India’s first Men’s Fashion Week on, despite economic meltdown

December 8th, 2008 - 10:12 am ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Dec 8 (IANS) At a time of financial crisis when the whole world is engaged in cost cutting, the Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI) has decided to go ahead with its plans of organizing the country’s first Men’s Fashion Week - but with slight changes in the dates.”The global meltdown has definitely hit our niche market, but as a fashion body we have to find different ways of generating business for our designers,” FDCI president Sunil Sethi told IANS.

“The Men’s Fashion Week is on but we are making changes in the dates as it was earlier scheduled for February but now we are planning to club it with the India Fashion Week in March.

“This will benefit buyers because in the time of economic crisis, it would not be good to first invite them in February for the Men’s Fashion Week and then again in March for the India Fashion Week. We have to also see their convenience,” Sethi explained.

The FDCI board is now considering two options: either to conduct the Men’s Fashion Week at the beginning or end of the India Fashion Week or run it simultaneously with the main event at an adjacent location.

“The board is still discussing different possibilities and very soon we are going to take a final call on this,” Sethi informed.

The men’s fashion market is a very niche territory in India and the choices are very limited, especially when it comes to choosing designer wear for a formal event.

Brands like Reid and Taylor, and Raymonds fall into the category of exclusive men’s fashion brands, but if one wants to opt for a designer label, the choices are restricted to bridal wear only.

Elaborating on this, Sethi stated: “There is tremendous scope for men’s fashion in India, but we are neglecting this sector big time as not many designers display their men’s collections at their stores and even if they do, it is a sherwani or an achkan range.”

“The choices are very limited as men’s fashion here is only about brands and that too you can count on one hand. There are not many big players in the market. Our attempt will be to tap domestic buyers because the time has come when one has to understand the hidden potential this market has,” he explained of the Men’s Fashion Week concept.

Talking about the response of designers for this new initiative, Sethi said that around 30 of them have shown interest in the new plan and are even saying that “this is just the beginning”.

“Our aim is to put India in the global map and we want every nation to see us as the ultimate fashion destination. For this, we want to leave no stone unturned,” Sethi maintained.

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