Advertise on Denim Club
Join Denim Club India :: Membership Open
First-ever Comprehensive Directory of Denim Businesses and Professionals / Denim Who's Who :: brought to you by Denim Club India
100% Authetic Handloom Denim Fabric and Garments :: Handloom Denim Initiative by Denim Club India
 
Articles Section @ Denim Club India
Denim Club India - a social and professional networking place, for members of the denim community - brings to your desk well-researched compilations in the form of articles and documents relating to the Denim industry, carrying information from India and all over the world.

The articles included in this section cover various issues relating to different segments of the denim indutsry, highlight the problems being faced by the denim industry, discuss the opportunities that exist, and keep coming up, in the denim eco-system, throw light on the possible solutions, show-case the latest innovations and trends in the denim fabric and denim garments technology and processes, and a lot more, all of which is useful for the denim professionals engaged at any point in the entire denim supply-chain.
Industry in Dire Need of bridging gaps between the Fashion Designers and Denim Manufacturers
Industry in Dire Need of bridging gaps between the Fashion Designers and Denim Manufacturers
Denim Club India
The market for jeans and all sorts of denim products is thriving overseas. From designer denim wear including dresses, vests, jackets, jumpsuits, rompers and shorts to school uniforms, and accessories such as handbags, shoes, belts, caps, denim is increasingly being used in different types of conceivable products. In India however, the market for denims is dominated only by jeans wear.

Rapidly changing lifestyles and influence of western culture is fuelling the need and demand for designer denim in India. International brands have been increasing their operations and they continue to be a preferred choice for the Gen-X, since the Indian brands are lacking in the design element.

Last year, at Lakme India Fashion Week, Bollywood star Akshay Kumar created ripples with the denim designs created by designer Tarun Tahiliani for Levi’s, and this year, designer Narendra Kumar brought out a special denim collection for Killer Jeans. Both are indicative of some joint efforts being made between Fashion Designers and Denim Manufacturers, but a lot more still needs to be done to fulfill the domestic demand and fuel the growth for designer denim brands. Read on....
Fashion trends come and go as each decade goes by, but one trend that has remained intact over so many seasons is the beloved denim. A trend that was born in Nimes, France and raised in America, denim collections have undergone tremendous changes through the passing years.

Calvin Klien Jeans Created in the 18th century for miners due to the durable nature of the fabric, denim didn't become popular until the 1930s. The popularity of denim continued to grow during the following decades, and were was transformed forever in the 1980s with debut of high fashion denim. Jordache, Calvin Klein and Sergio Valente were amongst the pioneers in creating slimmer, tight fitting designer jeans

The economic recession of the early 90s slowed down sales, but it struck back with a vengeance. Ever since the launch of the premium jeans 7 for all Mankind  in 2000, denim brands and jean labels have been mushrooming internationally, and even the recent period of recession has seen launch of new brands bringing in newer fabrics, fits, and styles.
In line with the global trend, demand for denims in India has also witnessed a sea change. The Indian denim market is among the fastest growing market with an anticipated growth rate of 8-12%. The retail boom has lead to a a surge in domestic denim demand. Undoubtedly the Indian market currently presents a huge potential for jeans makers to spread their wings. International brands such as Levi Strauss, Wrangler and Lee Cooper have recently accelerated their retail expansion.

But with the entire world becoming a global village, Indian shoppers feel that the denim range available in India lacks the luster and stature easily available overseas. India has witnessed launch of some indigenous denim brands like De-Extase by Aarvee Denim and Export Limited, and i Jeanswear by Shopper Stop; however, they can not truly satisfy the appetite for denim of the globe trotting Indian youth as the fabric, cuts, styles and finishing by enlarge are very basic.

Dr. P. R. RoyAccording to Dr. P. R. Roy, the father of Indian denim industry, designers in the western world, from Georgio Armani, Calvin Klein to Donna Karan, have not been able to stay away from  denim fabric and have had to play with denim in some way or the other. On the other hand, the designers in India have not experimented much with denim. He feels that the established players in the Indian denim industry need to holistically explore the untapped potential of denim by taking initiatives and working with designers to come out with designer denim and jeans line.

