If premium whiskey brand Johnnie Walker appropriated “Keep Walking” as its famous advertising line, other liquor brands seem to say “keep ramp walking”.

The recently concluded four-city promotion by Kyndal India, distributors for Sweden’s Absolut vodka in India, is a case in point. Absolut Elegance saw young women from Delhi, Ludhiana, Kolkata and Pune walking the ramp, hoping to bag a modelling contract with Absolut.

Similarly, the Blenders Pride Fashion Tour went to the top metros in the country and Seagram India tasted fashion as they roped in fashion designers including the likes of Aki Narula, Ashish Soni, Malini Ramani, Manish Malhotra, Ranna Gill, Rocky S and Tarun Tahiliani for its brand events. Vodka brand Smirnoff and beer brand Kingfisher have flaunted their association with fashion for years.

But where do style and spirits meet? Sunil Alagh, chairman SKA Advisors said, “Liquor companies find it perfect to be associated with fashion as their target consumers follow the same lifestyle. ”

As liquor advertising is banned in the country, this works as a surrogate promotion.”

However, Siddharth Banerji, director, Kyndal India, insisted that the promotions were not a form of surrogate advertising. “We don’t believe in surrogate advertising. We want to create a connection between the country’s youth and our brand. Fashion is the best way to connect with the youth,” he said.

Seagram India’s Assistant Vice President Bikram Basu agreed. He said, “The Indian consumer landscape is evolving very fast. Fashion and lifestyle changes are a key expression of one’s self.”

According to Banerji, fashion has taken on in a big way in India and a brand like Absolut, which promises to be “an iconic and contemporary brand known to trigger creative connections” is a perfect match with fashion.

And the effort to achieve a brand recall is evident as contestants at the Absolut event walked onto stage holding a bottle of the vodka.


One of the world’s best known fashion and lifestyle magazines, Vogue, is coming to India next year, its publisher Conde Nast Publications Inc. said Monday.

Vogue will join a long list of international fashion and lifestyle magazines seeking to expand their presence in India, where rising middle-class incomes have fueled unprecedented consumerism in recent years.

While magazines like Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Men’s Health, and Maxim publish through joint ventures, Conde Nast will own and operate Indian Vogue, the New York-based company said in a statement.

“Unlike most other Western publishers, Conde Nast will own and operate its own magazines in India rather than publishing through a joint venture or a license,” said Jonathan Newhouse, chairman of Conde Nast International. “This approach reflects Conde Nast’s deep commitment to the Indian market,” he said.

However, it was not immediately clear how Conde Nast could publish on its own in India, where the government allows foreign companies to own only 26 percent equity in Indian media ventures.

Officials at the Information and Broadcasting Ministry, which regulates media, could not be immediately reached for comment.

Vogue will be published from Mumbai, India’s entertainment hub. The Indian edition will be its 17th worldwide, the company said.

Conde Nast is the world’s leading publisher of lifestyle magazines like Glamour, GQ, Vanity Fair, Wired and Conde Nast Traveler.

Reports in Indian media earlier this year said the company plans to bring Glamour, Vanity Fair and Traveler to India if Vogue’s launch is successful.

Bollywood often acts as a launch-pad for young and hip fashion designers.

While Manish Malhotra dressed Urmila Matondkar in Rangeela, Anaita Shroff Adajania got designer assignment for the recent blockbuster Dhoom-2.

Today, the King Khan’s shades and ties in Don, designed by Aki Narula, are very much in vogue.

Manish Malhotra has come a long way since then to become Bollywood’s favorite fashion designer, bagging blockbusters like Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna and Kal Ho Na Ho and also the upcoming and much hyped Salaam-e-Ishq. The last one was in association with Vikram Phadnis who was won laurels for his latest collection presented at the recently concluded Lakme Fashion Week.

Creating that perfect look is so vital to liven up the character that even the directors, producers and the script writers spend months working ceaselessly with the designers.

As far as actresses are concerned, Rani Mukerji’s ethnic skirts in Bunty aur Babli and Bip’s styles in Corporate and unbelievably sensual outfits in Dhoom-2 have generated a craze among star gazers.

With a string of historic movies like Umrao-Jaan this year, and several on the way, designers have been presented with great opportunities that offer wide room for experimentation.

Another industry darling Neeta Lulla, currently working on epic Jodha Akbar explains, “I have spent months scouring the market for the right fabric and accessories for this period film.”

This is the kind of platform Bollywood has created for fashion designers who dedicate themselves to such projects, grateful for the opportunity, and work untiringly to creating magnum opuses on the celluloid!

