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Are Indian Designers Just Tailors?
26 th Sep 2012

Manish Arora made a statement sometime ago that put some of the Indian Fashion Designers in a frenzy, he said that Indian Designers are just tailors. The implication of this is that they lack the creativity and imagination required of Designers. The senior Indian Designer also stated that so called Indian Couture is all about Bridal Collections and not really anything else.

We think that this might be true to some extent and of course this is a broad generalisation. A lot of Indian Designers do indeed focus on Bridal collections, mainly because this segment is quite lucrative and attracts high profit margins. And often in this competitive segment, designers tend to create styles that clients need rather than just their individual vision.

From a business perspective and a customer's perspective, this is a great idea because the customer gets exactly what they want and the designer gets the customer's business. But does it not mean that the designers have effectively become Tailors that are just executing their customer's wishes? To some extent yes, because while they have maintained their individual personality and style for the garment, they are just executing what the customer has demanded.

It might be argued that a real designer has a vision and is normally not going to deviate from that, at least substantially, for a client's business. If the client does not like what they can see, they can always buy from elsewhere. But in the real world, this is a much tougher choice to make. What is a Bollywood celebrity asks her favourite Indian Designer to make something that she has in mind? Do you, as a designer, say yes or no? Does it make you a Tailor ?

We don't have an answer yet for this, but clearly Manish Arora is convinced that this sort of behaviour repeatedly means that Indian Designers are eventually going to become tailors.

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