FASHION DEMONETIZED

MEHER CASTELINO | Dec 15, 2016

Why are you all looking so sad? It’s the festive season so the fashion business should be rocking.

Are you joking? It is the worst Christmas and New Year Seasons we have ever had.


Why what happened?

People are not taking delivery of garments they gave advance for since they don’t have money to pay the balance amount.

Really, I am surprised are they willing to forego the advance and lose money?

Well currency maybe demonetised and the trickledown effect is felt in the fashion business.

I thought only in fashion the trickledown effect is seen from Haute couture to prét-a-porter.

It has now happened in fashion too. Even my bridal collections have been cancelled and some Mehndi and Sangeet outfits are being returned since they are too heavy. Customers want lighter simpler creations.


That is sad, but bridal wear is supposed to be heavy, not light and simple.

A bride came with just Rs 2000 for her wedding outfit, which was enough to buy only the sleeves of the choli.

Oh that is so bad. Fashion has to be glamorous and Red Carpet worthy when the festivities start.

Even my fashion store has a problem.


Why are you worried, you are selling not designing?

I have had to return the expensive clothes to the designers and now have to stock my High Fashion Boutique with pavement fashion since that is all that my customers can afford because of the tight purse strings.


That is really sad; fashion is really taking a beating because of economic reforms.

My POP UP fashion events are now at a standstill.

Why, they are just once-in-six-months events so that should not suffer?

Well the six months are over this month, so I was supposed to have a grand POP UP event but now I have competition.

In what way do you have competition?

All my regular customers are selling their personal clothes through their own POP UP events to earn some money, since their husbands don’t have any spare cash to give them. Now they have to make some pocket money themselves by selling their designer clothes at rock bottom prices.

This is really a sad scene. Fashion is moving back in time this way.

Women are looking so dowdy and badly dressed these days, since they can’t buy the latest trends in fashion?


Why do you say that?

They are pulling out old worn out clothes from their store rooms, some are torn with holes but they have to “Make do and Mend” just like they did during World War II.


Austerity at times is good.

Do you know the other day a bride asked me to fix her great, great, great, grandmother’s wedding sari, which was in shreds so she could wear it since she cannot buy a new one?

Did you fix it?

I tried but the minute I put needle and thread to it, the whole sari disintegrated in my hands.

How sad, what did the bride do?

She got married in her favourite jeans and T-Shirt wearing roadside jewellery. Fashion has now truly been demonetised.

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Sunaina Suneja

Enjoyed it! Dire straits...

Mini M

This blog is really funny but true. Fashion is going through a hard time after demonetisation. It will take a while to recover.

Jasmeen G Dugal

It's very true. Where at one time Emporio was packed today it was eerily empty. Store owners and managers rued that all their customers used to pay hard cash and now no one wanted to leave a cash trail! Demonization Of Fashion indeed!

Dr Ela Dedhia

Its true but will settle down soon. Very well represented the essence of change.

Wendell Rodricks

Though this is a joke article, the situation is serious ☹️. Forget about weddings. It is so not the right time to marry. 😇 Runaway brides with heirloom saris are trending😂

Kaumudi Naithani

Nice one Meher, only a problem for people with black money.... I'm still shopping - business as usual ... :-)

G. K. Kuruvila

Satire at it`s best. Nice one Meher.

Kaumudi Naithani

Nice one Meher, only a problem for people with black money.... I'm still shopping - business as usual ... :-)

Air Commodore T.T.Job

The quality of married life does not depend on an expensive wedding garment. If so, getting married in jeans should be acceptable. Money saved on the expensive wedding garment can be put to better use. Any way, in most cases the wedding garment is used only once except for the lady who got married 11 times and is in current news.

Ruby Vatcha

That was really funny. I guess people just want everything new all the time and don't even want to be seen again in the same outfit. Well I guess this will make them think twice and value what they have.
Wishing you also a very Merry Christmas and a Great New Year.


Neelima Agrawal

'The trending topic. Your blog shows that the fashionable Designer Wear engine was fuelled by only those with black money. Or aren't the designers accepting credit cards? Well said Meher.

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CONSTANT PHOTO-OPS

MEHER CASTELINO | Dec 1, 2016

You know when you become a celeb you have to be in the news all the time.

Really why do you have to do that?


Don’t you know that if you are not seen in the media daily you might as well be dead?

That’s a bit drastic don’t you think?

Not at all, I am a Bollywood celeb I have to make use of every moment of my life to turn it into a photo-op.

Oh dear how do you manage to do that?

It’s done with two very important things.

What two things?


It is done by having a photographer and PR person with me 24 x 7.


24 x 7, that’s a bit too much!

Not at all, they even sleep next to my room, if in the middle of the night there is a photo-op I want to publicise.


But I thought celebs only had PR and photographers when they enter, leave, airports or go to events?


That is so passé. Now my photographer and PR have to be with me everywhere.


Really how is that possible?


If I attend my best friend’s wedding they are there. They are there when I visit the gym, parlour, shopping, exercise, yoga, birthdays, hairstyling, press conferences, launches, you name the event and they are there.


Isn’t it a little tiresome having them around all the time?

Not at all, they photograph and publicize my every thought - like should my staff be happy, sad, smiling, my love life, my highs, lows, sickness, health, everything that happens in my life has to be photographed and publicised.

That is revealing too much of your personal life isn’t it?

No, even when I brush my teeth in the morning, wash my face, of course having a bath and changing clothes is shot very discreetly. But I want everything to be recorded visually and published.

I see sounds a bit scary.

You know now it’s the visual effect on one’s popularity with social media being so strong. Interviews and fashion features are not important. Now it is photo-ops that make a difference in a celeb’s life.


I suppose you know better.


Besides, I have to battle with the competition, which is very keen right now.

What competition?


There are new celebs coming up thanks to media-net every day and I have to count the number of images that are published of these newbies and make sure I have more images in all media.

This is really frightening; don’t you think you should concentrate on your acting and not these trivial things?

My acting skills are not important, what is more important is how my fans see me every day and so every photo-op has to be milked dry.

The PR and photographer seemed to be more attached to you than your partner or your husband when you get married.

Of course, if my husband does not accept them as part of me, then I will not marry him. After all photo-ops are my life and that is not possible without my photographer and PR person!

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Shailini Sheth Amin

Thank you for sending me your blogs. They are funny and makes me smile…
Do keep them coming and stay in touch… x


Mini M

Superb subject. Yes we see these celebrities posing for photos all the time which is really boring. This new trend of wearing fancy labels when going in and out of airports is so silly. At times one wonders whether they are really going or coming or are they just posing for their private photographers? How come photographers are always present when stars are at airports?

Vijay Srinivasan

Looks like the trend is there but some aspects do sound extreme. Maybe some are just meant to be funny and not real-- like having a photographer sleep in their residence.

Dipankar Zalpuri

Lol.. These are blinding facts but so true. Great candid compilation as always Meher :) Keep it real. Cheers

Wendell Rodricks

Better not to have a PR agent, focus on real fashion and sales and lead a stress free life

Sunaina Suneja

I am awaiting your piece on Fashion, Demonetized !

Ela Dedhia

Photo ops so true. Its not only the true picture of celebs but of commoner also. Meher you hit on the nail. But I wonder, it maybe helping them too

Neelima Agrawal

Dear Meher,
"You have addressed this condition called "Athazagoraphobia."- The fear of being forgotten, that has afflicted not just people in showbiz but many insignificant wannabes with smart phones and social media accounts. Its an epidemic out there..."


Seema Dhawan

GREAT.....

Ruby Vatcha

Thanks Meher,
I think the world is getting crazier and most people are insecure or want everything instantly. They don't want to go from the bottom and work their way to the top. They all want to grab everything and thus losing out on experience and the satisfaction of having worked. A pity.


Jasmeen G Dugal

That's true! So hungry are "stars" for photo-ops they inform media and photographers of their "surprise photo-op" at airports a day before, my former photographer tells me.

Kaumudi Naithani

Lovely one Meher. I have no comment except a conversation i had with an acquaintance i know who has become relatively famous in the industry. I am of course happy for her success however i will let the conversation speak for itself. Let us call her Madam X
Me: Great to see you and so happy with your success. I always see you in the papers.
Madam X: Ya but these photographers and critics are always after me and critiquing my style and what i am wearing. Just see my page in HHC ( High Heel Confidential) . Look at what they have said about me in this post. I was dressed casually because i just dropped by as a favor to a friend on the way to the airport.
Me: But that comes with the territory. They talk about you because you are relevant. Should you not be flattered?
Madam X: Yes but they are just so invasive. They do not respect our feelings. People are putting hurtful comments. How can they just write what they want about how i look etc etc
Me: Again, that is the price of fame. Everyone goes through it. Ignore this or stop posing for pics if this is too much to handle.
Our conversation kind of ended here because ... well it is obvious, its not like she wants to stop posing for the photographers. I think the complaining is just a veneer to hide the vanity.


