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Future of fashion lies in technology – experts at IFF
Jan '14
During the final sessions at IFF, top brands and designers felt the need of creating the aspiration in consumers to want fashion and to crave for the best in fashion and lifestyle.

For this, it is imperative that professionals involved across the entire value chain of the fashion industry - fashion designers, fashion retailers, fashion journalists - create this aura for consumers to want fashion, by treating Fashion as a aspirational, and creating their processes around it to make consumers aware of latest trends, educating them on an inspirational lifestyle, and become a fashion forward consuming class.

The session gave out new trends and business opportunities for creating the next fashion revolution. Dr. Vandana Bhandari, Dean, NIFT moderated the session with key industry leaders Mr. Pradeep Hirani, MD, Kimaya, Mr. Manish Kapoor, COO, French Connection, Ms. Priyadarshini Rao, Creative Director, Mineral & Designer, Mr. Rajiv Nair, CEO, Celio Future Fashion, Ms. Malini Agarwal, Founder & Blogger- In- Chief, MissMalini Publishing

Mr. Pradeep Hirani, MD, Kimaya said that the future of fashion is digital and it will be going high street. 3D printing is going to take fashion by storm. We call it as new dictator of fashion. 3D printing is going to make things cheaper and more accessible. Its green and sustainable color changing technology clothes with washable microchips which will help the customer to change the colour and design.

“In future designers will also need engineering degrees as the future of fashion will see the collaboration between engineering and designing. Another concept which will gain popularity is a virtual store which we are planning to put in place. We are soon launching Karmik at Delhi where we have ipads instead of clothes. There will be a virtual trial room where one doesn’t have to change the clothes for trial. Today, consumers have to go from shop to shop to compare products but online will make this easy in the coming days.

Mr. Manish Kapoor, COO, French Connection added that the brands need to look at commercialization in terms of concept. The idea also has to be inclusive. Brands that have been successful have had local management. If the brand gives inherent value to the customer, they will do well.

Ms. Priyadarshini Rao, Creative Director, Mineral & Designer commented that the India women at some point is looking for value plus something that fits her well and works for her aesthetics. We figured the brand Mineral which will help her to achieve that. The Indian women have a figure different from the other countries which needs a certain kind of fit.

Mr. Rajiv Nair, CEO, Celio Future Fashion said that before we educate the customer about the value standards, it is more important to be responsible as a retailer. Celio is a brand which does not standardize men’s wear as the owners believe that the brand has to be affordable, accessible and must have a twist.

The session on catalyzing new Ideas, concepts, categories, occasions and inspirations to create the next wave of fashion consumption, Ms. Roshni Bakshi, MD- Licensing and retail, Disney UTV said that there is an emerging market for graphics in fashion and couture brands. Another emerging market is where consumer buy online and pick it up offline.

Work wear is becoming part casual and part formal. Augmented realty is also emerging. It is an experience where you can try the product online. Clearly, trends are continuously changing but some remain the same as graphics, polka dots, blacks and greys.

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