New Delhi, Oct 29 (ANS) This time around, the bi-annual Wills Lifestyle India Fashion week (WIFW) ended on a happy note as it generated good business for many designers, who managed to impress international buyers with their sense of aesthetics and style.
'My business deals started from day one of the fashion week. I got new Japanese buyers. Business was excellent throughout the week and it's just the beginning because I am hoping for repeat orders,' Leena Singh of designer duo Ashima-Leena told IANS on the concluding day of the event Wednesday.
Young designer duo Hemant and Nandita, too, were upbeat about their business.
'I can't tell you how good the business has been. We have been getting orders from everywhere - France, Japan, US, Europe. It's just way too amazing. Business has been fantastic, touchwood!' said Hemant.
'We have been learning with each fashion week and to generate business at these events, one has to know which market to target. If you are able to do that, business will come to your doorstep,' he added.
Organised by the Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI) and now in its 14th edition, WIFW is a five-day business-to-business event that serves as a platform for national and international buyers who, under one roof, get a chance to meet top-notch Indian designers and place orders.
This year, there were a staggering 175 buyers - 100 from home and 75 from abroad - who descended on the Pragati Maidan venue where 110 designers, including the likes of Rohit Bal, Manish Arora and Rajesh Pratap Singh, had put up their stalls to showcase their works.
Hagar, a buyer from the swish Khatoons store in Kuwait, bought around 40 pieces each from designers Kavita Bhartia, Rina Dhaka, Anupama Dayal, Rehane and Preeti S. Kapoor.
'We like Indian fabrics and embroidery. The vibrant colours and Indian touch in these dresses is liked by people back home,' Hagar told IANS.
Another buyer, Yukiko Sudo from Japan's Isetan store, brought around 250 pieces from designers like Kavita Bhartia and Cue by Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna.
Tomoko Inuzuka from Japanese store Beams placed orders with her favourite designers Manish Arora and Kavita Bhartia.
Inuzuka also bought five bags from Nida Mahmood.
'Inuzuka liked my collection. She took those bags the moment she saw them.
Apart from that, she has also placed orders for my jackets,' said Mahmood.
However, as in the past, no figures were revealed about the business generated.
'It's like this,' explained FDCI president Sunil Sethi, 'buyers place orders here and then they invariably place repeat orders. So, the actual business generated will be known only later. But I can assure you that the business generated was tremendous.'
'Last year, business was a mixed bag for many designers. Buyers were choosy and were playing safe. But with market conditions improving, optimism was seen among buyers, who chose to experiment and placed orders with most of the designers. I am sure that every designer has got something or the other. With so many buyers around, I am sure that the designer lot is happy with the kind of business that has been generated this season,' Sethi added.
Perhaps taking a cue from the HDIL India Couture Week in Mumbai earlier this month, WIFW saw a lot of Bollywood presence, with stars like Abhay Deol, Ranbir Kapoor, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Katrina Kaif, Amrita Rao, and Minisha Lamba walking the ramp during the event.
Due to this, Pradeep Hirani, owner of Mumbai retail outlet Kimaya and a major buyer at WIFW, had a rather different take on the event. The focus, according to him, should be on market weeks.
'There is a lot of Bollywood attached to these fashion weeks now. The sole purpose of focusing on buying is vanishing. The best thing would be to start having market weeks where only buyers and designers are allowed to interact and place orders,' Hirani maintained.