10 facts about In­dia Cou­ture Week as it cel­e­brates 10 years

The cou­ture week be­came so pop­u­lar that five days and ten de­sign­ers were not enough. So, the Delhi edi­tion took off af­ter the Mum­bai one SU­NIL SETHI, DE­SIGNER

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In­dia Cou­ture Week marks a decade of ex­is­tence this year. One per­son who has been with this gamechang­ing event since its in­cep­tion is Fashion De­sign Coun­cil of In­dia pres­i­dent, Su­nil Sethi. “Ten years ago, no­body wanted to as­so­ciate with In­dian clothes. And now look where we have reached!,” Sethi says, with a voice laced with pride. As cou­ture comes of age in In­dia, here are ten things that shaped its suc­cess.

1 It all started in Mum­bai: The first edi­tion of the cou­ture week was held in a five-star ho­tel in Mum­bai, in 2008. “The con­cept of cou­ture was so new that it was lapped up by the who’s who of Bom­bay,” Sethi tells us.

2 Match­ing anniversaries: “Cou­ture Week took place the first year I be­came pres­i­dent of FDCI. That’s the rea­son I con­sider an even closer as­so­ci­a­tion with it,” Sethi says. 3

Set-ting a bench­mark: “Up un­til then, mas­sive sets only ex­isted for fi­nales. But to have each show seem like a fi­nale for its op­u­lence was some­thing un­heard of,” he adds.

4 An of­fi­cial visit: Cou­ture Week also got ac­knowl­edge­ment when Shankersinh Vaghela, the then Min­is­ter of Tex­tiles, vis­ited the event.

5 Khan strong: It’s im­pos­si­ble to think of a flurry of big stars at­tend the same event, let

alone share the same stage. But in 2009, cou­ture week made it pos­si­ble. “We had Sal­man Khan, Ka­t­rina Kaif, Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan, — all of them were pre­sent on the same run­way in 2009,” Sethi says. And, Shah Rukh joined the af­ter-party.

6 The Sal­man Khan con­nect: Not only was Reshma Shetty, for­mer man­ager of Sal­man mon­u­men­tal in tack­ling the op­er­a­tional part of the cou­ture week, but the event also saw the launch of Sal­man’s Be­ing Hu­man line.

7 A two-city game: Pop­u­lar­ity of the Mum­bai edi­tion gave rise to an­other one. “It be­came so pop­u­lar that five days and ten de­sign­ers were not enough. So, the Delhi edi­tion took off,” Sethi says. The ti­tle fluc­tu­ated be­tween In­dia and Delhi Cou­ture Week.

8 The in­ter­na­tional touch: A crew from Robert Red­ford’s Sun­dance TV came down to shoot se­quences for the first cou­ture week, for the show, Man Shops Globe.

9 The de­signer con­nect: Names like Varun Bahl, Ro­hit Bal and Man­ish Mal­ho­tra were a part of the in­au­gu­ral edi­tion, and they are a part of the 10th one too.

10 Look­ing to the fu­ture: The com­ing years might see an in­ter­na­tional cou­ture week. “We have been flooded with re­quests to take it abroad. Lon­don, New York and Dubai might get a chance to ex­pe­ri­ence our cou­ture week,” Sethi says.

PHO­TOS: RAAJESSH KASHYAP/HT

FDCI pres­i­dent Su­nil Sethi looked re­gal in a white-on-white en­sem­ble that fea­tured band­hgala paired with Jodh­puri-style pants

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