Air Cmde T.T.Job

One option is to marry the photographer or the PR guy. Then there are no problems related to Hubby

GIMMICKS NOT FASHION

MEHER CASTELINO | Nov 15, 2016

Do you know today in fashion it’s not the collection that matters?

Really, then what matters?


It’s the fabulous innovative gimmicks that one attaches to fashion that make all the difference when it comes to grabbing eyeballs and publicity.

What do you mean by that?

Haven’t you noticed how designers think of different gimmicks to catch the media’s attention?

Tell me about them.

There was this designer who had a virtual show so the media raved about it.

Yes, I remember but now it’s very common.


Then there was a designer who put the whole family’s photos on the garments and the press gave reams of publicity.


Oh dear but how were the garments?

Please remember the garments are not important the gimmicks are.


Okay I see.


Then there was a designer who brought a top filmi legend who is a recluse, on the ramp as a showstopper and the media went wild.


But how was the collection?


Don’t remember that since there were only images of the legend in the media.


Oh dear that is sad.

There was a designer who claimed to have given half the sales money from garments to the biggest charity in the country after the show and the media loved it.

But how was the collection?

Please don’t keep asking that question, gimmicks are more important than fashion now.

Okay that is crazy.

Then there was this designer who brought challenged people on the ramp since the collection was very weak but the media had to love it since they couldn’t criticise it, because of the noble cause.


That is a very sneaky way of getting positive publicity for the show.


There are designers who tie-up with automobile/motor cycle brands and say they are inspired by the colours and the press praises them since they would like to get some advertisements from the brand for their publications.

But how was the collection?


That is not important it’s the gimmick that catches the eye. I have heard of designers using everything from hamburgers, hotdogs, cold drinks, lunch, dinner, breakfast, tea, coffee, chocolate, cocoa, ice cream, bhel puri, pani pouri, ragda pattis, as inspiration so that the media will notice them.

All this sounds like a street side menu or a coffee shop snack list, what about the collection?

Please don’t keep asking about the collection when the gimmicks are so tasty.

Okay I won’t.

I have also heard of fashion collections inspired by tourist spots, holiday destinations, health foods, spas, health resorts and even medical equipment, which have made the press go ga-ga over the show.

Really but where is the connection between these things and fashion?

I told you before there are no connections, it is gimmicks and so far it has paid off really well for these average designers so they prefer to stick to them.

What a sad state the fashion industry has sunk to if gimmicks are given more publicity and designers are featured because of them and not for the creativity of their collections.

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Priti Doshi

Yeh, so true at times.....
garments do not matter and gimmicks do!!


Mini M

This blog is so correct. Fashion and shows are just gimmicks and people are not interested in creating sensible wearable clothes for a wide number of people. They only want publicity and so they resort to weird gimmicks.

Pooja Samant

Hey Meher,
So True....na...! This is the world of `Magic..` ...True Talent hardly comes in front of the world.! Loved it..Keep writing...:)


Mona Shroff

Beautiful topic you selected.I agree that the collection dosen`t matter,only gimmicks and which bollywood celebrity is sitting in the front row matters.Even the organisers of the show will first ask the designer which celebrity is the showstopper for their event , so the timing of their show will be placed accordingly. Sad to see where this Fashion Industry is going.

Wendell Rodricks

The day when the collection is shown on gorillas, apes, chimps and monkey is not far off. And the designer will say the Size issue is being addressed as well as Unity in Diversity. Fashion has become monkey business indeed

Air Cmde T.T.Job

Long live Sir Gimmick

Jasmeen G Dugal

That's very true. Designers who dont have faith in their collections resort to gimmickry to get into the papers or social media! One even had an elephant walk the ramp with the showstopper on it!

Bomy Elavia

Enjoyed reading. Keep them flowing

Kaumudi Naithani

Unfortunately the media plays a huge role in this... No gimmicks then no photo opp or article. Perception trumps talent these days whether we like to admit it or not .... Sad but true

Ruby Vatcha

Thanks for your e-mail. This is like someone dressing up and acting very stylish and in vogue but cannot discuss anything that matters or hold a conversation.
Well, people can be fooled some of the time but not repeatedly. I really don't think this works longtime, people get vary and don't then pay attention to that person's garments.


A VIRTUAL LIFE

MEHER CASTELINO | Nov 01, 2016

Where have you been all these years, haven’t seen you?

I have been leading a virtual life.


A virtual life, what is that? I have heard of a spiritual, corporate, celibate, scientific life but never a virtual life.

A virtual life is one that is in the cyber world.

Oh so you are going into outer space like an astronaut?

No not at all, I have been here in my house living a virtual life, which is through the web.

Please explain some more I am very confused.

I do not go anywhere or meet anyone. My life is in the virtual world.


So how do you live?


I start my day by reading all the news on line. I have my breakfast lunch and dinner by ordering on line and it’s delivered to me. Then I do my work and it is sent to all the clients on line. They also make their payments to me on line. Then I watch movies, plays, concerts and the videos on line.

What about your friends do you meet them?


No, we keep in touch via email, Facebook, Pinterest, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Instagram; it is so fast, easy and very colourful. We send selfies to each other all the time.


That’s a wonderful idea for keeping in touch.


I even met my future wife like that.


Oh where is she haven’t met her yet.


She is on the other side of the globe; we met via a marriage site. We got married online; it was too expensive for either of us to meet each other so we thought this was the best way.

Oh I see but what about your family did they like the idea?

They were thrilled, it worked out so well financially, we all got together on Skype and the marriage took place.

Oh that sounds amazing. Any plans to start a family?

We already have two children.

Really, how did that happen, you haven’t met each other since you married?


It was very easy we adopted two lovely children online and now they are growing up very well.


Who is looking after them?

The charitable association is looking after them but we pay for their well-being. We chat with them nearly every day and they are really doing so well in their school.


So you are happily married with children and you don’t miss seeing them in person?

Not at all, we are in touch every minute of the day so where is the question of missing each other.

I have never heard of this type of family.

Well, let me tell you, we are probably the only family that has never fought, we love each other dearly and we chat with each other every minute of the day. Tell me how many families can do that?

Not even one. It seems the secret of a happy family life is virtual living.

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Mini Mehta

Your new blog is so right. People are so addicted to the virtual world that they don't have time for any physical and human interaction. They talk to each other online even if they are in the same room. Children have stopped playing outdoor games and are stuck on the computer for virtual games and are thrilled by the action which can be at times a bit violent. Even talking on the phone is outdated now.

Ruby

I am still laughing. Imagine adopting children online.... oh dear ! What next. The laziest way of having a family and just paying to have the real work done for you. Wonder what the children grow up like and we cannot blame them if they grow up with wrong values.
In any case even now when friends meet they are all glued to their mobiles round the table. But my school friends talk. We really meet up and the mobile is really on the side and I value that.


Priti Doshi

Ha ha ha!! Good one Meher,
Virtually living it is...


Air Commodore T.T.Job

Unfortunately, this is what the world will come to.Flip side is that there would be no need for transportation and hence cleaner air

Jani

Great article Meher,Could happen in Future,

Tasneem merchant

Hi mam this scenario sounds so true which wd have been totally unrealistic years back and today everyone is in their cocoon ofcourse social cocooning rules the roast as u rightly put in all forms of digital media infact if a family of 4 sits on a dinner table we will hv them chatting on similar whts app groups wt heads in their phones .....its this unrealistic world whr people find solace salute to u fr capturing the zeitgeist

Wendell Rodricks

A virtually stupid life

Kaumudi Naithani

Guilty Meher ... I would say half my life is virtual ( not all of it though). I would be a big fat liar if i didnt admit the convenience of facetime... ha ha

IT’S THE CHAIR

MEHER CASTELINO | Oct 15, 2016

It’s funny how people lose their importance once they leave the chair.

What do you mean by ‘leave the chair’?


See, when politicians are ministers they are surrounded by well-wishers and hangers on.

Yes, that is true.

But once they are thrown out nobody bothers about them.

That’s right; it’s the chair that makes them important.

Even when people drop out of politics and retire they are not important to anyone since they are not sitting on the right chair.

Yes, that is right; an ex-politician is a total ‘has been’.


There have been times when some unpleasant people if they are on the right chair, are eulogised by everyone even if they are the meanest in the world.


That is so sad.

But as soon as they are given the ‘walking ticket’ then people don’t even want to know them.


Yes it’s the chair no matter who sits on it, they are considered important and worthy of adoration.


Look at journalists, their names are tagged with the publication’s name and they think they are great.


Yes, they would not be if they did not have the backing of the publication.


They brag that they have interviewed the best celebs in the world, which no one can do and want front row access.


They don’t know it’s the chair that gives them the push.

