Apparel Retail Expansion Is Creating Opportunities for New Brands

Fashion is a tricky word; you wish to join a certain club, and you wish to look exclusive at the same time. In the year 2002, the Marketing Pundit, Mr. Philip Kotler, predicted about the death of brands in the fashion industry. He was in favor of small boutiques catering to the fashion needs of individuals. He was right; at least in terms of India, where pendulum was swinging back in the favor of small boutiques and family tailors.


Big Designers Were Not in Favor of Mass Replication

Mass replication of a design is the only criterion of fashion. However, in the previous decade, Indian designers were not keen on mass replications. Designers were discouraging a mass replication and putting a heavy price on the clothes that they were selling. This is an adverse condition for any particular brand to flourish in the market. The “Dress circle of Indian fashion” was more interested in exclusive collections and the same trend was seeping into other segments as well. Next-door boutiques were coming up with even and odd combinations, and it was a ‘rainbow period’ for the party circuit, where designs, from practically all the decades of fashion, were making a comeback.

Focus Was More on Accessories

During the last few years of previous decades, we saw a different type of change; designers were now designing accessories. They were first searching out for a theme of accessories and then weaving a dress around them to match with that. Concepts like color blocking were all set to knock the doors on the ‘Indian fashion scene’ at that point of time and they did the same thing as well.

Organized Retail Created a New Market for Brands

Organized retail shops were booming in India, and they were in a fix, because people were not keen on the brands. These retailers were missing the face of a designer to promote their goods, and this is why, the concept of premium brands entered the market. Gradually, most of the organized retail outlets started promoting their brands. This further went to a new level when some big designers collaborated with these premium retail outlets and started selling apparels under the ‘umbrella of organized retail’.

Toll of Recession on the Designs

After the recession of 2006, Indian brands saw a different kind of negative trends; they were more inclined towards formals and traditional clothes took a backseat. The competition was tough, and in order to combat this situation, some brands decided to go for fusion dresses. Words like ‘Indo-Western dresses online are an outcome of this era completely. Now, this same thing has evolved to a new level, where people are wearing “mixed Indian and western weaves” and this type of dressing is catching up in the Indian fashion circuit as well.

Branded Accessories Made an Entry into the Game

Stealing a leaf from the book of some seasoned designers; players at the organized retail outlets also added accessories into their brand, and it was a major adaptation that we can count in the evolution of the current Indian apparel brands. Now, these brands are also coming up with a “flexi-dressing” plan, where you can mix-and-match accessories as per your choice, and give your look a new twist every time.

Royal Classics Are Back in the Game

Kerala style sarees, Churidars and Anarkalis reinvented themselves with the help of these new apparel brands. Things like Sarees, traditional Salvar etc., will never go out of vogue. This real mantra worked in the favor of organized retail brands.

The entry of e-tailing in the apparel market is certainly going to make a difference, because, it is performing well in every other sector too. Though, it is not that much successful with the clothes and fashion, because the ‘feel and fit’ is missing from the equation. However, branding can act like a great solution here, as it did in the case of organized retail.

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