The fashion industry in India has evolved with culture and media playing pivotal roles to enhance the fashion trends and people’s individual sense of fashion. In fact, one knows no limits to what one will achieve if one traverses a course on fashion designing, say for example a B.Sc fashion designing course. I state this with an intense sense of conviction and future forecast even though I’m no expert on predicting future trends simply because of the trajectory of the fashion industry, which is a lot of creativity teamed with killer marketing strategies. Before I go into these details, it is important to state that aspiring fashion designers, fashion enthusiasts will find ample opportunities by signing up for one of the fashion courses in Kolkata.
Fashion courses in Kolkata
There are several fashion institutes besides NIFT. Some of the premier institutes to offer fashion courses in Kolkata are iLEAD Media College, NIFT, INIFT. These institutes not only offer courses that are designed by professionals from the fashion industry but also provide a 100% placement guarantee.
What to expect from pursuing a course in fashion from iLEAD
- B.SC in Sustainable Fashion Design & Management
- Bsc in fashion designing is a great degree to go for. iLEAD offers a B.SC. in Sustainable Fashion Design and Management.
- Course structure
- The course structure of iLEAD has international recognition and is research specific, with particular emphasis on sustainable fashion and sustainable design.
- The highlights of the curriculum are cultural contexts and evolving fashion movements, ethical issues about fashion, styling, design studio, branding, how to be a fashion entrepreneur that a student learns over the course of six semesters. There are multiple career options such as fashion consultant, fashion designer, fashion photographer creative head, curator, stylist, blogger, costume designer and these are only a few of the names.
- Fashion courses in Kolkata and particularly at iLEAD are aimed to make students of fashion unlearn the stereotypical concept of fashion and trends that meet unrealistic standards to achieve excellence.
- One of the reasons why one must opt for a BSC fashion designing course from iLEAD is the detailed research iLEAD has done and has shared the statistics on their webpage. The information on the fashion design course on iLEAD’s page mention that the course, structured by MAKAUT is important because “the fashion industry is worth over $3 million dollars”, “the garment industry in India constitutes a staggering 25.8% of GDP.”
- Eligibility criteria
- It is very easy to pursue bsc fashion designing from iLEAD because the eligibility criteria is not taxing. A minimum 50% score and above in Plus 12 examinations that will include the subject of English, sitting for a CET, and an interview at iLEAD will determine a candidate’s understanding of fashion and consequently, admission.
- iLEAD’s goal is to see that its fashion students become visionaries of fashion
We realize that fashion courses in Kolkata and particularly B.Sc fashion designing course from iLEAD is not aimed at only manufacturing professionals in the fashion industry, but creating visionaries of fashion. Around four years back, in an interview published by THE TELEGRAPH, guitarist Amyt Datta had expressed that an individual cannot pretend to be someone who they are not, and it will reflect in how well they carry themselves. This statement carries a lot of depth and needs to be philosophized by students who are very serious about fashion. I am glad that the scenario is changing in India which means indie fashion houses and designers are adopting a more sustainable and environmentally friendly approach in their business and which behaviorally grows a sense of brand awareness and creates brand loyalty in the minds of individuals.
Sustainable fashion practices
- Media reports in recent years have seen huge traffic in talking about how the fashion industry releases more carbon than the automobile industry.
- Former Vogue India Editor Bandana Tewari had stated in an interview the relationship between identity politics and fashion by throwing light on Gandhi’s decision to take up khadi and reject foreign clothes for the sake of nationhood and patriotism. In retrospect, what seemed to be a political movement is reinterpreted as a cultural movement where consumerism trends are actually getting reevaluated as fashion aficionados like Bandana Tewari urge people to adopt sustainable fashion practices instead of being a shopaholic and blindly following trends.
Brand awareness & brand loyalty
Sabyasachi said, the Indian customer usually has a bastardized approach towards fashion. They are spoilt and more than believing in the brand, they expect customized ensembles.
- One Indian fashion designer Manish Arora in RanaMajumdar’s book CAPITAL had expressed dissatisfaction at the cultural attitude of Indians to buy and get attracted to everything that is on-trend and follow brands blindly, and one of the reasons being to flex ones financial and socio-economic background. Arora further emphasized how India has a long way to go before it can claim to be ‘fashion conscious’, which explains why fashion design courses are a need and no longer a luxury. Every individual from different backgrounds desires to create a style of their own, that defines their personality. As opposed to an Indian, an individual in Japan, who sports a Louis Vuitton bag will when asked about their fetish for the Louis Vuitton brand tell the entire history of Louis Vuitton and why they feel partial or at home following this brand. It is important to quote Manish Arora from RanaMajumdar’s book CAPITAL: “When you meet people in Delhi who are supposed to be the fashionistas or divas: they have the right products in their hand but they know nothing. It is not like Japan. Even there, fashion is not so old but people understand fashion. Ask a woman in Delhi why she carries a Louis Vuitton bag, and she’ll tell you that’s the bag you’re supposed to carry. Ask a woman in Japan, and she’ll tell you the whole history of Louis Vuitton”.
Fashion is also about embracing the unconventional, and the nonheteronormative
- I am sure that B.Sc fashion designing courses offered by iLEAD will help students to rethink fashion and consumerism and also take into account that fashion cannot be morally as well as ethically restricted to a heteronormative stereotype.
- A 2017 article published in the online portal HOMEGROWN talked about “11 Unconventional Indian Models Who Are Breaking Away From Industry Norms”. The article, by Cara Shrivastava, reported that Anjali Lama, who happens to be the first-ever transgender model to have ramp walked at a fashion event. The article further cited the journey of drag queen Alex who has dismantled all stereotypes in fashion. Few other models who banked on their unconventional approach to fashion and talked about their journey in the industry and making their own fashion statements and setting unconventional trends. Besides, these days plus size models are also featured on magazines and are seen at ramp walks.
Fashion course at INIFD
- The alumnus of INIFD is over 5 lakhs. This is merely the tip of the iceberg. INIFD is the one and only educational organization that represents itself at London Fashion Week, New York Fashion Week and Lakme Fashion Week.
Local fashion brands
- Indie local brands all over India and of course in Kolkata have gained immense traction, thanks to social media marketing and influencer marketing on Instagram and IGTV.
- Some of the local brands in Kolkata to take inspiration from and amp up one’s individual and self stylized sense of fashion are Dreamers&Weavers, LataSita, Silai, Mulmul, Torani, Weavers Studio, RimiNayak, Paromita Banerjee, BOBO.
- Online entrepreneurs of fashion like WHY SO BLUE LOVE, BOHEMIAN DREAMS, SUTA, CHAKORIEETHNIC, are always creating looks with and building the image of their brands by actively engaging in Instagram and Facebook. This has resulted in a number of fashion enthusiasts, irrespective of the fact whether they are pros or amateurs recreate the looks and stylization of the fashion designers and emulate the respective brands. This boosts the business of fashion entrepreneurs.
- Nowadays, various cultural movements are aligned with building brand awareness of countercultural fashion designers ranging from avantgarde to minimalist designs to drag attires.
One cannot, in the holistic sense, filter out fashion from one’s sexual politics, understanding of cultural identity, notions of environmentally friendly approach that the courses offered by institutes such as iLEAD focus on. Thus fashion courses in Kolkata will help those aspiring to be a part of the fashion industry gain from in both the academic as well as professional perspective, of what constitutes fashion.
Author Bio: Swastisha Mukherjee is a student of media studies. She aspires to be a writer and filmmaker. She has published her work in two books and has experience in theater and ad film. Her other interests also include reading, especially graphic narratives, watching anime movies.