Even when it comes to corporations, the head of a company is the ‘god’ but once he is given the pink slip then he is a ‘nobody’.

Yes, it’s the chair that made all the difference in his life.

Even editors who throw their weight around and people bow down to them and pander to their every whim, don’t know it’s the chair that makes the difference in how they are treated.

Yes, I’ve seen that so often.

But once they leave the chair nobody will give them the time of day.


Yes, that is so sad that they are nothing without the chair.


At times it is sad how people look for the chair desperately and the minute they get one they are happy, since once more they are worshipped by all.

Yes, the chair is very useful. Besides giving people a comfortable place to sit, it helps to massage their egos.


The minute the chair is found these poor people get their confidence back along with posts as advisors and celebrity status in the front row.

How sad that they have to hunt for the chair or their life is finished

Even in the fashion world when a designer is at the helm of a big brand, then he/she is a star in whose light everyone wants to bask.

Yes, that happens all the time.

But when the designer has to leave suddenly, then fame comes crashing down because they don’t have the chair.

It is so sad that a piece of furniture makes all the difference in a person’s life.

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GK Kuruvila

Very True in all fields. People will come to ones who no longer hold positions only to gain from their knowledge and experience but no credit will be given. Good one Meher.

Air Commodore T.T.Job

KISSA KURSI KA

Mini Mehta

This is so correct people are so bothered about the chair and then show off to everybody how great they are. People like directors and editors think they rule the world when they are on the chair but many have realised that when they are thrown out they are nobody.

Ruby Vatcha

Thanks for your e-mail. Yes it is true about the Chair. But one does come across people on the way to the Chair who have helped and with whom one has bonded and they stay with you with or without the Chair as they know how genuine one has been and have seen that person work his way to the Chair. And these contacts which turn into friendships are very precious. The others who have been around because of the Chair could drop dead and one does not care when the Chair is no longer there as one has seen through them anyway.

Feroza Dalal

Meher thank you for sharing the article.

Kaumudi Naithani

Nice one Meher .... that is so true. I have personally faced this with many people in different industries including the above mentioned. There is really nothing you can do but learn from this that when you have that position, do not misuse it....

Wendell Rodricks

The biggest chair is the Directors of Fashion Week chair. Some are forgotten when they leave the chair. And some think the chair is stuck to them even after they are thrown out.

Ritu

That is fun and so true.

Neelima Agrawal

"TRUE...the power struck in the Hot Chair are indeed omnipresent. Your blog is always relevant"

THE BRAND’S B.S.S.S.

MEHER CASTELINO | Oct 01, 2016

I am thinking of a new promotion, which is very unique for my very innovative product.

What is the innovative product?


It’s a bullock cart with no bull attached to it.

A bullock cart with no bull attached to it, what do you mean?

Exactly what I said – there is no bull attached to it, since it is an automatic and electronic cart.

Oh I see, so why do you need a unique promotion, the product is so unique already?

It is, but there is a slump in the automobile market. Haven’t you seen the way car companies are giving away their models as prizes at beauty, sports, singing, dancing, and cooking contests and even sponsoring chat and lifestyle TV shows.

Yes, I have seen it, so what have you thought of doing?


I was thinking of a lifestyle-cum-chat show with stars, celebs and get an international brochure to co-sponsor it.


Why would an international brochure co-sponsor your show?

Because nobody is buying this brochure and they are selling just a few hundred copies, so this will be a good way of publicising the brand.


How will you get the stars to come, you will have to pay them big money.


Not at all, the minute you mention the words “international brochure” these stars will come free. They love anything that has to do with “international”.


Okay what is the format of the show?


It will be interviews with the stars along with their uncles, aunts, relatives, teachers, shoe shine boy, newspaper vendor, vegetable seller, convenience store manager, florist, dentist, typist, secretary, pedicurist, manicurist, doctor, laundry man, iron man, masseur, everybody in their lives.


What about their parents, husbands, boyfriends, best friends, won’t you feature them?

No, that is so passé. We will do something totally unusual.

So what will you show?

Well besides the interviews there will be “never before seen” shots of the stars and celebs.

Like what kind of shots?

They will be shown brushing their teeth, washing their face, they will be asked questions like who are their favourite mochi, milkman, newspaper boy, dhobi, paanwala, chanawala and chaiwala.


That is really unusual.


Then we will get them dressed by the worst designers in the fashion business and make them look really silly so that the viewers see a new side of the stars.

That is really different but will that help your product?


Of course, it will. They will swear that they only use my electronic automatic bullock cart wherever they go and that will help my sales to soar.

What about the co-sponsor the international brochure?

They will feature the stars and celebs in their issues, which the stars will be happy to do and hopefully their circulation will go up.

By the way you have not revealed the title of the show?

It will be really catchy.

What will it be?

It will be called THE BRAND’S B.S.S.S.

What does that mean?

It means THE BRAND’S BEST SILLY STAR STORIES!

With a name like that you have a sure-fire hit on your hands!

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Kaumudi Naithani

Ha ha ha ha ... Amazing Meher .... I work in this industry so freedom of speech comes at a cost. Just saw a recent show which is a narcisistic representation of celebrity 'never seen before" interviews / conversations with blatant product placement {slow clap}. If i did not know better ... I would say that is your 'inspiration'.

Air Commodore T.T.Job

Thank God that BSSS has nothing to do with BULLSHIT

Jasmeen G Dugal

It's so so true! Mention'International' brand or 'overseas' junket and all the celebrities are prepped to endorse anything!!

Mini Mehta

This blog is so true. All these TV programmes and brands just want publicity by hook or by crook and the content is so silly. Channels think that by bringing Bollywood stars their TRPs will go up and foreign magazines that are not selling want to sponsor programmes, fashion shows and weeks so that people will hear about them and buy them. But we would prefer to buy the original foreign issue and not the pseudo Indian ones.

Ruby

Feels like the country has run out of talent to have such rubbish and a foolish audience if it falls for it !
Using stars in everything seems to sell. It is high time we highlight what our soldiers are going through and respect them !

Shailini Sheth Amin

like your typical style… :)

LAXITY IN LUXURY

MEHER CASTELINO | Sep 15, 2016

I have finally found the fashion niche I want to be in.

Which one is it?


It is luxury. Everyone is in it now, so I’m going to jump onto the band wagon and make the most of this new trend.

Oh that is so good but what will you do?

First, I will take a crash course in luxury and what it is all about.

Where will you learn about luxury?

There are special schools and institutes that teach you what luxury is and there are courses lasting four years with a degree in the end, which will make me an expert on the subject and profession.

That’s good then what?


Then I will go into the marketing of luxury and get some foreign luxury brands into the country.


Okay this sounds good too. After that what is the next step?

Then I will attend luxury seminars and conferences all over the world.


That is so good after that you will be an expert on the subject so what is your next move?


After that I will organise luxury conferences all over the world.


But I thought you were going into the luxury business.


Yes, I am in the business of luxury, which is very paying financially these days.


How is that?

When one organises luxury conferences everywhere, one has to get lots of heavy weight luxury goods’ sponsors and you are made.

I don’t understand what do you mean by this?

See the conferences will have delegates from abroad and the locals will get a chance to meet and see foreign celebs that are in the luxury business.

Okay so you will invite luxury brand heads, right?

No we will invite celebs from the movie, fashion and music business in the West.


Why but won’t that be very expensive?


Not at all these celebs love to come for a paid holiday to our country and relax.

So are these luxury seminars just junkets for all?


Yes sort of it’s a luxury to get a free junket isn’t it?

Yes I suppose that is right? But what about the audience how do you select them?

Well the audience has to register for the luxury conferences and pay a six figure amount to attend for a day.

That is a lot of money isn’t it?

Yes, but that includes all meals and a chance to look at international celebs and movie stars at close range, which would never be possible in normal life.

Yes I suppose that is right. But what about the luxury part of the conference.

Oh the conference will take care of itself.

Well this looks like some real laxity in luxury where you are only bothered about creating a lot of luxury for yourself and not concerned about the real business of luxury.

What do you mean I am not bothered about the business of luxury? This whole exercise is business for me and I will ensure that luxury flows to me from every corner of the world.

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Kaumudi Naithani

Lovely post again.
People often confuse luxury with designer and equate them both with with expensive. This is quite laughable and what is more incredible that people can consider Luxury a life goal!!!!!!!


Mini Mehta

This is a great subject. People in the name of luxury are making money by holding seminars lectures and then pretending they are experts on the subjects. It is just a money making racket.

Ruby Vatcha

Thanks for your e-mail. I am totally confused with this person ! How do people make so much money is beyond me specially like this ! The world is turning topsy turvy and crazy !

Air Cmde T.T.Job

It should be held on a casino ship. Any way, people go on it to burn money. A bit of luxury fashion will be an added attraction

Anna

As always very interesting Insight on the pitiful state of affairs... its no longer a world of "what you see is what you get"... quality compromised, and to think one of the prime drivers of luxury is Quality...
What a farce!!!
Sad indeed!


