Designer Rajeev Sethi, December: The death of the Italian-French veteran fashion designer Pierre Cardin hit like a shock to everyone as he brought a revolution in the fashion industry. From designers to audience everyone drop-dead shocked on the demise of the designer at the age of 98. Cardin was the first international designer who had held a fashion in India and it was him only who brought many international designers in India to give a new identity to the fashion.
This fashion show was organised back in 1967 and was appreciated by the presence of former late prime minister Indira Gandhi. Hindustan Times spoke to Rajeev Sethi who is himself a designer and founder at Asian Heritage Foundation to relive his meeting and interaction with the late designer. They both had worked alongside for almost three years between 1969-71.
Sethi shared about the work both the designers shared with each other. He quoted, “I got a scholarship from the French government to go to France, and since I had met Cardin earlier, I went to see him. I ended up working with him all of 1969, ’70 and ’71. I helped his atelier to set up his laboratoire d’idees or laboratory of ideas, where we were going into trans-disciplinary experiments and experiences and do (a lot in) theatre, culinary art, experiential exhibitions. It was like a circus. But this was before he bought the Theatre des Ambassadeurs on Avenue Gabriel and renamed it Espace Cardin (it opened in 1971 complete with a full-fledged theatre). He believed in the synergy of art, fashion and theatre. It had more to do with the lifestyle beyond the haute couture that Paris was known for. In 1970, he sent me back to India to collect items for an exhibition on India at Espace Cardin, called Des Indes Moderne. Eventually, the exhibition had works designed by me, including items of furniture.”
On being asked about his first meeting or interaction with Cardin, Sethi shared that India must be aware of this fact that the journey of international fashion began in the country because of Pierre Cardin himself. He mentioned that Cardin had introduced many opportunities in the market and he also brought the Handicrafts and Handlooms Export Corporation of India Ltd back in 1967.He further quoted to HT, “Pupul Jayakar, who was heading the HHEC at the time, invited him to the country. I went to audition as a model for a fashion show that he was doing at the Ashoka hotel, but that was just ostensibly because I carried with me all my sketches and paintings to show him. I didn’t model but he liked the drawings very much and asked me to work for him in Paris. That was a seminal show, and it was the first time we saw international fashion.”
HT asked Rajeev Sethi about Cardin and his contribution remembered by masses in the coming times. On this, Sethi expressed, “By the time I got to Paris and joined him, he was already a global brand. What attracted me was that he was moving beyond fashion into things that touched life as a whole. He could link this kind of trans-disciplinary market with commerce. Of course, people had made perfumes but no one had made it at a scale that Cardin did. Branding idea is not new, but what you can do with branding, from the glamour industry, and take it to a more prêt-a-poter line, is his innovation. He said you could do all the things that Haute Couture does, and you could do it so bespoke that it could become even ready-to-wear. He was the first to break the dichotomy between the two, and he made high fashion think seriously about the fashion that goes out to more people.”
Nykaa collabs with influencers to engage audience digitally
January: To boost their online engagement, Nykaa Fashion has teamed up with beauty influencers in order to launch their mini-series, The Beauty Bar on the Nykaa Network. Nykaa is running various digital initiatives to keep up with its consumers ever since the lockdown was imposed in the previous year over the covid spread.
The interactive latest mini-tutorial series The Beauty Bar will have influencers giving tips to the viewers using the Nykaa products available at e-commerce platform of the brand. This would give shopper’s a piece of advice who are right now preferring online shopping while sitting at home. This would be done in place of the services and consultations the customers receive while in store.
Nykaa previously announced on Facebook that the celebrity make-up artist Ojas Rajani would come on January 16 to teach a Wedding Guest Look in a masterclass focusing the wedding season along with tips and tricks of make-up.
Other than this, Vibhuti Arora would be leading a skincare masterclass titled Skin Revival 2021 on the same day. She will showcase trending skincare techniques focusing on how to take good care of the skin naturally.
Other than increasing their digital mark, the brand has been on foot after lockdown to restart its ‘brick and mortar’ expansion. Nykaa Fashion recently announced its first store in New Delhi’s Ambience Mall. Further, their new stores are also opening in Thrissur and Thiruvananthapuram, among other locations in the country.
Paris Fashion Week of this month goes totally digital
January: French fashion’s regulatory body has ended the confusion and decided to go digital over the Paris Fashion Week. This month’s Paris men’s and haute couture will witness strict audience free amid the covid fear. The Federation de la Haute Couture et de la Mode told the luxury houses that they will not be allowed to invite guests this season as they got instructions by the police.
Even though Paris is not technically under lockdown, strict restrictions limited the movement in place nationwide which also include a 6pm or 8pm curfew. Also, a repeated failure in obeying the rules may lead you to a six-month prison sentence. Keeping the restaurants, bars, cinemas, theatres and museums shut, France’s second lockdown ended on 15 December.
In a statement to the AP, the federation said on Monday that “we confirm that there can be no public gatherings at Paris Fashion Week.” He further added, “houses can still organize ‘real’ runway shows with models broadcast live, provided that their events take place behind closed doors.”
In order to maintain the social distancing norms and the stringent restrictions, the French fashion regulatory body is practicing every necessary step.
Spanish brand Desigual expands online presence with Tata CLiQ Luxury
January: Spanish fashion brand Desigual has expanded its online presence through Tata CLiQ Luxury. Earlier, Desigual forayed its Indian presence with help of retail group Tablez. The brand partnered with Tata CLiQ Luxury to bring the unique designs and products of Desigual to customers across the country. The development came after the brand witnessed a great response from its first concept store in Delhi.
Adeeb Ahamed, managing director at Tablez quoted as saying in a press release by Desigual, “We are excited to partner with Tata CLiQ Luxury to make Desigual’s product portfolio more accessible to our existing and new customers. The collaboration envisions bringing together Tata CLiQ Luxury’s extensive reach with Desigual’s high fashion offering, to deliver a seamless shopping experience for the fashion-conscious Indian consumer.”
“We are delighted to bring Desigual, a brand much loved for its optimistic, differential aesthetic, to our discerning customers. With this addition, we are able to provide the savvy, global Indian with a truly international shopping experience – one that is focused on quality, authenticity and thoughtfulness,” said Gitanjali Saxena, business head at Tata CLiQ Luxury.
Desigual has been serving the best of their products to consumers and now aims at providing the digital presence. The Spanish brand aims at providing a unique character of its creations for the individuals wanting to be 100 per cent of themselves and express their most creative sides. The brand adjusts to needs of its buyers with the help of categories like women, accessories and footwear.
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