Manish Malhotra backs Phulkari after Chikankari Image: Fotocorp
Manish Malhotra has dropped a truth not many top designers would. Malhotra, who has an eponymous label which he launched 11 years ago, says that for more people to be able to wear and buy creations by designers, it is important to create a line which is "a little more reachable". Truer words haven't been spoken.
The designers, who regularly dresses celebrities, is also one of the most celebrated names in the Indian fashion world. It only makes sense that he'd have a sensible opinion. "For more people to be able to buy... and if designers want to expand their business, they must come up with a line which is affordable, which is a little more reachable. That is the future," says Malhotra, who just launched a virtual reality (VR) fashion show in Dubai.
The 50-year-old hints that he's also considering the idea and says that it will happen "soon". For now, he's kicked about the future of fashion. "VR is for people who are not there at a fashion week or at the show to not only view the show but to feel that they are a part of it," he asserts.
His show for his Dubai audience made him aware of the global fascination with abayas. "I would really like to take designing abayas seriously, although I have designed them in the past. I'd like to design them more innovatively. They look beautiful and trendy now. I love it when tradition and culture are intact and respected, and yet there is a new innovation to it," he admits.
With traditional Banarasi weaves and Chanderi fabrics being promoted by the fashion industry in India, Malhotra says he would like to promote quality cotton more with the summer season approaching. However, he is not unaware of the bitter truths about the fashion industry and the gaps it doesn't fill. Take for instance, the reports of Benarasi weavers committing suicide. This, despite Benarasi weaves being promoted at numerous fashion shows across India.
The designer doesn't mince words. "This goes to show the disparity between what is shown and what is there. There are a lot of designers who make a lot of noise about Benarasi weaves... Something that becomes a fad and doesn't have depth. I am going to Varanasi again now... I think that it is very important to give them a lot more work," he says, urging designers to not just talk about providing work for the weavers, but to also act upon their words.
(With inputs from IANS)