Lakmé Fashion Week

Lakme Fashion Week, which brings together some of India’s most prominent designers, celebrities, socialites, businessmen, and sponsors, is probably the country’s most aspirational, influential, and glamorous fashion and lifestyle event. Every event draws more than 40,000 attendees and receives extensive pre- and post-event media attention. Additionally, no other fashion event in the world has the kind of digital engagement that the event does. With the goal of “Redefining the Future of Fashion and Integrating India into the Global Fashion World,” the event was conceptualised and developed. It is held twice a year, once in February for the “Summer/Resort” edition and once in August for the “Winter/Festive” version. The RISE fashion team works hard to develop an engaging event that connects with a number of key players in the fashion industry. A good example of this is the GenNext initiative, which has helped up-and-coming designers like Masaba Gupta, Rahul Mishra, Pero, and Nachiket Barve establish themselves in the Indian fashion market.

Historical Background

In its second decade, it has become India’s most prestigious fashion trend. Lakme, the most popular cosmetics brand in India, is the sponsor. In this event, the most prestigious and well-known Indian fashion houses present their works. The fashion show was designed to help Indian fashion establish itself on the international fashion scene. It was organised by the cosmetics company Lakmé and IMG Reliance Ltd., a name in fashion, entertainment marketing, and management. A collaboration between the Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI) and IMG gave birth to LFW in 1999 as Lakmé India Fashion Week (LIFW). Up until 2005, the show was mostly supported by Lakmé in Delhi. Monisha Jaising, Ritu Kumar, Rohit Bal, Tarun Tahiliani, and other designers participated in the maiden fashion show. Following the termination of Lakmé’s agreement with FDCI due to its inability to renew it, LFW relocated to Mumbai in 2006, while India Fashion Week persisted in Delhi.

Lakme's five-year agreement with the FDCI expired after the LIFW 2005, and the event was brought to Mumbai as a result. Both sides failed to reach an agreement on a new contract, which led to a rift. Lakme Fashion Week (LFW) was moved from Delhi to Mumbai, and Wills Lifestyle was brought on board as the event's main sponsor. The National Center for Performing Arts (NCPA) at Nariman Point hosted the 2006 Lakme Fashion Week, which was organised in partnership with IMG. The event featured shows from 115 designers, up from 61 the year before, including Manish Malhotra, Ashish Soni, and Sabyasachi Mukherjee. Wendell Rodricks, Ritu Beri, and Narendra Kumar served on the advisory board for the event.

Lakme Fashion Week (LFW) must be mentioned in any historical assessment of the development of India’s fashion industry. Even though it has only been around for a little less than 20 years, LFW is the most prestigious fashion show in the nation and undoubtedly the main venue for up-and-coming designers right now. However, the historic fashion event did not actually start out in this form. Even though it is now inextricably linked to Mumbai, the event began in Delhi. At the 2006 show in Mumbai, initiatives like the “Gen Next” and “Emerging Designer” show categories were first introduced, making LFW the nation’s top platform for up-and-coming designerstoday. Rahul Mishra and Swapnil Shinde, two well-known figures in contemporary fashion, were among the young talent showcased at the occasion.

Present Day

At the moment, the Lakmé Fashion Week Advisory Board includes people like Anita Dongre, Anamika Khanna, and Manish Malhotra. Many well-known designers, like Nachiket Barve and Masaba Gupta, were introduced through LFW’s Gen Next program. In the past 21 LFW seasons, 235 designers have displayed their creations. Young designers with potential can use Gen Next as a platform to get advice from well-known Indian designers and break into the global market. Another venue for emerging designers is the competition’s Emerging Designers category. During Lakmé Fashion Week, Bollywood actors including Kareena Kapoor Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Shraddha Kapoor, Shilpa Shetty Kundra, Nargis Fakhri, and many others have frequently walked the runway. Tarun Tahiliani’s legendary runway show with Padma Lakshmi took place in 2017.

At Lakmé Fashion Week in 2009, Naomi Campbell walked in Mai Mumbai attire for her charity Fashion for Relief to raise money for the victims of the November 26, 2008, terror attacks in Mumbai. The occasion featured clothing by Versace, Roberto Cavalli, and Dolce & Gabbana. Textiles and Handlooms Day, which was created to give artisans a platform, was renamed Sustainable Fashion Day for the winter/festival event of 2017. One of the day's highlights was the collaboration of five young designers and master craftsmen from the Paramparik Karigar group to create contemporary clothing using time-honored methods like dabu printing, shibori, and bagh.


Fashion Week was once regarded as a news event, with news about it appearing on the party pages of newspapers. That image was furthered by Bollywood’s well-known “showstopper” moments, kind alcohol sponsors, extravagant bridal-couture fashion displays, and hotel locations. Backstage chatter of afterparties would echo the following day. Fashion weeks have evolved and become more democratic over the last few years, just like the Indian fashion industry. The game of fashion has beenaltered by the corporatization of the governing organisations, which has resulted in corporate goliaths purchasing majority holdings in Indian design houses. The new reality, known as the "metaverse," and the main approach are digital impressions and reach. The emphasis is on storytelling, sustainability, and financial and retail growth. This third edition shows that while the bodies (FDCI and LFW) maintain their individual stature, it is assumed that they grow together as a single fashion week, learning from and leaning on each other’s strengths. They are taking a cue from international fashion weeks that are presented by a single body.

Updated on: 06-Dec-2022


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