Domestic market of 1.3 bn people offers huge opportunities for growth of any business including fashion items: Alpi Boylla, ex- Communications & Design Head, FDCI

Domestic market of 1.3 bn people offers huge opportunities for growth of any business including fashion items: Alpi Boylla, ex- Communications & Design Head, FDCI

Alpi Boylla is a fashion
industry professional with 18 years of experience. Former Communications and Design head at Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI), she runs a consultancy Fashion Capital India besides actively spearheading social impact organization ‘Save The Loom’, working to reform the handloom sector. Excerpts from the interview:

Q1. What are your views on status and future of fashion industry in India?

Ans: Organized fashion industry is on a southwards growth. But at the same time the industry is going through a churning process, more so in the post pandemic scenario to find its order. The domestic textile & apparel industry are worth approximately $100 billion. The Indian textiles and apparel industry contributed 2% to the GDP, 12% to export earnings and held 5% of the global trade in textiles and apparel in 2018-19. India’s textiles industry contributed 7%to the industry output (by value) in 2018-19.

The sector is also the second largest employer in India. All these numbers show huge potential for growth. Designer fashion industry is only a fraction of these numbers, but with increased awareness and demand for ‘Made in India’and the potential of our homegrown fashion aesthetics it’s a burgeoning sector. We have access to wide variety of fibers and hand weaving processes to make it unique as well. The future will see a global imprint of Made in India fashion, that values sustainable practices and coming out of slow making processes engaging more human hands, than assembly line fast fashion.

Q2. How do you see prospects of those likely to pursue

Careers in fashion industry?

Ans: Education in fashion, textiles and design has expanded in the past three decades providing for more professionals in the field. With increased specialization and India continuing to focus on being makers’ hub, the career opportunities for skilled professionals will only increase. The demand for technically skilled and design-oriented specialists will increase.

Q3. What are the attributes required to be successful as a fashion designer?

Ans. Discipline, Dedication, and Passion. Design needs to be seen as a problem-solving exercise, and that perspective will show up the immense potential the profession holds.

A domestic market of 1.3 billion people is massive for any business to grow. Creating fashion for fashion’s sake will not make the business thrive. One needs to develop intense knowledge on the process of making textiles, addressing various issues depending on the business ideology one wants to cater to, and have a robust backend supply chain.

Being a fashion designer can throw open many opportunities – but if one is looking at creating a brand, or a business, then one needs to brush up skills on other aspects of business as well from finance to marketing and media. Today there are specialized courses across various institutions that cater to these aspects in relation to the fashion industry.

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