Having taken Indian political scene by storm, Narendra Modi is making big waves even in the fashion world. Apart from strong persona and political acumen, his dressing style has also won him plenty of fans. who could imagine that a half sleeve ‘kurta’
would become the next big thing in fashion?
MODI AS STYLE ICON
“You can have whatever you want if you dress for it” said Edith Head, renowned American costume designer. No one can really say if the idea ever crossed Narendra Bhai Modi’s mind when he set out to become India’s 15th prime minister. The half-sleeve, long Kurta, his regular attire was just another piece of Indian clothing until September 2013 when his party declared him as PM candidate. Throughout his campaign and TV appearances, he was seen dressed in kurtas in various colours and hues, occasionally paired with a stole or jacket.
He gradually made his way into the hearts and minds of millions of Indians, young and old who watched his every move, right from what he did, said and even what he wore. Many times ‘brands make a man’ but there are also times ‘when man becomes a brand’. In Modi’s case, it is the latter. Today, Modi kurta has risen to fame, so much so that it has become a unique style statement and a brand new code of ‘power dressing’.
GENESIS OF ‘MODI KURTA’
The rise of Modi as PM from small town of Vadnagar, Guajrat to one of the country’s highest offi ces is as well the journey of his ‘style of dressing’; from the corridors of power to corridors of fashion. The ‘Modi Kurta’ is today a registered label owned by JadeBlue Lifestyle, an Ahmedabad-based men’s luxury clothing company. Its co-owners Bipin Chauhan and his brother Jitendra Chauhan have been associated with Modi for almost 25 years. Comments, Bipin Chauhan, MD, JadeBlue, “Our association with Narendra Modi dates back to year 1989. We have been making kurtas and other garments for him ever since.
In those days, we were a small tailoring set up.” In 1995, the duo established JadeBlue, a menswear store which later developed into a full-fl edged luxury menswear clothing company namely JadeBlue Lifestyle India engaged in retailing of exclusive clothing and fashion merchandise, bespoke tailoring and personalised services. However, they continued making clothes for Modi who kept on climbing the ladder of success of his political career. “Just like Modi, the kurta style also became popular. So, over ten years ago, we decided to give it a brand name and make it a trademarked label of ours,” says Bipin.
STYLE IN VOGUE
The style which Modi wears nowadays is in fact an improved version of kurtas which he sported years ago. Bipin, the designer of Modi kurta discloses that the half-sleeve look is originally invented by Modi himself and it has been perfected by JadeBlue as regards to its length and silhouettes, stitching and the entire look.
Jitendra Chauhan, CMD, JadeBlue, tells more, “The quintessential style, earthy and pastel shades, pure linen, khadi and khadi silk fabrics fused with our impeccable stitching give these kurtas a fresh and crisp look that has become a rage among Modi’s patrons as well as fashion buffs.” Available in more than 20 colours and two styles (half-sleeve and full-sleeve), Modi kurtas are retailed at all of our outlets in India as well as online on our offi cial website, Jitendra informs.
POWER OF FASHION
As per Chauhans at JadeBlue, in addition to Modi admirers in India, the famed-outfi t is fi nding favour among NRI clientele too, as it represents Indian culture and heritage with global outlook. They apprise that there is huge demand for Modi themed kurtas from Gujaratis in the US, the UK and East Africa. Apart from kurta, Modi jacket is also being well liked. Now, the company is planning to also register Modi jacket as its trademark brand. As of now, with an annual turnover of Rs 180 crore, JadeBlue Clothing Lifestyle operates 18 retail stores across 15 locations including Ahmedabad, Surat, Rajkot, Vadodara, etc. in Gujarat; Nagpur, Udaipur, Raipur, Indore and Hyderabad.