Designers tap small towns

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Two and three-tier cities like Surat, Nagpur, Goa, Pune and Ahmedabad are spelling big business for fashion designers. Growing Indian aspirations are responsible for this demand. The main factors are: growing awareness, fashion consciousness and greater purchasing power. All thanks to the growing roots of online business in the country where even a small town buyer can buy designers wear instead of coming to the city. Designer Payal Singhal retails in cities like Chandigarh and Surat apart from other small towns. She says clients approach her through emails and place orders. Designer duo Parvesh-Jai sell a lot of saris and lehengas in places like Raipur, Meerut and Ahmedabad. At Raipur, Sabyasachi saris costing Rs 2.5 lakh are regularly bought.

As much as 35 to 40 per cent of the business of Fashion and You , a leading online fashion retail website, comes from places such as Ambala, Bhubaneswar, Jammu, Gangtok and Siliguri. There has been a rash of store openings in recent years in such towns. They are stocking apparel like jumpsuits and palazzo pants which are flying off the shelves. They stock A-listers such as Rohit Bal and Rajesh Pratap Singh as well as upcoming designers like Siddhartha Tytler and Soumitra Mondal. Small town India is no longer small in its buying ability or in its appetite for fashion. And these towns are providing a ready and growing market for many fashion designers, especially upcoming ones who are deemed more affordable.