Fashionably Rite

As Bridal Asia turns 15,its founder Divya Gurwara says why couture week is not competition

Written by Jagmeeta Thind Joy | Published:October 5, 2013 5:47 am

The use of adjectives ‘big’ and ‘fat’ in reference to an Indian wedding is something we are now accustomed to,recession or not. An estimated 2,000 couples tie the knot in India every day and according to a report published this August in the internationally acclaimed portal,Business of Fashion,the Indian wedding industry is currently estimated at $38 billion. But number crunching is something Divya Gurwara has not really indulged in.

Steering Bridal Asia,one of the oldest fashion and wedding expositions in the country,Gurwara,the founder and CEO says it’s her focus on quality and consistency that have helped her carve a niche. The expo’s 15th edition begins in the the city today.

It started in 1999 with a hand-picked selection of designer labels and jewellery brands. Even today,the focus is on the bride,though the groom and the home get attention too in the three-day event. The number of participants has steadily grown from 40 (since the debut) to 91 in this edition.“Our selection includes a good mix of high-end designers to newer talent,” says Gurwara. This year’s edition packs in collections by Sabyasachi Mukherjee,Anju Modi,Manish Arora,Gaurav Gupta,Honey Waqar (Pakistan),Nikasha,Ekaya,Nupur Kanoi,and Siddharth Tytler to an enviable line-up of jewellery labels.

The last two decades have seen the rise of fashion weeks,including a dedicated bridal couture week but Bridal Asia has created its own identity. “I don’t see a fashion week or a couture week as competition simply because we are not targeting retail buyers but the consumer directly,” says Gurwara,who was one of the first to bring in designers from across the border,“but,our focus will always be the Indian market.”

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