"Digital Fashion ' The Way to Go' - the fourth edition of FSW

Lakme Fashion Week Summer/Resort 2011 in alliance with Inter National Institute of Fashion Design (INIFD) the official knowledge partner, held the fourth edition of their Fashion Workshop Series (FSW). The focus of the Fashion Workshop this season is the "Future of Fashion' on the digital platform.

Fashion, like any other evolving industry, is capitalizing on the online platform to maximise its business potential and leverage the growing online consumer base. Staying at par with international fashion weeks, Lakmà Fashion Week has been continuously stimulating its online capabilities, to complement the Business of Fashion by providing online trade opportunities to designers and also providing a platform that offers access to the consumer global level.

Strapping itself on to the social media band wagon, besides Facebook and Twitter, this season LFW has launched LFW TV. Thus, further providing a stimulus to designers, enabling fashion enthusiasts worldwide to engage and experience fashion real-time, and eliminating the limitations of geography.

The renowned speakers on the panel included Christian Leone, Imran Amed, Maya Hari and Pearl Uppal. The workshop was moderated by Neeraj Roy, MD & CEO, Hungama Digital Media Entertainment which is South Asia's largest mobile & digital entertainment. He brought to light the use of online & mobile media, new technology, communication & interactivity. Also present at the workshop were Peter Levy, Senior Vice President, Managing Director of IMG Fashion Worldwide and Ravi Krishnan, Managing Director, IMG South Asia and Senior Vice President, IMG.

Imran Amed, Fashion Business Adviser, Writer, Entrepreneur and Founder & Editor of The Business of Fashion gave some insight into the digital era of the fashion industry. The Fashion industry 10 years ago was very closed and projected very controlled images that were conceived in ivory tower designer studios and offices which were mostly in Milan, Paris, New York and London. Today, the walls of those very ivory towers are starting to crumble. Amed says, "The voices of authority are no longer the fashion editors of major fashion magazines." He states that they could be a young blogger who creates a global following, they could be companies like Fashion and You and Gilt Group or they could also be platforms like Facebook and Twitter. People used to be skeptical and critical went it came to using social media and the internet as tool to communicate about fashion but now that has changed revolutionizing the global outlook of the fashion industry.

The workshop highlighted subjects like the expansion of the digital space, the involvement of the designer, retailer and the consumer, the issue of accessibility for the consumers and fashion labels alike, the consequences of technology on fashion and the business of e-commerce. Discussing these topics were

Christian Leone, VP, Brand Relations and Communications, Gilt Groupe, said that the traditional Indian designs and clothing is what the world is craving in terms of fashion. And with LFW he hopes to take those "Indian" designs back with him and to have a presence in India as well. With regards to The Guilt Groupe Leone stated, "We have made fashion more democratic." I terms of it being more accessible to people from different walks of life.

The students of INIFD were also part of this workshop. INIFD celebrates 16 years in its existence associating with India's premier fashion and lifestyle event - Lakme Fashion Week and has also been named the official knowledge partner or the nest 4 seasons as well. | By Vanessa Azavedo [vanessa(at)adgully.com]

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