Ritu Kumar believes Bollywood's influence on the Indian fashion industry is "heavy" but having big movie stars as showstoppers does not take the limelight away from their work. The 74-year-old celebrated designer, who is known for dressing big stars like Kareena Kapoor Khan and Priyanka Chopra Jonas among others, said the trend of roping in a celebrity showstopper benefits both the star and the couturier.
"Bollywood's influence on the Indian fashion industry is very heavy, because it is one of the most visible mediums and it is a great PR that they do for anybody and the clothes they wear, and I think this is there to stay, however it is becoming very multi-dimensional," Kumar told PTI.
She believes the trend is fruitful for Indian fashion designers as it gives them more visibility.
"Showstoppers is a word that they use, but the question is that on ramp they represent a known image and that known image has a great record. So that is the reason why a lot of clothes are put on the showstopper because the recall is better, so it's a marketing effort more than anything else. I don't think it takes away attention from the clothes - I think they normally complement each other," she added.
Kumar was one of the first Indian fashion designers to establish herself across the country and abroad and as the label completes 50 years she says her journey to bring Indian tradition in forefront still continues.
"Design and textile in India is a product of skills and wisdom passed down generations. Ritu Kumar, the brand, has always embraced this heritage. This is the USP of all our lines. My work is constantly evolving within an aesthetic which is sophisticated both in the eastern and western sense, with each of the collections making a contemporary statement in a fast changing modern India," she said.
The designer has been retailing in Europe since 1970s but she is proud that she decided to follow the traditional path rather than surrendering to the need of capturing the market in West.
"We tend to be very traditional. This however doesn't really mean that every state in this country will be wearing one single item or bridal wear," she said.
Kumar added that ever state in India has its own culture and customs and hence it is important to create garments "keeping the sentiment and the religious feelings of the country and people in mind".
The designer, who is currently showcasing at the ongoing Vogue Wedding Show, is working with a French designer to bring in more sophisticated cuts into her new collection celebrating her 50 years in the industry.