Thanks Meher for the plain speak!
Your blogs say it as it is!
Well done yet again.
Love,


Feroza Dalal

The Luxury article is super

Neelima Agrawal

You have divine insight into the sundry shenanigans being masqueraded as gilt edged... So accurate.

anandGUPTA

Lets restart the fashion journey from the times of VEDAS & UPINISHADS and ensure GOD’s become part of this industry including media hype.

Wendell Rodricks

Luxury can also be full of fakes. Products and people

Jasmeen G Dugal

Hmm I wish people realised that luxury in India is 'handmade' 'handwoven' intricate craftsmanship which we are renowned for centuries instead of confusing it with paparazzi-driven glamour and film stars :-)

BACKSTAGE GENIUSES

MEHER CASTELINO | Sep 01, 2016

You must be very relaxed now that fashion weeks are over.

Oh yes, but I never have to worry during fashion weeks. Whether I am opening them or closing them, as I do so many in a month and everything is taken care of.


You are so cool and lucky. How do you manage it?

It’s so simple; I don’t design any of my collections.

What, then who designs them since they are so good?

All my assistants, I make sure I pick the best prize winning talents from fashion institutes and let them design my numerous collections.

That is so fantastic, but everybody thinks you are the designer!

Yes, because it is my name that is on the collection.


But isn’t it a little unfair that your assistants do all the hard work and you get the accolades.


Well not always, there have been times when I have got brickbats too because of their substandard designs since it’s my name on the collection.

So why do you take such risks? Wouldn’t it be better if you designed the collections yourself?


I would, but I can’t design collections fast. I take at least one year to create ten garments. My creativity is very limited and slow.


My goodness that is really very slow and you are such a big name in the business.


Yes, I know that is why I have an army of assistants who churn out collections every week and I can take part in even three fashion weeks in a month in different parts of the country.


This is incredible but how do the assistants feel?


They feel great. They see their creations on the ramp at the top shows.

I see, but don’t they want to design under their own label?

They don’t have the guts to put their names on the clothes but have the talent, which I use, to further my name.

That is really very unfair don’t you think?

Not at all, everything is fair in love, war and fashion.

I am surprised at your remark!


You don’t understand. Small time unqualified people are turning into designers overnight by ripping-off top designers’ collections from the net or fashion shows and selling them cheap, so what is wrong if I hire designers for my label?


Yes I have heard of that.

I am getting talented designers to create for me; while I put my name on their work even if it may not be too good.


I suppose you are right, this fashion business is so messy these days. One never knows who the real designer is and the poor public is fooled by the media who rave about designers’ collections at fashion week.

That’s right, but I pay my assistants quite well so they are happy designing for me since I am a big name in the fashion industry.

I guess you are right. If they don’t have the guts to take the bouquets with the brickbats, it is better to be backstage geniuses and hide behind someone else’s label.

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Mini Mehta

After reading your blog I am shocked to know that designers are not creating their collections but depending on their assistants. No wonder at times the garments look disjointed since so many different people are doing the designing. So people are paying high prices for an assistant's work which should be much cheaper. Where is the fashion business going?

Ela Dedhia

This has started many years back. Now its grown too much. Hope such designers accept that it is unethical and nothing but plagiarism. Designers can sell products designed by others and can give credits to their design assistants as well.
They will be better respected for that.
It reflects a bad name to the design fraternity where not all work on same lines. Many of them struggle towards originality and creativity and create the best. Meher thanks for your guts in bringing this story out so openly.


Ruby Vatcha

Really, everything goes these days. Even school projects are outsourced! I was so shocked when I heard that one could do a project for a student and get paid for it. If we have such doctors or engineers we've had it !

Priti Doshi

Too good and so very true too!!

Jasmeen G Dugal

I completely agree but it's a TWO-EDGED SWORD in most cases. These young designers are not being exploited. They are learning hands-on from the best in the industry... networking with the best in the industry too... and this helps them establish their label when the time is right.

Pooja Samant

What a reality...Your blog are reality check...!
Thoroughly enjoyed it...


Jerome Marrel

Very true.

Sunaina Suneja

hehe.
isnt this true worldwide?


Air Commodore T.T.Job

"She is following the time tested business model of successful companies, There is nothing wrong with that especially since she is paying her employees well".

Ranjit R.

Nice blog post Meher
So many of the "senior" designers are guilty of this practice, I'm told...


Kaumudi Naithani

another lovely post Meher.... some of these assistant designers manage to learn and move on and start their on labels however i am guessing many dont.

ANAND GUPTA

Michelangelo died a natural death. It’s the era of public relations, media relations, celebrity links and networking.
So it really does not matter who designs.


FASHION BARTER

MEHER CASTELINO | Aug 15, 2016

Why are you looking so sad? You had a great debut show at the last fashion week with good responses.

Yes, I had a very successful first show and am happy. Buyers too were very encouraging.


Then what’s the matter? You should be celebrating.


I would but now I have a big problem.

What problem do you have after such success?

I don’t have money for publicity, while my contemporaries are splashed all over the print and on-line media.

What do you mean?

If I want to participate in a fashion feature I have to give an advertisement in the magazine or they won’t use my clothes.

Oh is that how it is now?


If I want to put a photograph in a publication I have to pay for an advertorial.


That is really bad. Why don’t you get some celebs to wear your creations like other designers and brands are doing?

I tried that but the celebs want to be paid to wear my clothes and mention my name and they also want to keep my clothes. Besides you have to get the top celeb or your creations will be trolled by the fashion police.


That is really tragic. But how about making friends with top models and getting them to wear your clothes to social events? That will help you.


Yes, but the models also want to get paid and again many of them want to keep the clothes.


Don’t you know any fashion editors of magazines who could promote your clothes?


No, but I have heard that they want clothes for their wardrobes and special events and sometimes charge for featuring collections.


Oh dear, this is getting really out of hand. What about bloggers and social media.

I tried this avenue too but it is even more expensive than the print media.

How is that?

The bloggers want to be paid to write a few words and they also want to keep the clothes they feature.

What about the social media avenue?

Well they have different contracts that range from days, weeks, months, to years, which costs a lot of money.


How about using your own Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Pinterest to publicise your creations?


Well I have all these avenues but not many followers, I am a little shy.

That’s sad fashion today seems to have turned into a barter system of give and take, there is nothing like publishing news because it is interesting.


Yes, you are so right. Today if you can pay you are in the news otherwise you are left in the dark.

The barter system worked centuries ago and seems to be back everywhere. So now you have to choose - either be socially well connected or be ready to give and take.

Now you know why I am so sad, if I want publicity I will not only be broke but also have no clothes to sell since I have to give them away free!

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Annette Leong

You must really love the fashion world Meher,and you do excel in that dept .We can be very sloppy where our attires are concerned,more comfortable than fashion,esp.in America,majorities are fat and Canada is right behind them,we eat too much and everything has super size I fast food and we fall for it.
I didn't realize India has such great potential in the fashion.wow,they are trendy and can afford a lot more than one can imagine


Mini Mehta

Very interesting reading your blog this time. Fashion also seems to be following the give and take policy it is sad since some designers are talented but can't afford to spend on publicity.

Sreejith Jeevan

Haha...Good one!

Jasmeen G Dugal

Yes Meher fashion is sadly a barter system and involves money. "Bloggers" or "Insta-Bloggers" who buy followers who may not even know what Fashion is... charge astronomical amounts for ONE POST. I have seen the editor of a bollywood-fashion-lifestyle-travel-anythingthatpays portal gracing the front row in an outfit from the same collection as is being showcased. Many "senior" print editors visit designers' stalls to "help promote them" by wearing their garments and of course there is no question of returning it. This is why I have a rule of never agreeing to such "barters", feature all collections on social media and write on my website about whose collection I liked or have some point of view about. Yes advertising and business is the core of the website but not in reviews and editorials.

Neelima Agrawal

"You really have touched a raw nerve on the plight of the young up-coming designers. But there yet are some publications that report true talent without monetary benefits....such as The Luxury Chronicle. ☺"

Ruby Vatcha

Thanks for your e-mail. I am still laughing. It is the same with everything isn't it. Even we could not get a press release printed without advertising. But giving away clothes is a bit too much. The poor designer has to not only create designs but pay for the material etc. It is really extremely sad that everyone just is about their own selves. And true that those who do the good work are often not known at all also in charity or honorary work.

Air Cmde T.T.Job

There is no free lunch in any profession.

Anand Gupta

Pls post as I get error
Such facts of the actual fashion and media world should become part of
fashion education so passing graduates are aware the world they would step into.


Wendell Rodricks

Why want publicity in the first place? Focus on the clothes and keeping racks full year round. That is more important than publicity with empty racks and no cash to show.

