The value of a showstopper

Media attention at Indian fashion weeks tends to be on celebrities but designers disagree that they are a distraction.

Ians September 28, 2010

MUMBAI: Most fashion weeks in India see a heavy dose of Bollywood celebrities either as showstoppers or as guests. But while media attention tends to be on the celebrities, designers disagree that they are a distraction.

The recently concluded Lakme Fashion Week (LFW), like many other fashion events in India, saw an inflow of celebrities. However, designer Nachiket Barve, whose show was attended by Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan, feels it ultimately boils down to the collections.

“I feel it doesn’t matter if celebrities are part of your show in any way or not. The clothes have to be good and no one can save you if they are bad. If they are bad, the focus will definitely shift from the collection, but if your work is good, nothing else will matter more,” Barve told IANS.

“I feel it’s a personal call to make celebrities your showstoppers. Ultimately your work should be able to speak volumes, celebrity or no celebrity,” he added.

Designer Troy Costa, who had roped in singer Shaan and his wife Radhika to walk the ramp for his LFW show, says clothes are always the main priority and the effect doesn’t get diluted if a celebrity flaunts it.

“The focus doesn’t shift from clothes at all if you have a showstopper for the show. If the celebrity you have roped in for your show is walking for other designers too then the effect might get diluted, but if the person is loyal to you, then it adds to your collection.”

“Shaan has been sporting my clothes for seven years. He comes for all my shows; so obviously he was the right choice for me to flaunt my creations,” said Costa.

Other Indian designers have a different opinion. “Speaking as a designer, I would never use anyone as a showstopper because you need to believe in your designs. You don’t need anyone else who belongs to the fancy world to bring that much of glamour. I think design should speak for itself,” said Sailex.

In Pakistan, the trend has caught on only with the influx of fashion weeks. At PFDC Fashion Week in Lahore this spring, shows featured a number of celebrities walking the runway, including EP vocalist and actor Fawad Khan, Faisal Kapadia and Bilal Maqsood from Strings, Ali Zafar, Hadiqa Kiani, Lollywood actors Sana and Moammar Rana, and TV hosts Nadia Jamil, Juggan Kazim and Ayeshah Alam. IANS

Published in The Express Tribune, September 29th, 2010.


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