December has always been traditionally known as the month of weddings. It was the period when extended family and members of the Indian diaspora assembled to celebrate joyous moments together. However, now, tastes are changing, and weddings are being held the whole year-round. This along with the growing population of youth, increasing income and ubiquity of social media is revamping the $50 billion Indian bridal market with weddings becoming more aspirational in nature.
Bridalwear adopts pastel colors, lighter embellishments
Bridalwear is becoming more informal with designers creating clothes that can be worn all years round. These designers are opting for sheer fabrics, pastel colors and lighter embellishments over the traditional red and pink palette. Ensuring the novelty designs for each occasion, designers are investing in marketing their brands. London -based retailer Aashni + Co, which stocks popular Indian brands like Abu Jani Sandeep Khosla, will start selling pieces for year-round weddings in 2020. The retailer has already invested in marketing and social media campaigns that are expected to bring positive outcomes for the brand.
These initiatives are also creating more opportunities of employment for brands. For instance, designer Tarun Tahilani recently added embroiderers and a few hundred other positions in related skills. Anita Dongre has an annual turnover of over 700 crore, after her bridal business grew 30 per cent in the last year. She recently opened a luxury bridalwear store in Kolkata.
Affluent Indians are also spending on outfitting family members and guests for the occasion. Brides are becoming conscious about the way their weddings are being documented. Designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee reveals some of his wealthy clients are even willing to spend even $30,000 to $1.5 million on their weddings.
International designers exploit Indian opportunities
Celebrity couples are opting for a mix of traditional Indian designers and international labels for their weddings. Isha Ambani chose an intricately detailed Abu Jani-Sandeep Khosla ensemble for her big day, while for events leading up to the wedding and reception parties she chose Valentino and Giambattista Valli pieces.
Indian bridalwear market also allows non-Indian designers to tailor offerings for local tastes. To exploit this potential, Giorgio Armani plans to launch a wedding-themed menswear range in Indian cuts, while Jimmy Choo will launch custom men’s shoes in India.
Canali, whose Maharaja style-inspired Nawab collection continues to generate year-long revenue, is one of the early players in Indian bridalwear market. Nepalese-American designer Prabal Gurung, who has dressed Bollywood celebrities introduced a Atelier Prabal Gurung line which is also been used for bridalwear. The designer created his first bridal lehenga for Indian-American client Anjuli Nanda Diamond this year. This red-color ensemble is targeted towards the hands-on client. With innovations like these, the Indian bridalwear market is growing to its full glory