Today, the industry is enjoying a strong domestic demand. Research reports are going gung-ho about the potential India holds for luxury products including luxury denim. The market in India  is vast and the Indian consumer is willing to pay the price for a high-end quality product. Maxxis Group, a retail and distribution platform has earlier this year brought to India iconic luxury denim brand 7 For All Mankind, German denim brand Mustang has been launched via an exclusive retail tie-up with Shopper's Stop.

Vikas Pilania, Brand Manager – BHPC, Spencer’s Retail LimitedAs Vikas Pilania, Brand Manager – BHPC, Spencer’s Retail Limited, opines "Branded wear will help the local denim industry immensely, as high-end fashion trickles down the cycle of the fashion wave and ultimately ends up as large volume in-demand trends in the mass market chains."Supporting the luxury reports, Pilania, further adds “The luxury denim market is a multi-million dollar industry in most International countries and its time has come to hit the Indian market. Luxury denim helps mass-market business from the trend cycles down to price the friendly level.

Designers Dillema
Desinger Duo Parvesh JaiParvesh and Jai, the famous designer duo agree, that the Indian designers have not been able to utilize the real potential of denim fabric. The reasons behind this, they feel, is the fact that  Indian fashion started expanding recently and Indian designers have started marketing themselves only in  the past decade. Additionally, denim quintessentially is a western fabric, and Indian designers have been more focused on reviving Indian crafts and hence not yet  fully explored potential of the magical denim fabric.

While one may agree to what the designer duo feels, we cannot ignore the popularity denims currently enjoy in India. Designer clothes worn on the ramp rarely make an appearance in the wardrobes of the not so rich and famous, denims are nonetheless an integral part of almost everyone’s wardrobe.

Fashion Designer Jattinn KochharCiting the reasons behind why Indian designers are yet to explore the possibilities of venturing into designer denim den, well-known designer Jattinn Kochhar asserts, “Internationally, the whole trend is to do collaborative projects. For example, designers do design forecast, and fabric and colour forecasts are done by experts from the respective fields so when you have many minds working on something, you always get a unique final product. Here in India, everybody works in isolation and designers don’t have the kind of infrastructure, technical support or funding to experiment with the fabric.” 

Designer Samant ChauhanOn similar lines, designer Samant Chauhan says, “Indian designer wear market is occasion wear. People buy designer clothes for occasions. Most of the designers are doing only occasion wear, no one is investing in designer denims because the infrastructure facilities required are totally different compared to the production of occasion or designer wear. I have been wanting to come out with a denim collection since long time, the concept is ready but I am looking forward to a denim manufacturer, who can support me.

Parvesh and Jai also feel that there is likely to be birth of new ideas and newer denim products if denim companies sponsor potential designers  changing the perception of denim, in the minds of Indians, from a rough and tough fabric to that of a luxurious and fashionable fabric.

So what can bridge the gap between the demand and supply of designer denims in India? Or will Indian consumers have to continue to rely upon whatever is available here or wait for an overseas trip to procure trendy and chic denims?  

Collaborative Effort - Need of the Hour
The positive and prospective future of the Indian denim industry lies in the collaborative effort by the denim manufacturers and the fashion designers fraternity.

Proenza Schouler Denim Line Internationally, collaborations between high-fashion designers, brands and denim manufacturers are the order of the day. Last year Dow Fiber Solutions partnered with Paige Premium Denim to launch DOW XLA™ fiber in exclusive “Paigeaholic Jeans”.

Vivwnee Westwood Denim Line Wranglers collaboration with Adam Thomson & Nicholas-Guy Smith, Proenza Schouler (a high-end line of women's apparel) with J Brand, Vivienne Westwood with Lee Jeans are among the noteworthy collaborations for Summer and Fall 2010 collections.

Levi Strauss is perhaps leading the collaboration revolution to bring out limited and unique collections for the different markets. Collaboration with Japanese designer, Junya Watanabe for printed jeans collection, collaboration with the Cone Mills factory for Vintage 501®XX 1915 collection.