Kaumudi Naithani

The fashion business is a cut-throat industry where these issues never seem to stop. But I truly believe that if you are an exceptional designer, everything else will follow. It may take more time, but it will follow. You will meet some people who will try to take advantage, but noteveryone is that bad...... I hope..

OLD ISN’T GOLD

MEHER CASTELINO | Aug 01, 2016

I really don’t know what is happening to the fashion industry?

Why what is wrong?


Do you know that pioneers in the fashion business are unceremoniously dumped by many fashion persons?


Please explain I don’t understand.

A well-respected crafts revival expert was given a hard time by an old well-known fashion outlet even though she was their bestselling brand for many years.

Why was this done?

Apparently, the young foreign-trained scion of the fashion outlet’s owner wanted to change the profile of the place and bring in young hep designers.

But crafts and textiles are so respected in the country and are given impetus by the authorities.

Well that maybe all good on paper but the people who say they support the movement, only do so to be featured in the media.


That is so false.


Another top designer who has been in business for years was prevented from displaying her collection at a fashion soirée.

Why what happened?


The excuse was young blood had to be promoted.


This is ridiculous; experience in fashion makes all the difference in clothes.


There is this Young Turk who had taken over a big business house from the father and now the company is ready to close down.


That is really sad. Years of the father’s hard work was ruined in one shot.


I hear that cocky young merchandisers of fashion houses are giving experienced designers a tough time and pushing their designer friends in the limelight.

But won’t this affect the business of the fashion house since it’s the mature customer that has the buying power not the teeny boppers.

Well the fashion house has now lost its glitz and glamour thanks to substandard designs.

What a pity.

There was this fashion store that rejected well-known names in the fashion business and opted for only emerging designers.

So what happened?


Well the new designers were so unreliable that there were empty racks due to bad quality and no stocks.


Oh no that is bad.

A top brand brought in a funky designer into its fold to revamp the look.


Was it a success?

They gave up the idea after a few months since the brand’s image was totally lost and loyal customers disappeared.

I hear in the rest of the world the fashion business is aimed at mature buyers and even models.

Yes I know one of the top male models is over 60 years in the West.

Also fashion designers are creating collections for the evergreen customers who are very stylish.

That is so sensible. The mature customers have class, style and money.

Yes, you are so right. But now it seems “Old isn’t gold” for some brands and stores. They don’t seem to realise that the creations of pioneering fashion experts are everlasting and timeless; while the fly-by-night flighty creators may not be around for more than a few seasons.

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Anuj Sharma

great topic meher. the idea of old vs new is very debatable. and it has both advantages and disadvantages of its own

Kaumudi Naithani

Very well written Meher and somewhere i think you genuinely touched a raw nerve regarding the ugly truth of the industry ....

Mini Mehta

I like your topic this time and it shows how fickle the fashion industry is. Nothing lasts for more than a season even designers are the flavour of the month depending on the whims of the stores and buyers. But Class always lasts no matter what people do or think.

Jasmeen G Dugal

It's true Meher. "They don’t seem to realise that the creations of pioneering fashion experts are everlasting and timeless; while the fly-by-night flighty creators may not be around for more than a few seasons."

Neelima Agrawal

"True Meher, This is the age of mediocrity, driven by 'likes' and 'followers'. Wish you would reveal some of the names in there though. Fab blog.'

Wendell Rodricks

It is not a problem of old gold. It is consignment for stores with newbies and those designers who make PR noises to get clients via Page 3. Both are disastrous models for business Old is Gold and more

Air Commodore T.T.Job

Effect of SON rise.

CELEBRITIY TERROR

MEHER CASTELINO | July 15, 2016

I am shocked at the happenings in the fashion business these days.

Why what is happening?


I have heard that a well-known Page 3 person is harassing a young designer to create free clothes for events.


Oh that is sad but the designer should refuse.

She is scared to do it since this Page 3 regular is popular on social media and will malign her.

That is ridiculous; the young designer should not worry about such things.

There is this self-styled celeb who is demanding clothes from a top designer for Red Carpet entries saying the designer will be publicised.

Yes I’ve heard about that often.

The designer only offered to give the outfits for one evening but the celeb wanted the garments as gifts!


Oh dear then what happened?


The celeb started bad-mouthing the designer’s creativity and skills.

That is really bad.


Then there is this so called multi-talented celebrity who claims to be a master of all subjects. The demand was that designers must finance the wardrobes and do alterations as and when required for the celebrity.


How crazy is that? Nobody should listen or give in to such demands.


But these poor designers are scared since this celebrity has a lot of pull in social circles.


Well the best thing to do is to ignore such people and not befriend them.


There is a celeb that claims to be a fashion designer but has not stitched a seam or done any creative work to show it.

So who says the celeb is a fashion designer.

The poor gullible media who don’t know their ‘fashion’ from ‘fusion’ are praising the person whose collections are lifts from fashion stores or magazines.

That is very sad indeed.

There is this high society person connected with the richest families in the country who claims to be a fashion expert but just wears the creations of top designers and labels and at times passes them off as her own.

Really now you are going too far.


You don’t know the demands of some top front row celebs. They want to be dressed in the clothes of the designers’ shows on the ramp or they will not attend.


Oh this is getting from bad to worse!.

Their demands are so bad that at times the poor petrified designers cannot show their collections as they don’t have a front row celebrity line up and the media doesn’t cover their event.


This is the most outlandish thing I have ever heard. The media is to blame for this mess at times.

There have been times when designers have been forced to give expensive clothes to celebrities and never got them back because the celebrities have a lot of clout in the media and society.

Oh dear what is happening to the fashion business in the country? There is terrorism all around the world but it seems now fashion is the perfect place for “celebrity terror” where it is used to get what one wants.

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Wendell Rodricks

It is not the fault of the celebrities. Designers who give clothes for publicity deserve the terrorism they receive.

Jasmeen G Dugal

We have seen it happening Meher at every fashion week -- big or small -- in any city !! And yes now that fashion bridal and couture season has begun we will see it again. But it works both ways. Designers are not petrified any more. They use publicity and gift- hungry socialites for media milage and the socialtes get coverage and clothes!


Adriane anna Bredemeyer

Very insightful....
It's a dismal situation to say the very least.. its also disturbing to note that people who's claim to fame is doing virtually nothing are throwing their weight around in this manner...
What a sad state of affairs! It's time things n priorities are brought back on track... one can only hope this happens sooner rather than later...


Neelima Agrawal

'You reveal the seamier side of celebrity endorsements. Great blog'.

Jasmine Shahabadi

Hi Meher,
I love reading these posts. It keeps my interest in fashion alive considering I am in the world of tea now!!...
Lots of love


Kaumudi Naithani

This is actually very common in the industry across actors, actresses, Page 3 socialites & believe it or not even bloggers too. Luckily for me i decide what looks good or not and critique designers based on my tatstes which at best defines my buying decisions.

Mahima Sayani

Hi Meher
Hope you are doing well.
I get your articles; must say it is a pleasure to read.


Mini Mehta

I really like your blog this time. I have heard that a lot of Page 3 women want freebies all the time and harass designers for them. They behave as if they are doing the designers a favour by wearing their creations and most of them behave as if they are rich but have never paid for anything in their lives but are free loaders everywhere.

Tasneem Merchant

Respected Mam
Your blog hits the nail bang on celebrities socialites page 3 are wooed by media to create a larger than life persona designers from all disciples be it jewellery interiors fashion are being convinced to give out freebies as a barter for publicity in their social circles and media as for designers 1) does trickle down theory apply masses emulating page 3 celebrities 2) publicity if any???? Result in sales after all we are in the business of fashion all in all your blog addresses the designers woes perfectly

Air Commodore T.T.Job

Sofisticated Hafta

Ruby

I am really shocked that this is happening. The designers should write to the media to check this out. This is like actors going to restaurants and expecting complimentary meals and finally the restaurants shutting down. Really shocking. Ethics really seems to have fallen off planet earth.

 

POSTS IMPERFECT

MEHER CASTELINO | July 01, 2016


I am really worried about the future of fashion in the country.

Why what’s happened?

You know the future of fashion in any country starts from the grassroots, that is the fashion institutes.


Yes that’s right.


But things are going wrong at the grassroots level.

How is that possible?

Haven’t you heard, the head of the biggest fashion institute is a former waterworks department director who has never seen a fashion show or knows the placket from the pocket!

Oh really, maybe they want a great fluid, flowing, style in fashion to be taught to the students.

Stop being funny; even the heads of fashion weeks in the country these days are either bored rich housewives or sponsors with deep pockets.

That’s great at least there are people interested in promoting fashion in the country.


If they were genuinely promoting fashion for the love of it then I would be happy, but it’s all a money making business and nothing to do with encouraging designers, crafts and textiles of the country.


That is really sad.

Do you know the head of one of the top fashion brands is a former armed officer?


