Designers like Abraham and Thakore, Anju Modi, Ashish Soni, JJ Valaya and Payal Jain are among those who will celebrate a quarter century in the industry with their works at the forthcoming Amazon India Fashion Week (AIFW) Spring/Summer 2018. They feel the Indian design industry has evolved over the years and it is now time for young designers to stop looking at Paris and Milan for inspiration -- and look within.
"I think it's important for every designer to stick to the core. It's important to create a world that is relevant within our space and it's not necessary to look outside. We don't need to look at Paris and Milan because they are irrelevant to India. Fashion designers in India should be relevant to India," David Abraham of the brand Abraham and Thakore told IANS.
The brand is a respected design resource for fashion and accessories as well as textile products for the home. To celebrate 25 years, the brand will showcase a line titled #blockblackwhite, which has the wood block and the irregularity of handmade textile in focus.
Abraham feels Indian designers are "completely spoiled" in terms of availability of block printers, embroideries and weavers.
"We are the most privileged designers in the world," said Abraham, who is one among the five veteran designers to whom the 30th edition of the fashion event will pay a tribute by giving them a platform to celebrate their silver jubilee in the industry.
Sunil Sethi, President of the Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI), the country's apex fashion body which organises the AIFW bi-annually, feels fashion is an evolving sphere, but it has a fulcrum on which it rotates.
"And this nerve centre is the fashion industry's legends, who have contributed to its growth in more ways than one. This season, we salute them in our unique way," he said.
Ace designer Suneet Varma will celebrate his 30 years in the design-o-sphere with the Amazon India grand finale presentation at the AIFW.
"What excites me about the industry currently is that all the young talents want to make a difference in the industry with new thoughts, ideas and inspirations," Varma told IANS.
Talking about his big comeback, he said that he has not shown at an FDCI event for at least 10 years. So, it's big for him. "I also want to address the future of Indian couture. I feel it should not only and always be bridal. There is a massive difference between traditional and couture."
Payal Jain, who is going to showcase "Forbidden Love" at the fashion gala, has come a long way in 25 years and is synonymous with a classic and timeless signature style, where each ensemble created is an enriched synthesis of heritage fabrics and craftsmanship.
She feels that in the last decade, there has been a huge change in the design industry.
"We are looking at out heritage, crafts and textiles, and I think it's fantastic. I really hope young designers who are getting into design spaces will look at Indian heritage and textile for experimentation and re-use it and give back to the society. They should not just worry about their own business," Jain told IANS.
Designer Ashish Soni also feels the change in fashion industry is apparent over the years.
"With foreign brands coming in, malls opening up and consumers becoming more aware, everything is progressing," Ashish told IANS.
He is going to create an all-black line for this season.
"This collection celebrates the colour black in all its guises, but, more importantly, serves as a tribute to the signature style of our brand.
"For me, the colour black is a vibrant colour or non-colour, whichever way you would like to look at it. I have tried to highlight its simplicity by using over 30 different textured black fabrics so that nothing appears flat and boring," he added.
(Nivedita can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)