Fusion wear or Indo-Western wear as it is commonly called, is fast catching up among women in the country. This rapidly emerging fashion category is revolutionising the country’s occasion wear market, where it’s embracing both the beauty of Indian traditional wear as well as the contemporary cuts of western wear.
According to Nidhi Yadav, Founder & Creative Head, AKS, “In the last few years, the fashion scenario in India has changed dramatically with fusion wear gaining immense popularity among urban women, especially working women. Today, women have more choices in their wardrobe with growing options like a long maxi dresses, skirts, crop tops, tunics, halter tops and sleeveless long spaghetti kurtas.”
“The introduction of new concepts like corporate dressing and statement attires are the prime disruptors in the market,” she adds.
More and more women are switching over to fusion wear like capes, lehengas, Indo-western tops, spaghetti kurtas, crop-tops, etc., for occasion wear and event specific dressing. Other ranges like A-line kurtas with pants or palazzos, flared fusion gowns and kurtis with saree-drapes, etc., are gaining popularity over traditional and voluminous attire.
Reinforcing the emerging trend Vikas Pacheriwal, Co-Founder, Raisin affirms, “The consumption pattern of fusion wear sees a tremendous demand throughout the year as women are incorporating Indo-Western wear in their everyday wardrobes. The fashion trend blends the sensibilities of Indian and Western styles that off er women a huge variety to choose from. Fusion wear also has the perk of looking good while being supremely comfortable.”
“The perception of fusion wear has changed from being drab to being receptive to various trends and styles. This style has spread far and wide to such an extent that it has now become a distinct category in itself owing to its versatility and comfort,” Pacheriwal states.
Market & Major Drivers
Rising presence of women in workplaces, increasing participation in social and outdoor activities, growth of e-commerce and e-tailing, and influence of fashion and entertainment industries have significantly spurred the growth of fusion wear market in India.
According to Pacheriwal, one of the biggest drivers of the fusion wear market is the changing lifestyle of women. “With western elements influencing the fashion market, women are readily accepting these changes in the form of Indian fusion wear. There is also an increase in the female workforce which in turn leads to a higher disposable income. The younger population is embracing traditional wear by going for traditional styles wrapped in modern silhouettes which is the essence of modern fusion of wear,” he says, adding, “With all these things, the market is proposed to grow twice its size by 2020.”
Why Fusion Wear?
The target audience of most fusion wear retailers is the growing Millennial population. As per Yadav, the elegance of traditional Indian wear and the comfort and functionality of western wear have transformed salwars into palazzos, churidars into leggings, patialas into skirts, kurtis into floor length dresses and even tunics. “Women who spend a major part of the day in offices and outside prefer attire which ensure them both style and buoyancy. Fusion wear is the best to meet this changing demand in urban women in the age bracket of 25 to 40 – the segment’s major target audience.”
While the segment is proving to be a critical market for fashion-forward and spirited women in big cities, it has caught the fancy of women across all demographics, not liming the trend to metro and urban cities only. Women in Tier II & III cities are receiving quality education today, working in both the public and private sectors with immense exposure to social media. They have a good amount of disposable income and are increasingly experimenting with their outfits, visiting shopping malls in nearby cities specially to get a hold of fusion collections. Thus, a lot of brands – both online and offline – are targeting these potential customers.
“These young and self-dependent women are gradually changing into fashion-forward buyers and are latching onto fusion wear. They are internet-savvy and are buying all the leading fusion wears brands on various e-tailing sites like Flipkart, Myntra, Zivame and Craftsvilla,” says Yadav.
Fusion wear has now become an inseparable part of women’s wardrobe simply because of the variety they are available in as well as due to the fact that the clothes are comfortable, yet stylishly cut, designed for all occasions.
“With a hike in women workforce in India, fusion wear has found a new demand for itself in the market that never existed owning to western formal wear being the prominent dress code for professionals. However, fusion wear is sure to continue to grow a lot in near future,” states Yadav.
“Fusion is an ideology that is being adopted across various sectors due to its tremendous potential, which goes for fashion too. Looking at how much it has to off er in terms of experimenting with different styles and statement looks women are looking for, fusion wear holds a great promise of growth in the coming years,” concludes Pacheriwal.
(With inputs from Gurbir Singh Gulati)