Maybe it will bring some discipline into the brand since it is so disorganised.


Then there is a rumour that one of the top fashion houses may hire as its creative head the leader of a political party.


That will add to the party’s style quotient I am sure and give the fashion house a lot of clout.


The fashion industry is attracting the most unusual people from professions that have nothing to do with style.


Now what has happened?

The latest entrants on the fashion scene are a pair from the medical fraternity - a heart surgeon and a dentist. They are planning their collections for the next season.

I don’t see anything wrong if they have a creative streak. The heart surgeon’s collection will be straight from the heart, while the dentist’s clothes will have a lot of bite in them.

A millionaire’s bored daughter has turned into a designer, stylist and fashion brand because of the financial backing.

That’s great she has finally found her calling.

One of the top fashion magazines in the country has an editor whose knowledge of fashion is questionable.


Well everyone has their individual look that can make a fashion statement.


You are again making a joke about the fashion scenario. All these posts are totally imperfect.

Why are you complaining about posts imperfect in the fashion business? There are several moments in history when artists have turned into manic dictators and housewives into world leaders.


Yes, but the business of fashion is artistic, glamorous and elegant so needs people with the right knowledge and expertise.


Fashion in the country has been glamorous, elegant and stylish for too long, maybe we need people who have no knowledge to lead the way and start a fashion revolution of a different kind with posts that are imperfect.


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Love,anna x

Rightly said Meher! Full marks :)))

Feroza Dalal

Thank you for the lovely article, it gives a lot of insight in the way the fashion industry works.


Wendell Rodricks

Welcome to the Clueless Indian Fashion Industry

Anna

Always l‎ove what you write... you hit the nail on the head time n again... x

Air Cmde T.T.Job

What the present Govt. is trying to do is to put in their dummies and dumbos wherever possible.
Shortly, there will be a directive that that the only color permitted on the ramp is saffron.


Mini M

Your blog this time is just 'PERFECT.' What is happening to the fashion industry is very sad and things seem to be getting worse with hundreds of fashion weeks and fashion institutes created to only make money and not do anything for the business of fashion. The Fashion industry employs lakhs of people but nobody is bothered about them or the right way to move ahead.

Meher Caste

Thank you for the lovely article, it gives a lot of insight in the way the fashion industry works.

Priti Doshi

Ha ha ha good one

So much about Nift but you missed cricketers being head!!


Ruby

I guess anything goes anywhere, no-one seems to follow rules about anything anymore. Worse than this is the Professors in Bihar teaching when they themselves don't know anything ! It is indeed a shame and money seems to buy everything....

Kaumudi Naithani

Lovely one. Ha ha 'Kahan gaye achhe din?'

Anand GUPTA

Lets celebrate fashion has come of age to attract politics and politicians.

FASHION BHELPURI

MEHER CASTELINO | June 15, 2016

I can’t understand how and why designers want to show their collections and try to be seen 24 x 7!

What do you mean by that?


I have noticed there are some designers who open and close fashion weeks nearly every week of the year.


Really that must be really hectic for them.

There are some designers if they can’t do that, ensure they take part in every fashion week in the country whether it is important or not.

Wow that is amazing.

Then some designers like to be associated with every charity, launch and opening of events nearly every day.

That must be so tiring.

Then they are also available for birthdays, weddings, anniversaries of the rich and famous and showcase their collections at homes where they hope people with deep pockets will attend.


Now you are really exaggerating.


No I’m not. I’ve heard that some designers check the papers every day for celebs and launches so they can show their collections at different places and gain mileage for themselves.

But isn’t this too much of exposure and publicity and can make the designer label stale?


Some designers I have heard even put up shows at malls, street corners and bazaars to stay in the news.


Now I think you are going too far.


I am not and I feel some designers don’t think so. It’s free publicity and maybe their sales go up or it is just an exercise of ego massaging that they need daily.


But isn’t it good to be seen once in a while so that people long for your shows instead of being bored with them.


Well for some designers fashion is like bread and butter seen at every meal.

Yes, but even the bread and butter ready-to-wear labels in the business of fashion create new collections and show them at fixed intervals.

True, but some fashion designers feel they need to be in the public eye 24 x 7 or they get worried.

Why are they so doubtful and insecure about their talents?

No, they may think they are high fashion designers who need to be seen by the rich and famous all the time.

Well shouldn’t high fashion be like caviar very rare and beautiful and only seen for short intervals.


Yes you are right. But some designers are turning fashion into bhel puri seen at every street corner.


But at times there is a slight difference in the bhel puri.

There maybe but the basic ingredients are the same just like these designers’ collections, which are mixed and changed but with the same old styles.


What a pity, street food is a mish-mash but cheap and tasty but paying the earth for recycled expensive haute couture has turned fashion into bhel puri by designers who want to show their collections at every street corner.

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Wendell Rodricks

Bhelpuri is Mumbai chaat. Name and shame them. I can think of a dozen fashion names that fit this Bhelpuri, Ragda Pattis, Chutney Toast Sandwich and Batata Wada

Kaumudi Naithani

Even if you are a good designer, I feel that a little publicity is warranted for people to get to know you and your designs. Building your credibility needs to be strategic but if it is volume of sales you are after then it's a whole different ballgame i guess. Some designers seem to be everywhere but not in the places it counts. The whole publicity game is so difficult to balance today.


Air Cmde T.T.Job

What designers are aiming at is maximum exposure (pun intended)

Mini Mehta

I loved this blog of yours and the comparison you have made. Yes some designers have reduced designer fashion to a common happening which is seen nearly everyday at every street corner. There is no difference between high fashion and the rejects one gets on the road. The same old lehenga choli dupattas with the all over embroidery which is more a tribute to the craftsmen and not the designer. Mini M

Mahima Sayani

Hi Meher
Hope you are doing well.
The article is so true could totally relate to it.

Also it is always a pleasure to read your thoughts.


Jasmeen G Dugal

Sadly yes. A designer should showcase once at fashion week and retail through exhibit perhaps but in India 95 per cent of them take the same collection to every city.. every fashion week.. nightclub events.. everywhere! They get celebrities to wear it and "Insta" and place it it in films and go to town tweeting about it. For the discerning buyer or editor .... it is overdose. We dont know we'll see a genuine collection to review or rehash of the same the entire year!

Neelima Agrawal

"True Meher, classic symptoms of the Starlet Syndrome, sometimes also found in politicians - 'to be in the news at all cost'. Who's buying?? Great post"

Ruby Vatcha

This is like some people who want to attend everything to be seen everywhere and think it makes them look important but it actually has the reverse effect.

If these fashion designers are only concentrating on being seen they are losing that much creativity time ! Also they are not fooling anyone.


Anand Gupta

Tornado of new players entering the field not only trained designers but also housewife does give jitters and insecurity. A designer outfit is now available from Rs 500/- onwards… so pity the designers with establishment costs spending sleepless nights to survive… end of the day if not money atleast visibility is the focus even if one it comes from Shri Ganesh Mandaps in bylanes…

PSEUDO BODYGUARDS

MEHER CASTELINO | June 01, 2016  


Do you know what irritates me these days are bodyguards of celebrities who behave worse than the celebrities they are supposed to look after?


What do you mean?

These so called ‘bodyguards’ have nothing to do with physical security of the celebs.


I thought the word ‘Bodyguards’ means strong people who protect the celebrities from physical harm like the ones the presidents, politicians and prime ministers have.


No, these are pseudo bodyguards are not strong physically but throw their weight around in other ways.

This makes no sense.

This big designer’s relative is like a bodyguard. She checks every client who comes to the designer and is even rude to the richest ones from abroad all because she does not like their looks and they were not sweet to her and did not bow down to her.

This is ridiculous the poor designer must be losing good customers because of her.

Then there is the mother of a star who stands next to her rising debutant daughter and ensures that all questions and answers go through her. The daughter cannot open her mouth without the mother’s permission.

Poor girl when will she find her voice in life – probably when she is a ‘has been’.


There is this top model-cum-star-cum-item-girl-cum-designer-cum-actor whose bodyguard is so rude that no journalist wants to interview her.


The worst thing that a celebrity can have is a bad PR person.

Of course, besides not getting near these celebs these so called pseudo bodyguards are the ones that make sure what the celebs wear, eat, drink, visit, talk, walk, endorse, write or even when to smile or cry. Their image is completely controlled by them.


This is worse than being in a prison where you have to do whatever the authorities say and you cannot comment on it.


These days the celebrities are so dumb they prefer to have someone else do all the work for them. They are worse than museum pieces with no intelligence and brains of their own to even open their mouths to talk.


I am totally surprised by all this.


This is a really sad state of affairs in the glamour world. Everyone has a pseudo bodyguard who tells them what is best for them.


So what happens in the end - is this method successful?

Well at times these pseudo bodyguards are the result of many a celebrity’s downfall even if they are their relatives.

