The Indian fashion industry has constantly opened its doors to opportunities every passing day. Looking back from where we stand today, we can certainly say that India has become a growing, aspirational market for luxury and fashion brands, while manifesting into a breeding ground for exponential growth in the future.
From Bollywood’s top notch celebrities introducing their clothing line to international collaborations and the entry of high-end luxury brands in India, this year has been full of surprises. As 2017 winds down, we have recapped its highlights to bring you seven standout moments in Indian fashion.
Bollywood Celebrities’ Fashion Empires
We all have been awe-struck by our favourite Bollywood stars’ personal sense of style. This year, it went beyond that when the fashionista-stylist duo Sonam Kapoor and Rhea Kapoor weaved their magic to launch Rheson. Aiming to be the home-grown answer to brands like Zara, Forever 21 and H&M, Rheson blends distinctive identity with worldwide appeal. The brand was made to allow girls to feel embraced by fashion and not be intimidated by it, no matter what your age or size because there’s ‘No Rheson you can’t’.
Starting their fashion kingdom with Shopper’s Stop, the brand soon established its presence on Amazon.
“Our top priority right now is to penetrate the brand across the country. In addition to Shoppers Stop, our presence on Amazon.in is definitely a step in that direction, considering the wide pan-India reach they provide especially in the Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets. Once that is achieved, global expansion will be the next priority. Once that is achieved, global expansion will be the next priority,” said Sonam in her interview to IANS.
In no time, Anushka Sharma introduced her signature clothing line, Nush, that tailors international high street fashion to Indian tastes, and quite recently, Alia Bhatt announced her collaboration with India’s first styling portal Stylecracker.
Well, aren’t these Rhesons enough to call for a celebration?
Zara’s Flagship Store Launch In Mumbai
High-street brand Zara surprised South Bombay’s shopaholics by launching its 51,300 sq. ft. flagship outlet near the iconic Flora Fountain. Reportedly, this is the largest overseas space-related agreement made by the label which is paying a whopping rent of 30 crores a year, with a minimum five year lock-in term. From Rs. 842.5 crores in FY 2016 to Rs. 1,023 crores in FY 2017, Zara has seen a significant growth in India by 21%.
“Asia region is among the fastest growing markets internationally and the company expects to retain their growth momentum in India”
said Jesús Echevarría, Chief Communications Officer of Inditex in one of his interviews . In 2010, this Spanish retail giant made its entry in India by opening one store. Today, it has expanded to 20 outlets across the country and has also launched an online store that enables fans to shop their wide range of clothes and accessories from the comfort of their homes.
Masaba Gupta X Titan Raga
Looks like Masaba Gupta has juggled many hats this year. She successfully launched a lipstick line, opened another store in Mumbai and made it to the Forbes 30 under 30 list. Well, it quite didn’t end here when the designer announced her collaboration with Titan Raga. The new collection blends Raga’s femininity and romance with the quirky, pop art signature look of Masaba and each timepiece has a distinctive story to tell.
Queen Mathilde Of Belgium In Anita Dongre’s Label
Ace designer Anita Dongre has become a favourite among royals since 2016 when the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton dazzled in a magnificent dress from Anita’s collection. Followed by which Queen Mathilde of Belgium too, chose an ethnic, floor-length dress in navy blue, one of the designer’s creations.
“It’s humbling to see Indian fashion being embraced by a global icon like her,”
said Anita Dongre in one of her interviews to Vogue.
While we have completely fallen head over heels in love with Anita’s collection, it’s a delight to many fashion connoisseurs to know that her work has stolen the hearts of many, not only in India but across the globe.
Sabyasachi Mukherjee & Christian Louboutin’s Exclusive Shoe Collection
It all started when the two coincidentally met at Sabyasachi’s boutique in Mumbai, and that led to an instant connection, followed by sharing love for India’s culture and magnificent artistry.
“Indian handicraft is the best of the best in the world. The luxuriance of Indian workmanship is at the maximum. I would love the world outside of India to love it as I do.”
said Christian in one of his statements to India Today.
Their latest collection features classic Louboutin styles that have been recreated and hand-crafted using Sabyasachi’s collection of exquisite sari fabrics. The exclusive shoe range includes fifteen styles for women and four for men, each pair is totally original and unique. Well, this wasn’t the first time the duo put on a good show together, they first collaborated in July 2015 to create the extraordinary shoes that walked the runway of Sabyasachi’s annual couture show in Mumbai. And again in October 2016, to make an exquisite range of Louboutin handbags.
After all, it’s rightly said that best things come in pairs!
Manish Arora’s ‘All We Need is Love’ Art Installation
‘All We Need is Love’ is inspired by Manish Arora’s life philosophy of looking at things in a positive way. One of his latest creations in collaboration with St+art India was Jindal Mansion in Mumbai, draped in vibrant colours. 6 months of ideating, 35 artisans and of course, all the hard work could be reflected on this beautiful installation. 2400 pieces created with yards of cloth, hand-embroidered and printed, were put together to achieve the finished look. In addition to this was the ‘Ready to Love’ mural with sparkling Swarovski crystals that enticed people to step into a world of emotions.
“In today’s social and political environment, it’s so important to remember that its (sic) love that makes us human and connects us all. I want people to stop and ponder when they look at the installation and for that one minute, feel pure unadulterated love,”
Welcoming Luxury Brands In Mumbai
Luxury has made India its home. From Versace, Armani and Gucci to Ermenegildo Zegna and Chanel, every brand has successfully found its place in our hearts. And the list doesn’t end here. The British fragrance house, Jo Malone recently made its way to India with their first store opening in South Bombay. High-street Spanish label, Massomi Dutti and French brand, Longchamp too, were happily welcomed in Mumbai this year.
Consumers’ growing appetite for all things luxury has enchanted several international brands to the country. As per the research by IBEF, India is predicted to become the 12th largest luxury retail market in the world by 2020.
We’re already wondering what’s in store next year!
Edited by: Mili Doshi