales worth over four billion dollars in the next two years.

What Bollywood does now-a-days is that it makes fashionable clothes more commercial through films rather than introducing new designs on the ramp. Bollywood is definitely the largest fashion guide with so many people being influenced from it!

India Fashion week

Fashion in India has emerged and has come a long way. Many people of prime importance have joined hands to come up with fashion shows and fashion weeks. This would not only give them exposure but also help to widen their consumer base. In 1988, the fashion design council of India (FCDI) was formed to represent the business interest of the designer fraternity. As they realized the need to grow, FDCI launched the fashion week for the first time in India. This served as a single platform for interaction with the fashion industry. The event was titled as India fashion week and it represented the national spirit of the fashion industry.

Lakme India fashion week was organized for the first time in New Delhi in 2000. Lakme India fashion week gave an excellent opportunity to Indian fashion designers to showcase their work. The fashion fair was open to visitors with invitations only. There were more that 33 designers from all over the country that showcased their work and as many as more than 15,000 visitors came to watch the fashion shows. In all there were 36 models that walked on the ramp.

The designers who showcased their work at the event were Ranna gill, Ritu Beri, Wendell Roderick, Tarun Tahiliani, Anamika Khanna, Aki Narula, Muzaffar Ali, Anshu Arora Sen, Manish Arora, Malini, Ramani and Rajesh Pratap Singh and many more. Most of the dressed showcased in the India fashion week were very elegant and wearable.

From then on, every year India fashion week is celebrated. The second India fashion week that was sponsored by Lakme was held in Mumbai at Taj lands end. This event too was organized by the fashion design council of India.

In 2006, the FDCI along with percept which were partners in implementing the India fashion week appointed Wills Lifestyle as their official sponsor for the event. The event represented the national scope of the fashion industry ion the country and unlike fashion weeks that were held internationally which are city based, India fashion week represented the collective spirit of the nation. The event promoted India’s best and trendiest clothing. J. J. Valaya, Ritu Kumar, Rohit Gandhi, Satya Paul etc all represented their work.

India fashion week has indeed proved to make India a name popular in the international fashion industry. It has brought together many fashion designers, garment houses and the consumer in general. It truly celebrates the collective fashion spirit of the nation.

Fashion for Indian Men

In earlier days, fashion was a word often related to women. However the term fashion today has new connotations. Fashion of men is gaining more and more importance across the globe and India too is witnessing the same. Be it clothes, footwear, accessories, bags, glasses etc, the term fashion has entered the minds of Indian men in all respects. Urban fashion for men is modernistic and hip-hop style-like. Fashion for Indian men includes things that are stylish, durable and comfortable.

While deciding on what is in store in fashion for Indian men, it is important to know what the occasion that the man is dressing for is. For parties or special occasion, being a little trendy and giving a metro sexual touch to ones attire is cool. However if the event is a formal one, sober, decent and presentable clothing should be preferred. Everything should be special from head to toe. For men it is important to maintain a nice hairstyle, neat shoes and fashionable accessories that suits ones personality.

Men should also know what suits their body and personality. It is important to know that blindly following fashion trends is not what makes one truly fashionable, it is realization of your body and personality type and dressing up right for the right occasion. Little petty things can also make a big difference to ones styling. First impression is the last impression hence it is necessary to make efforts on ones attire.

Perfumes, belts, caps, waist bands, hair bands, cufflinks, laptop bags, cigar boxes, wallets, sunglasses, watches etc are some of the common accessories that all men should possess. Men fashion apparel list includes formal office wear business attire, informal casual informal clothing like funky cargo pants, T-shirt, jeans etc. Designer sweaters, leather jackets, pullovers etc can also be used according to the weather.

Indian ethnic section for men consists of fashionable sherwani, Jodhpur suits, silk kurta etc. It can seen prominently during Indian weddings and festivals. These should be teamed with the right accessories Men are now exploring the jewelry section consisting of men bracelets, earring, chains, and pendants etc.

Men also need to give considerable attention to their shoes. Leather shoes, winter boots, floaters, slippers, sport shoes etc should be carefully selected. Shoes should not just be stylish but comfort and practical usage is also necessary
Kurtas teamed with denims is also quite the latest fashion trend for young boys. These are not just cool and comfortable but also look stylish and different. Fashion for Indian men has huge scope and designers across the globe are putting their best effort to bring this out as a niche segment.