Has such a thing happened?

Yes, the relative of the designer who was bossy has made the designer most unpopular and now the poor designer handles his own PR and ‘bodyguards’ himself as there were many complaints.

Oh that’s nice.

The star’s mother has been told to shut up and the star has a good PR company that handles her image.


That is so good finally sense has dawned on these celebs that it is better to have the ‘really thing’ instead of pseudo people around them.


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Priti Doshi

Cant guess who's this????????????????????

Feroza Dalal

It was a good read and humorous. enjoyed.


Mini Mehta

This was an unusual subject for the blog but really enjoyed reading it. Yes there are bodyguards who think they are bigger than the celebs they are supposed to guard and don't know when to stop and when to guard. There are top celebs who move around without bodyguards and miggle with the people. They don't behave like great human beings who are above all.

Air Cmde T.T.Job

i hope politicians hire these people. At least it will put a stop to motormouths

Neelima Agrawal

I am really intrigued by these 'bodyguards' /'baby sitters'.What's their brief? I mean, really what are they supposed to do ? Very interesting Meher.

Wendell Rodricks

Spot on. I had to pay a room service bill for a celeb friend who was walking my ramp. While she had only green tea and water, the bodyguard ordered lobster biryani

Ranjit R.

I totally agree with you Meher. The PR managers and the bouncers around the stars behave starrier than the stars.

Jasmeen G Dugal

Very true.

Kaumudi Naithani

I have heard (though never personally experienced) that you need to pay these 'bodyguards' in order to gain access or of course leverage favors. I can think of quite a few actors that fit the profile but they are so inconsequential that nobody would care. And by the way ... some could actually do with a bodyguard to shield their them - control the attitude!

PUBLICITY HUNGRY

MEHER CASTELINO | May 15, 2016  


I am really worried about the human race since the social media revolution has taken place.

Why what has happened?


Everybody right from toddlers to octogenarians have gone crazy and become publicity hungry.


Why do you say that?


Haven’t you noticed how new social media sites are erupting all over.

Yes I have, but so what is wrong with that?

Every Tom, Dick and Harry as well as Vijay, Raj and Rohit has started social media sites, which are turning everyone into narcissists.

Why do you say that, these sites help to keep people in touch?

If that was the case I wouldn’t worry.


Then what is worrying you?


These sites are turning people into addicts.

Is that so, how?


My daughter and son are constantly putting their selfies on the sites every minute of the day.


They are young it will pass.


My parents want their photos uploaded daily about what they are doing.


That’s nice they are so modern.


My grandparents want to see themselves on-line too, which is crazy.

That is really sweet.

But my great grandmother wants a selfie every time she removes her false dentures.

Well she is moving with the times, so be happy.

What is worrying me is that these sites at times are encouraging aggression and adventure.

What do you mean by that?


They are giving birth to trolls, where people criticise everybody and everything, while hiding behind fake identities.


I suppose it’s a great way of releasing pent up emotions for the younger generation.

If you say so, but some of these sites are even encouraging crazy dangerous selfies; which are literally killing people.

Well if the people are silly enough to pose on the edge of a precipice you can’t blame the sites.

I think there should be some monitoring of such images so that people don’t go to extremes.

The sites are not going to do this. It is up to the parents to educate their children.

Also have you seen when people don’t have anything else to upload on social media they show their kids, pets, parents, dig up ancient images - anything to take up space on sites and make a noise about themselves! Very rarely does one come across something intelligent on social media.

Yes so true.

It’s all about “I, me, my, mine” that one has to read about.

Yes absolutely.

It’s always, “My latest selfies,” It’s self-promotion of the ultimate and boring kind.

Yes true. Earlier it was hunger for money now it is for publicity.

I just think the world has become so publicity hungry that everybody from politicians to movie stars, celebrities, families whether rich or poor, just want to see their faces in print or on-line, come what may.

That is the way of the New Age World. Everybody wants to be in the limelight and as one celebrity stated, “If people are not in the limelight, then they might as well be dead.”

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Mini Mehta

You are very right. Social media is a curse now and instead of helping is harming. People must use it carefully and within limits

Wendell Rodricks

This is the truth...If it is not in social media, it just did not happen


Jasmeen G Dugal

It's very true. EVERYONE wants to be on social media and update the same "happening" picture on ALL social media sites be it snapchat or twitter or insta or facebook :O they even pose against someone else's BMW and make it their cover shot! And spy or stalk people! Unfortunately a lot of crimes are taking place too based on too much information on social media which the robbers rapists and the like use to their advantage. The only solution is to be prudent and edyucate our kids on the potential danger.

Kaumudi Naithani

Social media has just changed the nature of interactions. I think what gets to me the most is the spellings - gr8 instead of great 4 instead of four etc ... That really pisses me off for some weird reason :-(

Air Commodore T T Job

"Selfies are being uploaded on social media because there are no charges. To put a brake on this trend, govt should levy a cess on each selfie uploaded"

Ruby

Yes everyone seems to have time to do this stupid publicity and it is so true. It is like a one upmanship to have what they do on these sites and sometimes it is so boring and I find selfies really silly if they are put for no reason. I guess it is not a passing phase and here to stay ! A pity and waste of time.

Pooja Samant

It's your one of the Best piece..! Its so true...But unfortunate..Where are we heading no idea...!
Even our PM- Political Leaders cant resist themselves from taking Selfies..!!
Selfie Mania & Social Media..! We all are lost in that..!

Neelima Agrawal

"True, the frenzy has intensified many fold, and everyone has turned into a travelogue expert, gourmet cook, artist, designer...Ufff, where would we be without the Phone camera???"

FOREIGN FETISH

MEHER CASTELINO | May 01, 2016  


I can’t understand people and their need to get validation from foreigners and countries.

Why what happened?


Now take designers, they get a thrill if foreign magazines feature them and feel their life is made when actually they sell more collections in their own country.


Maybe they want a foreign stamp for their clothes so they can brag about it.


Well aren’t local journalists and media important since they sell locally?

You are right about that point.

Then there are fashion weeks organisers who literally beg foreign magazine editors to sit in the front row and attend their events.

Well maybe they think that it adds class to their event.

But do you see foreign fashion weeks begging our local magazine editors to sit in the front row even though many foreign brands are rushing to sell their brands here?


Well abroad it is the business of fashion not the business of getting onto Page 3 at fashion weeks.


Then we have celebs and stars who only want to wear foreign brands to show how fashion forward they are even if the clothes look terrible on them.

I suppose they just want to show how “with it” they are as far as fashion is concerned.


Then show organisers want foreign brands on the local ramps to add an international flavour to the shows.


That’s nice.


But the foreign brands that are brought here at times maybe unheard of even in their own countries but to us they are great since they come from the West.


Well you know how there are some people who feel everything foreign is the best.


Even when it comes to models, the foreign ones are picked over the local ones because of their fair skin and that it will give a foreign touch to the shows.

You should by now know how people adore fair and lovely things.

Do you know that the ‘so called’ foreign buyers at fashion weeks don’t buy anything but come for a nice holiday junket courtesy the organisers and go back?

That is really sad.

Even taking part in a foreign fashion week and getting praised by the foreign audience is very important for designers even though most their clothes are sold in their country.

We love getting foreign validation though at times the foreigners are just patronising us and praise from one’s own people is not considered important.


Even when it comes to events like weddings, board meetings, birthday, anniversary parties, people go abroad to celebrate at foreign spots since they think local venues are not good enough.


Yes, and to think that the foreigners come to our country for their events.

Even the way people talk by putting on an accent, which is so fake, since one can’t figure out, which part of the world it is from.



Well what can you do, we took years to move out of foreign rule and now we have a great foreign fetish, which has become an obsession with us.


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Mini Mehta

This blog of yours is just correct. Now it is foreign labels that make an impact in everyone's lives and Indian brands are pushed back. People feel they have made a mark in life if they use foreign things and when foreigners praise them.

Wendell Rodricks

I am foreign. I live in Goa, where half of Indians think we have Portuguese blood


Ruby

Yes, the foreign fettish is there but people are also beginning to see through. The educated ones here are quite smart and well travelled and do not fall into that trap. But it will take time for the nouveau riche and others.

Air Cmde T.T.Job

World is is today a Global Village. Abroad is nothing but the the suburbs of any country. So what is wrong in extending this theory to the Fashion World?


Kaumudi Naithani

In terms of fashion International magazines give it an international platform. Some Indian designers are dressing your International stars and everyone wants to be seen in that space. ( PR professional goes nuts when Indian designer says Lady Gaga & J Lo are wearing our clothes ... make sure it is splashed in every paper ... this is national news!!!) International models just add to the perception.... Sorry but inevitable thinking for many designers...