Jattinn Kochhar, opines “A lot can be achieved in the field of denim with the variety available in terms of colours and styles. However, one needs a different set up for designing denims since denim in itself is a totally different area. None of the big manufacturing houses (eg. Arvind) or others are working with the designers. There has to be a collaborative effort by the mills and designers to explore the real potential of denim fabric."

He also feels that the Indian consumer needs to be educated about denim, as a large number of Indians still perceive denim as a thick fabric and are not fully aware about fit, cut, fabric weights and the fact that their are different variety of denims for summer and winter.

Proenza Schouler Denim Line The thick denim is a coarser denim with a tighter and heavier weave, usually offering a minimal amount of stretch and are best for colder weather. Light weight denim the weave is tight but not dense, allowing these to be ideal for jeans and other denim garments for summers. Choosing the right fit and cut are also very essential to finding a pair of jeans which are comfortable and drape well.

Well informed consumers are better able to appreciate the finer nuances of different types of fabrics and the value addition to a garment using processing and finishing techniques. An educated consumer is more likely to be a repeat consumer.

Samant Chauhan, subscribing to a similar view that a collaborative approach is the way forward feels “India has been mainly seen as a sourcing hub. There are lot of exporters, who can make a mark with their denim brands internationally but they are not doing it. They have to work on the new ideas with young designers who are coming up with fresh concepts and ideas. This is the right time for the industry to connect with each-other. Designer denims are not regular high fashion garments."

According to the reports India holds a huge market potential for premium denim jeans right now. We continue to hear about well-known premium denim brands like Diesel and Replay looking at entering the Indian market and existing international brands like Pepe and Wrangler planning expansion of their retail network.

Indians are ready for anything which is really luxurious. If we give denims a real designer look, then the prospects are bright”, stress  Parvesh and Jai.

Vikas Pilania, Spencer’s Retail Limited also feels that the Indian market is ripe for designer denim brands and says, “The future of denim in India is wide open to newness and innovations of both fit and washing. The premium denim trend is just starting to show up in the local market and the demand will continue to grow. It's a very exciting time to be a denim brand in India, as the possibilities are endless.

However, Jattinn Kochhar has a different view and feels that even though a luxury market exists in India, it is not really as big as it is projected to be. Like many of the youngsters, he personally does not like the cuts and fits for jeans available in the Indian market, be it a domestic brand or International. He prefers to purchase jeans from Bangkok where he is able to find the perfect fit easily.

Denim by Premiere VisionInternational exhibitions and shows for fabric and trend forecasting for upcoming seasons have been around for quite some time, but the versatility of denim which puts it in a different segment has heralded a trade show specifically dedicated to the denim industry, Denim by Première Vision, the one-stop-shop denim show for weavers, accessories' manufacturers, laundries, garments & finishing companies, fibers producers, etc. There is a strong need for such denim-dedicated shows in India - which shall enable the designers and manufacturers to come close and understand each other's perspective. It is very important that the industry makes an all-out effort to attract not only the established designers, but it must also try and reach out to the budding designers in the design schools across the country.

India has recently witnessed a few collaborative efforts with Arvind Ltd. having formed collaborations for their various denim lines, Levi's collaborated with Tarun Tahiliani for an exclusive range, and most recently, Killer Jeans joined hands with Narender Ahmed, all of these are significant steps in the right direction but just mark the beginning.
 
There is a long path to be traversed to bridge the gap between the fashion designers and the denim manufacturers in India. It is imperative to not just form collaborations, but also necessary to organize events and tradeshows to provide provide a unified platform and a congenial environment for forming and promoting sustainable collaborations.
 
Please do write back to us at info@denimclubindia.org, and share your thoughts and ideas.
 
InDIGO - The One & Only Denim B2B expo In Asia - by Denim Club India :: Denim Conference - Exhibition - Awards
 
 
Denim Club India © 2008-2013
Denim Club India Portal is Managed by Real Time Consultants