The contestants were mentored by the trailblazers of the industry such as Amit Aggarwal, Anju Modi, JJ Valaya, Namrata Joshipura, Rahul Mishra, Shantanu & Nikhil, Suneet Varma, Abraham & Thakore, Rina Dhaka and Kunal Rawal.
Guided through the process of repurposing garments contributed by leading Indian fashion designers under the theme of 'My Planet. My Pride', the teams comprising of aspirants from each category together created beautiful ensembles, a final fashion film and social media content that echoed their individuality and unique sense of style.
IANSlife spoke to mentor and designer Suneet Varma to talk about The Showcase and all things fashion:
As a designer, how important is the availability of innovative textiles which promote sustainable fashion?
Varma: I feel it's very important to innovate textiles to begin the design process and to push sustainability at every level of the creative process. The process needs to be sustainable for the end result to be the same.
With a focus on eco-conscious fashion, consumer awareness is a key factor that plays a significant role, do you agree?
Varma: Yes, most certainly the mindset of the consumer needs to change for any eco-conscious and sustainable idea to hold good. For decades the consumer culture has robbed the planet of its natural resources, and created depletion and pollution that will eventually lead to many irreversible scenarios- each and every person on the planet is responsible and needs to take conscious steps to consume less and be more conscious of our carbon footprint.
Most definitely. I believe learning and inculcating sustainable practices amongst consumers at an early stage will aid in shaping their mindset towards sustainable fashion and hence redefine the future of the fashion industry.
Re-purposing/recycling/up-cycling- what is the feasibility when we talk of these terms with reference to couture?
Varma: The tradition of hands me down of family heirlooms and couture is a very beautiful process in India and many parts of southeast Asia. I feel and encourage many of my clients to recycle their couture and I see it working.
What did you look for in the outfits designed by the aspirants?
Varma: I was looking for magic! A sense of allure, mystery and wonder. Whereby I see a newness & sincerity of effort & talent.
More and more designers in India are looking to get corporate investments in order to grow and diversify. What is your take on this?
Varma: It's the correct time for corporate India to invest in Indian designers and make them into massive brands with pan India and international reach. It's good that it's happening!
What does My Planet My Pride mean to you?
Varma: Making environment-conscious decisions will make a difference to the planet and the people within it, after all the condition of our planet is our responsibility.
Weaving the narrative of sustainability under the theme of My Planet. My Pride, Blenders Pride Fashion Tour 'The Showcase' powered by FDCI encourages the culture of consuming better. To me, My Planet My Pride refers to adopting more sustainable methods for our clothing choices now more than ever. With fashion bloggers taking over the internet, the blend of fashion and innovation is phenomenal.
In a world where people want more and more, we often fail to slow down and notice the impact our choices have on the environment. The small changes that we alter in our lives as individuals will make the biggest impact on the environment and create a monumental impact on the fashion industry. Sustainable development is not an option but the only path to the future.
After an overwhelming nationwide response and an extensive team challenge, the winners of the second edition were announced.
Commenting on the success of the second edition of Blenders Pride Fashion Tour "The Showcase', Ishwindar Singh, General Manager Marketing, Pernod Ricard India, said, "With Blenders Pride Fashion Tour 'The Showcase', we have built the foundation for the fashion ecosystem for the future. We are elated to provide the emerging fashion talent in the country with this unique platform to accelerate their career journey. We received an overwhelming response with over a thousand entries from the length and breadth of the country. It's truly inspiring to see such incredible talent. We believe that real pride is in making choices that reflect one's identity and these aspiring young talent have made that choice to showcase the creative passion that truly defines them."
Commenting on the success of the second edition Sunil Sethi, President, FDCI, said, "We are proud to associate with Blenders Pride Fashion Tour 'The Showcase' and be a part of a career-defining journey of aspiring talent from across the country. FDCI and Blenders Pride Fashion Tour being definitive names in the fashion space, with their combined strengths and synergies were able to create a platform that harnessed talent and creativity. The second edition of 'The Showcase' has set a benchmark for similar platforms to create an inclusive space that hones the craft of budding talent. It was truly a remarkable event for the fashion industry."
The team that caught the jury's attention includes a sustainable fashion designer based out of Pondicherry, Naushad Ali, an aspiring model from New Delhi, Ishpreet Kaur, fashion shutterbug from New Delhi, Tanay Babbar and corporate professional & fashion and lifestyle content creator from Mumbai, Urbasi Chowdhury. With the culmination of the second edition, 'The Showcase' has established itself as the front-runner in providing a holistic platform to young and aspiring talent across the nation.
Following closely behind, the first runner up team includes designer Ada Malik (Mumbai), model Kanishka Maheshwari (Bareily), shutterbug Shreyans Dungarwal (Hyderabad) and content creator Aria Krishnamurti (Hyderabad). The second runner team includes designer Sreegokul Viswanath (Kannur), model Aniwarya Pawar (Mumbai), shutterbug Pratim Shankar (Mumbai) and content creator Shriya Kandude (Hyderabad).
Along with an opportunity to showcase their work in the next edition of Blenders Pride Fashion Tour, the winners will benefit from a long-term association with the Fashion Design Council of India. A cash prize is a welcome addition to the pool of opportunities that lie ahead of them.