Fashion Institutes in India

Fashion is such a term that constantly changes and is most commonly used in relation to clothes, dresses, garments, textiles, etc. Fashion designing as a career has emerged as one of the most popular careers amongst the youths. A career in fashion design not only involves interacting with rich and famous but also gives an opportunity to the creative flair of the people who possess a sense of style and efficacy.

Fashion designers create designs for men, women, and children. As a fashion student, one needs to keep in mind that while creating a garment for a client, it is necessary to interact with the client to know what kind of choice and liking does he or she prefer, what fabrics or colors will suit their body type and would they be comfortable in a particular dress.

A Fashion designer should not only be artistic and creative but they should be able to express their ideas in sketches. Along with good visual imagination, a fashion designer should possess the ability to know the effective use of textiles that are to be used.
As a fashion designer, one must be aware of market requirements. Besides this they should be able to distinguish among various fabrics. Some of the famous fashion institutes in India are:

· National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) NIFT Campus, Haus Khas, New Delhi-210016.

· National Institute of Design (NID) Paldi, Ahmedabad-380007

· International Institute of Fashion Technology H-22, South Extension Part-I, New Delhi-210049

· Mangalore Institute of Fashion Technology (MIFT) Kulai, Mangalore-574196

· Wigan Fashion School Wigan & Leigh College (India) Ltd., 401-402 Skipper Comer, 88 Nehru Place, New Delhi-210019

· National Institute of Fashion Design NIFD Campus, 2-B Jal Bhawan, M.Marg, Sector-27-A, Chandigarh

· J D Institute of Fashion Technology D-247, Savitri Path, Bapu Nagar, Jaipur

· Apeejay Institute of Design 54, Tughlakabad Institutional Area, MB Road, New Delhi-210062

· Sophia B.K. Somani Polytechnics 10, Bhulabhai Desai Road, Mumbai-400026

Some of the sectors involved in fashion industry are sketching assistants, cutting assistants, fashion marketers, merchandisers, production manager, fashion co-coordinators, export houses, textile designers etc. There are opportunities for work with the various sectors dealing with fashion. Export houses dealing with garment, retail and wholesale garment businesses, textile manufacturers, boutiques and designer studios, fashion show organizers.

Indian Fashion Designers

With globalization and opening up of the Indian economy, Indian fashion designers have several opportunities for their growth. Indian fashion industry is rapidly growing everyday. Indian fashion designers are combining western trends with Indian touch. These garments are truly outstanding and helped India to make a name for itself in the international fashion industry.

Indian fashion designers have surely made a name for themselves in the fashion industry world over. The craze for Indian garments like the sari and the salwar kameez in foreign countries is because Indian fashion designers have taken Indian fashion abroad.

Indian fashion designers are expressing their creativity at its best. They are combining various fabrics to give excellent collection of dresses. Fashion designers today are expressing their imaginations best on clothes. A fashion designer has to be fashion savvy and the knowledge and experience of basic skills and techniques is a must.

More and more fashion designers are trying to be innovative with their works. Custom made outfits and designer dresses are something that most people look for. The media also plays an important role in the fashion industry and good coverage is provided to the fashion world through films.

Some of the famous Indian fashion designers are Aki Narula, Abu Jani & Sandeep Khosla, Anamika Khanna, Anita Dongre, Anna Singh, Surily Goel, Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Ritu Beri, Neeta Lulla, Vikram Phadnis, Manish Malhotra, Anchal Kumar, Wendell Roderick, Ashish Soni, Sonal Dubal, Kiran Uttan Ghosh, Narendra Kumar Mehtani, Priyadarshini Rao, Rohit Bal, Geetanjali Kashyap, Hemant Tridevi, J J. Valaya, Krishna Mehta, Lina Tipnis, Malini Ramani, Priyanka Modi, Rina Dhaka, Rocky S, Raghavendra Rathore, Satya Paul, Shantanu Goenka, Tarun Tahiliani, Vijay Arora and many more.

Fashion designers have contributed greatly to create an international market for Indian clothes. Thanks to the Indian fashion designers, India now enjoys a prominent place in the international market with its traditional handloom fabrics, excellent quality silks, satins and vibrant dyes.

Fashion trends are such that they constantly change and Indian fashion designers make a constant effort to keep themselves updated with these trends. The people in the merchandising and marketing of fashion garments need to have a good knowledge of fashion trends and fashion fads.

Fashion designing as a career has surely become a viable option for aspiring designers. The field not just offers good remuneration but also provides with the excitement and glamour at the same time. With the increase in demand for the professional fashion designers, the salaries and remuneration are very likely to increase further.

The top Indian fashion designers are highly original and innovative. Most of the crème-de-la-crème of the society opts for designer wear from the fashion designer’s personal studio.