A group of blind models paraded down the catwalk on Sunday in what organisers said was the first fashion show of its kind in India staged to try to combat stereotypes of disabled people.

Dressed in glittering Indian attire, over 30 blind women strode down the ramp without assistance in a show on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, capital of the western state of Gujarat.

‘I cannot see how I am looking in the new clothes but I am having a good time,’ said 23-year-old participant, Ekta.

‘I would hear about fashion shows and designer clothes on the television, but never dreamt of walking like models do,’ she said, as she draped a sequined, green sari over her shoulder.

The organisers said the fashion show, which had attracted around 200 people, was the first of its kind in India — a country where many of its 22 million disabled people face discrimination and are not awarded equal rights.

‘Blind people are not considered as a part of society, they are given boring and menial jobs to isolate them from the glamorous and exciting world,’ said Mukta Dagli from Pragya Chakshu Sanstha, a local charity for the visually impaired.

‘We want to bring the blind out of a dull dark life. Now let the world see them.’

The young women — who applied their own make up and dressed themselves — were given a week-long training course on how to walk down the catwalk by choreographers and on self-grooming.

‘We are young, beautiful and hope to do more shows to gain confidence to fight the darkness of our lives,’ said 25-year-old Shweta Kothari.

Did you know that Delhi is the unofficial hub for hot air ballooning in India? Have you checked out Joe’s Bikers, an informal club set up exclusively for bike lovers in Bangalore? Or would you want to be a witness to the fast and furious pace of arena polo in Hyderabad? Do you really think you know the city you live in? If not, check out the Discovery Travel & Living for such nuggets on your beloved city.

Foreign channels are airing advertorials and dedicated shows on Indian metros and their lifestyle in an effort to grab more attention.

Indian Rendezvous, a six-part series on six metros in India —Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Chennai, is aired every Thursday. The show features interesting vignettes of the cities like unique cooking styles, art and music, travel and adventure, et al. The channel has roped in celebrities like actor Sushma Reddy, singer-actor Vasundhara Das, director Nagesh Kuknoor, and actor Konkona Sen to anchor the shows based on the cities they hail from.

“I agreed to do the show because I love Mumbai and it was about showcasing Mumbai to the world through my eyes,” says Sushma Reddy, anchor for the Mumbai. She chose to showcase things she considers special about the city. “I went back to places that I had visited as a child like the Hanging Gardens and the boot house there. It was a nostalgic trip down my childhood years,” reminisces Reddy.

Besides India, the series will also be aired in the UK and Asia. Buoyed by the success of Great Indian Weddings which featured weddings of rich and famous Indians, this is Discovery Travel and Living’s second attempt to showcase India.

Says Aditya Tripathi, VP-Lifestyle Discovery India, “The topics covered in the show are relevant to people living in the city and to tourists. We have included both wellknown features of the city along with unconventional ones in the show.”

Actor-singer Vasundhara Das, who is hosting the Bangalore episode says, “Bangalore is a versatile city and this is what I have tried to showcase in the episode. There is so much happening there at any given point in time.”

In an attempt to take India to the world, the ministry of tourism along with CNN, has produced 60/45/30 seconds advertorials on India reflecting six different facets of India. Enhancing the glamour quotient on these snippets is ace golfer Jeev Milkha Singh who is promoting golf tourism in India, designer Tarun Tahiliani who will be hosting the fashion and shopping segments with model Saira Mohan.

Monica Tata, VP, advertising sales, India and South Asia, Turner International India, says, “India has always been a key market for CNN and will continue to be so. We have been covering issues intrinsic to India. We also have a series called Eye On focusing on nuclear energy, Bollywood, outsourcing, etc.”

A hair cut like Shahrukh, Salman or Hrithik, now dress up like them!

According to experts in the industry, Bollywood and Hollywood heavily influence the fashion terrain. Other than advertisement through various media level, the big fashion houses are taking the advantage of the filmi route for the publicity of their brands.

Movie lovers tend to pick up style ideas of the actors. The biggest fashion trend in the world always began with an actor or a movie. It makes sense for mainstream garment brands to tie up with films that reflect the personalities of their labels.

Now the fashion brands instead of relying only on the traditional forms of advertising, convey their ideas through atmosphere of the story. A movie is like a three-hour advertisement for the brand with the opportunity of showcasing an ample collection dressed in by different actors in the movie.

The line of clothing worn by the actors includes ties, shirts, designer saris, dresses that had a lot of colour, shimmer and were created for corporate, leisure, evening and workwear.