About Vinod Nair

Stepping into fashion was pre-meditated for Vinod Nair. Hailing from a small town in Kerala, where men wore dhotis like mini skirts, most women smelt like drums of coconut oil, he thought the only way to size up pretty girls and still not get hit by their stilettos was by writing about them. So he started that in 1991 when fashion was still small here. Writing, of course, was incidental. In 2004, Vinod Nair was awarded “Best Fashion Journalist” at the first fashion awards in the country, F-Awards. Fashion has gone a long way since then… but he still stands where he started…

Last week I two separate mails from two separate brands with one saying a Bollywood celeb sitting on the front row of their fashion show abroad and the other brand saying the Bollywood lady wore its outfit while doing something in Noida.

Brands I suspect are getting a bit desperate to get attention. Reason why I say this is because they either get the wrong person at the right place or the right person at the wrong place. Well, whatever the case may be, none of these so called celebrities are brand loyal too… so in effect they are not really endorsing these brands.

Lets start with a foreign fashion show. Bollywood A listers won’t go just because a brand tells them they will be seated on the front row and they will be flown first class. That leaves with the has-beens and B or C class actors. As such they got nothing to do and when brands invite them to the shows they are more than happy to oblige for that two minutes of fame that will never convert into either more chances back at home or even the minutest chance of making it into the Hollywood! Of course, they also know that these brands approach them because a Shah Rukh or a Deepika aren’t available…

Then they get to London or Paris for the shows and the fun starts there. No one recognizes them there. While the rest of the world and its cats are getting mobbed by the paparazzi and the internations PRs scurrying around to please all the members of the international media, our Sharon Stones stand… well, like a stone… embarrassed and red faced as they get no attention. Then, that hurdle being jumped with difficulty, they go and place their derriers on the assigned seats… of course, the front row.

Usually, after you are seated there is a 20 minutes to half hour gap before the actual show starts. This is when every one talks to every one… well, not quite every one. Our B class star is sitting with no one to talk to. Guest on her left is talking to the guest on her right… she can almost feel the whiff of wind coming from both the mouths, but she has no one to talk to. Difficult moments pass and the lady (or the male star from B-wood) prays the show starts soon so that he/she can get the hell out of the place and hit the bar and down a few drinks (of course the brand pays for everything).

Next day, the supplements carry big pictures of these ‘stars’ on ‘front rows’ attending famous fashion shows along with quotes from these people saying how wonderful the ‘cut’ and the ‘silhouettes’ were!

You must be thinking how terrible I am saying all these, but what I said above are all true. No one gives a damn in the West unless you are a Shah Rukh Khan or a Kareena, Katrina or Deepika.

But I understand that brands spend all the money because they could do with all the mileage that it can get. While else would a famous brand cloth a star going to Noida or Lokhandwala? Not sure, whether it is a two way benefit… but sure, the ones who have nothing else to do get the chance to travel even when they face total ‘who the hell are you?’ look from everyone there.

(but then they realize this only when they land there!)

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