Latest Fashion Trends

Fashion trends keep changing and most fashion divas and models are the one to make them. The youth is a major follower of fashion trends. Fashion trends also get influenced from Bollywood as well as Hollywood. Metros like Mumbai and Delhi witness the quick changes in fashion especially in college going crowds.

The latest in fashion trends are crushed low bottom denim wear and trendy fitting tops. Low cut jeans have still survived in the trend. Low cut jeans visually lengthen the torso and have a slimming effect. Fashion models and Bollywood heroines are like role models as far as fashion trends are concerned. Low cut jeans also give a feminine touch with an attitude.

Apart from the jeans, a lot of women are now buying semi formal kurtis which very well go with the jeans and gives an indo western touch to it. Also, kurtis can be very comfortable for people who want to wear it for long hours. People in advertising agencies where dress code are not that strict prefer wearing these kurtis. Latest fashion world is seeing new colors such as beige, chocolate, peach, rose pink, dusty pink, pale olive green, taupe, ochre, gold, misty khaki, military green, soft blue grey, light blue, poppy red etc especially in Asian tops and t-shirts.

A lot of bronze and gold inspired women accessories are seen on the ramp. Most Indian models are opting for the blended look with Indian accessories and western clothing. This has given the Indian fashion industry a new name and stand in international fashion. Nose rings, tattoos and body piercing are the latest fashion trends. However these trends are a fad and are influenced from the western culture. Finger rings, toe rings and anklets too are traditional Indian ornaments but are more prominently used in urban India as trendy fashion accessories.

Latest fashion trends for men are those that inspire a more metro-sexual look. Men can now flaunt their pink shirts and floral design kurtas. Colors like purple, yellow, pink etc are now worn by men. Also more and more men are seen accessorizing. Men have started to use to hair band and the wear one earring. Neck pieces for men have also been very innovative and today’s man surely can boast of spending hours into his shopping.

Fabrics that are forever in trends are soft cotton, linen and silk. These are ever green materials and can be worn on any day of the year. However fabrics like the crushed cotton and synthetics change with time.

Latest fashion trends also inspire women to carry trendy and oversized bags and fashionable pointed shoes. For women, apart from denims, a lot many types of skirts are also in fashion trend; especially the ghagra-style skirts which are very popularly seen in the rural India. Most models advice people that one should sure follow the fashion trend but it is however necessary to know what suits ones body type and what looks good on one.

Fashion Accessories in India

Apart from clothing, accessories are also an important part in fashion. The way accessories change the appearance and persona of a person can indeed be observed. No doubt, most fashion designers lay so much importance to accessories. Both men and women need to accessorize themselves according to the occasion.

Apart from make up and clothes, fashion accessories are gaining more and more importance in India. Earrings, waist bands, necklaces, scarves, purses etc are some of the items women can accessorize themselves with. Some accessories like bandannas, hair bands, caps, watches, belts, sunglasses are used by both men and women as a mark of fashion. Men can also use designer cufflinks, ties, coin holders, designer bags, wallets to add to the overall attire.

In today’s world, it is very important to be presentable and up-to-date. Like the common adage goes ‘First impression is your last impression’ holds very much true in this case.
To be practical, whether a man or a woman, one is noticed from head to toe and fashion accessories are surely monitored to judge the person.

It is also important to use fashion accessories according to the occasion. For example a woman going for an interview should not wear chunky jewellery; instead a sober sophisticated look is appreciated. Light colored office bags and formal shows should be used as accessories. Small pretty earrings can also be worn along with a matching pendant. One can also take advantage if the weather to accessorize oneself. For example, in winters one can use designer shawls, gloves, jackets, pullovers etc while in a rainy season using matching umbrellas or windcheaters can also be used to make a fashion statement.

Now-a-days, nose rings, tattoos and body piercing are also done to make fashion statements. However these trends are a fad and are influenced from the western culture. Finger rings, toe rings and anklets too are traditional Indian accessories but are more prominently used by many Indian models and have been looked upon as trendy fashion accessories.

There are a lot of personal grooming and training institutes that advices people about what kind of fashion accessories to carry and what to avoid during what kind of occasions. However, there is no standardization where accessories are concerned.

It is not just important not individuals to be aware of what accessories should be carried not what occasion, but aspiring fashion designers need to learn all the categories of accessories and be able to advice what accessory looks good on different people. This is because a large number of people are dependent on guidance when buying accessories and before advising them on the fashion accessories it is necessary to understand their needs for the products and then suggest in accordance.