4Th de­sign­ers Fair In Chen­nai

In­dia’s most ex­cit­ing ex­hi­bi­tion for de­signs and kit mak­ers.

Shoes & Accessories - - Contents -

Held con­cur­rently with In­dia In­ter­na­tional Leather Fair in Chen­nai ev­ery year, De­sign­ers Fair has grown to be­come the largest plat­form in the coun­try for de­sign­ers from abroad as well as from the coun­try. Coun­cil for Leather Ex­ports, a body un­der the aegis of the Min­istry of Fi­nance, is the force be­hind the suc­cess of both the events, In­dia In­ter­na­tional Leather Fair (IILF) and De­sign­ers Fair.

Like the pre­vi­ous edi­tions, the fourth edi­tion of the fair will be held in Ho­tel ITC Grand Chola, Chen­nai, In­dia from Feb­ru­ary 1-3, 2019.

Men­tion may be made that to en­sure the short­age of qual­i­fied and ta­lented de­sign­ers is ad­dressed, CLE re­solved to an in­sti­tute an in­de­pen­dent task force. Since then Naresh Basin has been spear­head­ing as the con­vener of the fair with great dili­gence.

If IILF in Chen­nai is sump­tu­ous and suc­cess­fully flam­boy­ant, then De­sign­ers Fair con­sti­tutes all sorts of tal­ents and is thronged by vis­i­tors mainly com­pris­ing of leather footwear and ac­ces­sories man­u­fac­tur­ers and ex­porters. Apart from In­dian de­sign­ers’ and de­sign and fash­ion in­sti­tutes’ ac­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion, de­sign­ers from US, Italy, France, Por­tu­gal, Rus­sia, Brazil, China, to name some, dis­played their best and lat­est de­signs in the last edi­tion.

Naresh says, “Our goal is to in­crease the in­ter­na­tional di­men­sion of our fair, which means not only giv­ing more pro­fes­sional op­por­tu­ni­ties to busi­nesses and vis­i­tors, but also know­ing how to iden­tify and an­tic­i­pate new mar­ket trends.” The show helps many man­u­fac­tur­ers to avert the high cost in­volved in trav­el­ling, as many kit providers and de­sign­ers show­case the lat­est de­sign de­vel­op­ment projects for the leather in­dus­try un­der one roof, by bring­ing in over­seas and In­dian de­sign tal­ents. The fair pro­vides op­por­tu­nity to In­dian com­pa­nies to ex­plore long term busi­ness tie-ups with renowned de­sign­ers not only on cre­at­ing new de­signs but also train­ing their in-house de­sign­ers as well.

All de­sign­ers and in­sti­tu­tions in­di­cated dur­ing the last edi­tion that they would par­tic­i­pate in the com­ing edi­tion. In short, since the 1st edi­tion of the fair its sig­nif­i­cance has been great, and had al­ready laid a strong foun­da­tion.

“If last year’s De­sign­ers Fair was great, then this time we are go­ing to make it greater. Over­all, 100% of the de­sign­ers are com­ing back again for the fourth edi­tion. This time, we hope to cover more seg­ments. Sev­eral de­sign­ers from sev­eral coun­tries, in­clud­ing do­mes­tic, have al­ready con­firmed their par­tic­i­pa­tion. The dif­fer­ence this time is that the num­ber

has gone up and it is go­ing to go up. This clearly in­di­cates that the fair, this time, is go­ing to big­ger,” Naresh elab­o­rates.

He spoke about the ‘Make in In­dia’ en­deav­our of the Gov­ern­ment and laid em­pha­sis on the coun­try’s fo­cus on de­sign, skill de­vel­op­ment and en­vi­ron­ment. Naresh re­it­er­ated that the ob­jec­tive of the fair in In­dia is to up­lift the ‘de­sign ca­pa­bil­i­ties’ in the coun­try.

“De­sign and In­no­va­tion is the key,” he re­marked, “in a glob­al­iz­ing econ­omy, de­sign is be­ing per­ceived as a new en­gine of eco­nomic and in­dus­trial growth. De­sign and break­through in­no­va­tions can play a piv­otal role in po­si­tion­ing of leather and leather prod­uct in­dus­tries in the global arena by value ad­di­tion apart from en­hanc­ing com­pet­i­tive­ness. Suc­cess in be­ing able to work with high-end cus­tomers re­quires build­ing de­sign ca­pa­bil­i­ties that en­able us to of­fer ex­cit­ing col­lec­tions that can com­pete in­ter­na­tion­ally.”

A lot of at­ten­tion would have to be paid to hon­ing ‘De­sign’ ca­pa­bil­i­ties, in­tro­duce tech­no­log­i­cally ad­vanced tools to aid in the ‘de­sign process’ and to de­velop ‘mer­chan­diz­ing’ ex­per­tise amongst our prod­uct de­sign teams in the footwear com­pa­nies, he elab­o­rated.

In In­dia, we have re­alised that to achieve suc­cess one has to build not only in­house de­sign ca­pa­bil­i­ties, but also work in con­sul­ta­tion with de­sign com­pa­nies in­ter­na­tion­ally that have a deep un­der­stand­ing of life­style and fash­ion trends in Europe and the US, which will con­tinue to be pri­mary mar­kets for the fore­see­able fu­ture for up­mar­ket prod­ucts, he added.

The turnover of the In­dian leather and footwear in­dus­try is ex­pected to grow from present $12 bil­lion to about $21-22 bil­lion by 2020, which in­cludes ex­port turnover of $9.5 bil­lion and do­mes­tic in­dus­try turnover of $ 12 bil­lion. This huge growth po­ten­tial makes De­sign­ers Fair an at­trac­tive busi­ness meet­ing point. Un­der­lin­ing the im­por­tance, the coun­cil un­der­took a mas­sive pub­lic­ity cam­paign to pro­mote in­vest­ments un­der Make in In­dia. Road shows were held in Ger­many, USA, Brazil, Italy, China and Tai­wan. It looks cer­tain that the fourth edi­tion will be much grander, and the in­dus­try will wit­ness a big­ger dis­play of tal­ents.

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