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…

Looking back, it’s rather difficult to believe that fashion weeks in India are 15 years old. I remember the time when there were few scattered individual shows done by India’s fashion designers that were more like social gatherings over drinks and dinner than commercial events that they are today.

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This season there are two interesting things about fashion weeks, first one happening in Mumbai next week and the one in Delhi after that. [Read more]

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A few years ago, in addition to showcasing their high value collections on the runway, some fashion designers have also started showing the same through exhibitions. They called it ‘the exposition.’ [Read more]

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When you hear ‘fashion victim’, the first and the only thing that may come to your mind will be that of some one who’s not in the right kind of outfit.

You are right. A fitted dress over an unfit body; a jacket with over sized shoulders; scarlet lip colour on a skin tone that warrants lighter or nude lip shades, et al constitute towards the ‘fashion victims’ clan.

But there are also other kinds of victims in this industry. One who is power hungry owing to which he/she leave everything else; the one who cannot be a model, but still swims around the circle claiming to be a model; a fashion designer who is ‘NOT’ a fashion designer; brands that are over eager to sponsor any crappy ‘fashion’ event, etc all part of the fashion victims of a different kind. And of course a bunch of journalists who become critics from the word go in their career.

I don’t get it when it comes to those who crave for power in this industry here. I don’t understand it at all. It’s not an industry of the size of its counterpart in Europe or the US or even anywhere close to it. Still some ‎of its members act ‘important’ and a few others suck up to them.

Then comes the models who are not even remotely connected to the serious shows or campaigns. The word ‘model’ is something for them to say that’s associated with glamour. “Oh, so what do you do?” you ask some one at a party and the likely answer will be “I am a model.”. Seen many like this. Model what? Coz, I’ve not seen you anywhere!

There have been a surge in the number of fashion weeks in India in the past. Most are now dead. But whenever some Khanna or Kapur started a fashion week, brands ran after them, especially liquor brands, to sponsor their events. I never understood why they did it. But they did it.

And finally comes the journalists. The ones who can “make or break” fashion designers or models. Wait, none of them can either make or break any one. No one gives a damn to what appear in the media these days because either they are paid for or done in lieu of that ad slipped into the magazine pages. In any case most of these ‘journalists’ don’t even know what they write. Armed with the instruction from their editors, they come to see “who wore what” or “whose top/skirt dropped” or “who tripped on the runway.”. Rubbish.

I see all these guys as victims of glamour. They desperately want to be in it because they think it’s cool.

No wonder then, I don’t see any dramatic progress happening here.

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Last season at the Lakme Fashion Week, I met the Alicia Kom. Seldom I get the feeling that some one can make it big in modelling in India, and that’s exactly what I felt about this Australian model (and I think I told her this too over our coffee sessions in between shows). [Read more]

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