The Kid is the King, and how!

It is the largest fash­ion show for kids in Asia and Heer P Kothari gives a spe­cial in­sight on the In­dia Kids Fash­ion Week which was held on Jan­uary 18-19, 2014 at The Lalit Mum­bai.

Apparel - - Contents -

As teenagers, we let our imag­i­na­tion run wild—imag­in­ing our­selves walk­ing the fash­ion run­ways, ex­ud­ing glam­our. Lit­tle did we imag­ine that there would come a time when kids would be the new show­stop­pers! The In­dia Kids Fash­ion Week 2014 (IKFW) was sym­bolic of young minds and how they wish to por­tray them­selves in to­day’s day and age. The show was brought to life with an ar­ray of kids prod­ucts and ap­parel be­ing show­cased by the star teeny­bop­pers them­selves. And the kids sure did ex­ude con­fi­dence as they walked the ramp; rep­re­sen­ta­tive of to­day’s gen­er­a­tion.

THE PAR­TIC­I­PANTS

The event, in its sec­ond sea­son this year, wit­nessed par­tic­i­pa­tion by renowned names, such as, Max, OKS BOYS, Sheetal, Libero, Bee­bay, ShoSho Bella, Sheena Cre­ations, Kirti Rathore, Nishka Lulla, Pooja Jhun­jhun­wala and Kan­chan Bawa. Spread over two days, this was in­deed a star-stud­ded af­fair with celebri­ties join­ing hands with the kids and

de­sign­ers. Mandira Bedi, Vivek Oberoi, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Jimmy Shergill, Aditi Gow­itrikar, Sarah-Jane Dias, Ar­maan Ma­lik, Anushka Ran­jan and many other well-known faces added to the glam­our of the spec­tac­u­lar evenings here. The venue (The Lalit Mum­bai) came alive with a blast of colours, ap­parel, toys, games and all the other things that make the life of a child beau­ti­ful and mem­o­rable. The IKFW thus, re­de­fined fash­ion for the fu­ture of the coun­try with panache.

THE FASH­ION IN­DUS­TRY FOR KIDS YIELDS A MIN­I­MUM OF R85,000 CRORES, EACH YEAR. IN ASIA, IN­DIA IS CON­SID­ERED TO BE THE LARGEST MAR­KET FOR KIDS’ FASH­ION.

THE PREPA­RA­TIONS

Prepa­ra­tions for the event be­gan months in ad­vance. On­line reg­is­tra­tions made par­tic­i­pa­tion for kids from var­i­ous parts of the coun­try very easy. “The on­line reg­is­tra­tion was a breeze. My sis­ter was en­rolled within min­utes for the au­di­tion of the event. People who con­ducted these au­di­tions were very cor­dial and guided us ap­pro­pri­ately with re­gards to the rules and pro­ceed­ings. The gar­ments too, were given on time. Nu­mer­ous re­hearsals post the au­di­tions, also en­abled the chil­dren to de­velop a cer­tain de­gree of con­fi­dence,” stated Heena Surti, Stu­dent, and sis­ter of Keeya Surti (model for Bee­bay).

THE MAR­KET

The fash­ion in­dus­try for kids yields a min­i­mum of 85,000 crores, each year. Brands like Tommy Hil­figer, Bul­garia, Roberto Cavalli, Chloe, Paul Smith, Diesel and many oth­ers are a part of this yield. How­ever in Asia, In­dia is per­ceived to be the largest mar­ket for kids’ fash­ion. In In­dia, we earn as much as 38,000 crores of the to­tal mar­ket yield, mak­ing us one of the big­gest hubs in the kids’ fash­ion in­dus­try. Pankaj Khanna tells us why we have suc­cess­fully ac­quired this sta­tus, as he states, “In­dia’s dy­namic cul­ture has a big role to play in the suc­cess of this in­dus­try. Firstly, our de­sign­ers are able to show­case a va­ri­ety of prod­ucts, which would, for in­stance, in­clude party-wear, ca­sual wear, western for­mals, In­dian for­mals, Ara­bic styling and much more. Sec­ondly, In­dian par­ents are ready to spend a de­cent amount of money to make their kids look good. Thirdly, cloth­ing brands for kids (in In­dia) do not pinch one’s pocket as hard as some of the in­ter­na­tional brands (which is why they don’t seem to work as well). De­sign­ers in In­dia are con­sciously aware that kids are go­ing to out­grow their clothes in some­time and their par­ents wouldn’t want to pay a huge amount for some­thing that they will not be able to use in the long run. Hence, the pric­ing is pretty rea­son­able for some­thing that im­bues bet­ter qual­ity.”

DE­SIGNER SPEAK

Mansi Ka­pa­dia, De­signer, Sheetal, says, “To­day’s kids are more aware of what they are wear­ing. They are con­scious of how they are car­ry­ing them­selves and have a very em­phatic say on what they are go­ing to wear and what not. The ex­act rea­son for their aware­ness can­not be pin­pointed; there are many rea­sons that one can be at­trib­uted to the same, which mainly in­clude me­dia ex­po­sure,

peer pres­sure, or mere im­i­ta­tion of their par­ents or people in their im­me­di­ate sur­round­ings.” Ac­cord­ing to Kan­chan Bawa, who par­tic­u­larly de­signs for lit­tle girls, “I de­sign for the girl child. Her dreams are short-lived as they are; at times, tram­pled over by grue­some hap­pen­ings in the so­ci­ety. How­ever, through my cre­ations, I con­vey that she is a princess for­ever.” On fur­ther inquiring why other cel­e­brated de­sign­ers are not look­ing at the suc­cess of this in­dus­try, we learn, “The kids’ fash­ion in­dus­try has wit­nessed a slow and steady pro­gres­sion over the last five years and will con­tinue to grow in the years to come. Like ev­ery teething child, the in­dus­try is fac­ing its chal­lenges and some of the big­ger names are yet to ex­per­i­ment with the chal­lenges they could face when it comes to kids’ wear,” adds Bawa.

WE ARE LOOK­ING AT MORE THAN JUST A FASH­ION WEEK FOR KIDS IN THE FORTH­COM­ING SEA­SON. THE IKFW WILL MAKE SURE THAT MORE SUCH EVENTS ARE HELD IN VAR­I­OUS PARTS OF THE COUN­TRY TO EN­SURE BET­TER REACH AND VIS­I­BIL­ITY.

At times, some of the well known de­sign­ers also out­source the kids’ wear jobs to lesser known de­sign­ers, which gives rise to an­other di­men­sion in this seg­ment of the fash­ion in­dus­try. It is in­ter­est­ing to learn that many de­sign­ers who deliver to a niche seg­ment get or­ders for ‘fa­ther-son-look-alikes’ or moth­er­daugh­ter-look-alikes,’ too. We are look­ing at more than just a fash­ion week for kids in the forth­com­ing sea­sons. The In­dia Kids Fash­ion Week will make sure that more such events are held in var­i­ous parts of the coun­try, to en­sure bet­ter reach and vis­i­bil­ity. The fu­ture sea­sons of the IKFW will also be more in­volved on the busi­ness front with the kids be­gin­ning to use this fash­ion week as a plat­form through which they could prob­a­bly learn mod­el­ing and even kick-start their ca­reers.

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