About the local venues - i just read an article about 10 places in India where Indians are not allowed. Need to be white or have a foreign passport... I remember when the German Bakery in Goa was at its zenith, the managers would seat foreigners even before the Indian parties who had been waiting longer. We live in a hypocritical society / world ... lets just have another shot and laugh at the hypocrites .....


Kaumudi Naithani

thanks Meher .... your blogs are very thought provoking xx 


Jasmeen G Dugal

It's true Meher!! Indian editors and bloggers rush for foreign FAM trips and often I have been criticised for my Indian travelogues (!) citing "why India? Go abroad and write about London and NYC!!!" This when we should showcase our country's heritage! Sad but a majority of Indians have no pride in the rich heritage of our country at a time when it is being recognised globally an excellent example being a alliance I witnessed in Udaipur between Domaine National de Chambord and City Palace Udaipur to preserve living heritage and promote tourism to both Udaipur and France.

Neelima Agrawal

"Surely, everyone seeks validation from beyond one's own little village and kith, and this is true in every country. However the balance is in not falling prey to the colonial mindset."

LAME LAUNCHES

MEHER CASTELINO | April 15, 2016  


You know these days I am quite amused by the various types of movie launches that are taking place.

What movie launches and why are you amused?


Look in the past the most important thing was a movie premiere when the stars appeared in person and thousands of fans gathered to see them. It was a major happening.


Yes I remember those days.


Then it moved to the Muharat shot of the movie when the first scene was filmed, which was an auspicious event.


You are quite right about that.

Then it started with trailer launches, which were big events to garner publicity.

Really that is so silly.

Then it moved to the launch of the music album of songs from the movie, which was interesting.


Yes, the music makes the movie popular in India.


Then it was important to have the first song's launch, which is also not a bad idea if one wants to promote the movie's music and music director.

Of course you are right.


Then it went onto launching the costumes of the movie where the designer and stylist discussed the look of the movie and how it was achieved.


Yes I recollect that too and it was done for some movies.


But now I don't understand the launch of a poster of the movie?


That is really a lame launch.


What can one do I suppose these days it's a question of pushing for publicity before the movie is released.

Why is that important? I find it quite silly launching a poster.

You don't understand it's important to get as much publicity before the movie is released.

Why is that?

The reason is quite simple.

What is the reason now for these silly launches?


You don't understand what if the movies flop then no one will see or write about them, like it happened recently for many big ticket movies.


I see, I didn't think about that.

So it is little wonder that producers are having events for the launch of a new hairstyle and makeup for the heroine, which she will wear.


That's it, now I understand.

I recently heard there was a launch for the number of retakes the hero and heroine gave for a movie.


Wow that is really great.

Also there was a launch for the number of bottles of glycerine the hero used.

Really, it must have been a very tragic film.

No it was a comedy where the hero cried while trying to make the audience laugh.

Really that is so crazy!

It is and there is going to be a launch for the number of times the heroine came late, which delayed the movie by 10 years that was a record worth celebrating.

Goodness, will there be any limit to theses launches.

No never what is life without a fancy launch where ministers and stars can rub shoulders and see their photos in a small corner of the morning paper?


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Mini Mehta


This is a very different subject you have touched this time but is really true. There is a launch for everything and everywhere. People just want to do this so that they can be in the news all the time for no reason at all.



Anand Gupta


I guess all volatile industry be it movie or fashion need to find a way to be in limelight as a cheaper cost of compromise on substance. Lot has changed in last 15/20 years. Present era even a grocery store owner tries his hand at movie making and his daughter a fashion COUTURE designer post just 1 year of some institute diploma.



Air Commodore T T Job


Mr Johnson, our senior master used to say " Blow your own trumpet as no one else will blow it for you"So be it with movie launches.

 

 

Pallav Ojha


Your Article make a lot of sense...Meher !
However...We shall still commit to work on Fashion Weeks that provide a global platform & Business opportunity to the deserving talent... !



Anna


I have followed your blog several times in the past as well and have always found it to be humorously insightful! :)) Great going Meher..
I love the fact that you frankly say it as it is!
Write on!



Kaumudi Naithani


Very well written Meher ... Loved it .... An observation - Launch gimmicks are pretty much driven by what the public wants .... :-)

 

Sabina


Congratulations Meher!

 

 

Wendell Rodricks


Let me now spill the beans. Those posters are shot at high budgets with the top photographers (most are my friends) and they do these superb shots that even the film cannot do justice. Don't think they are stills from the film. They are like ads. So they need a launch. It is not so lame after all considering the money that gets thrown at the poster budget

 

Jasmeen G Dugal


Lame launches is coining it! There is a "launch" for everything to make the people doing it feel important and be on "page 3". Even baby showers and staged break-ups!

 

Ruby


There should be an event for the ''best bad whatever...''
which may have an effect with these people. But it may still go over their heads.

 

 

SPONSOR EXPERTS

MEHER CASTELINO | April 01, 2016  


You must be very busy with all the fashion weeks taking place this season.

Yes I am really running around in circles creating different collections for nearly a dozen fashion weeks in the next three months.


Wow, that is a lot of creative work for you.


Yes it is I have to ensure that each collection is different.


Also it must be a strain on your finances spending money on your different collections.


Not at all, I have never ever spent a single cent on any of my collections.

How is that possible?

I always do sponsored shows for every fashion week.

Really, you don
't finance your shows and collections.

Never last season I didn
't have a sponsor till the day before my show then suddenly the makers of hammer and tongs sponsored my collection and paid me handsomely.

Amazing you are so lucky!

Then for the North Pole Fashion Week the makers of ski rods sponsored me.


That
's a little unusual - ski rods and fashion.

Yes it may be but I don
't care as long as I get money and I am sponsored.

I see you ensure that your shows are sponsored otherwise you don
't do them.

That
's right. Of course there are umpteen cell phones, cars, and watch companies who have sponsored my shows too.

Very unconventional tie-ups I must say.

I loved doing shows for liquor, beverage, tea, coffee, soda and even paan masala sponsors. They were so lavish with their money.

I am sure but aren't you concerned about the brands that sponsor you?

Not at all, I even did a sponsored show for a peanut company; ice cream, wafers, pizza, chaat masala, dosas and bhel puri makers.

Your shows sound more like a snack menu instead of a fashion presentation.

The other day I did a show in the trillionnaire
's luxury house to celebrate his great, great, grand mother's birthday and it was totally sponsored.

Unbelievable the type of sponsors you have got.


Well, I am only interested in the money so I even had a tourist resort, construction giant, flyover builder and even a barber shop as sponsors.

My goodness you are really selling yourself so cheap that you are taking sponsors who don't fit your fashion statements.


Well you can say I am selling myself cheap but beggars can't be choosers, where sponsors are concerned.

Why do you say that?


You don't know what a war and battle field it is out there. There are professional sponsor 'experts' who will get you a sponsor for a price

Really is that what is happening?

Yes, all the time and since I am getting sponsors because my collections are so good, I am not complaining.

Well you are truly lucky. You are one designer who doesn't have to beg for sponsors since you are only interested in the money and not the brands.


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Mini Mehta


Your topic this time is very unusual but informative. Did not know this is what is happening behind the scenes in the fashion world. We readers just know what we read in the press. Looking forward to more such interesting behind the scenes stories.



Jasmeen G Dugal


I dont even watch sponsored shows anymore Meher because it's not the designer's creativity or signature style. They have taken money from the sponsor to showcase their brand 'fashionbly.'



Krishna Vilasini


Haha, love the caustic piece. Hammer and Tongs sponsorship indeed :)

 

 

Wendell Rodricks


Fashion has become like cabaret. They pay, we dance



Kaumudi Naithani


There are also sponsors who jump on board last minute and demand product placement on the ramp like say a scooter with models / showstoppers around it or everyone walking in with cigars etc. There was this wave of sponsors sometime in 2010 or so and i remember that a lot of designers demanded that we ( PR agencies) get them sponsors even though that is not our KRA.



Anand Gupta


End of the day fashion is benefited and designer otherwise struggling gets his livelihood and fame.

 

Ruby


Almost everyone in every business seems to be buying people or they don't get business. It is such a crazy situation. In any case they are spending money so why do it in a round about way?

 

 

Air Cmde T.T.Job


She is just doing what Mallaya did. He got the banks to sponsor his Kingfisher Airlines

 

Krishna Mehta


Its the " Business of Fashion" !!!
Helps everybody`s business ....

 

 

Neelima Agrawal


Commerce is the key. A good designer will get spotted anyway

 

 

 

TAKE A BREAK

MEHER CASTELINO | March 15, 2016  


Hi there how are you guys? Is everything okay? You all must be busy with the fashion week just around the corner?

Not at all, we are not in it.


Why what happened, all of you are top designers and pioneers in the fashion business and you are best sellers too!


Well I was told by the organisers that my collections were the same each season so I should take a beak.


That
's crazy you have an identity and a niche market for your clothes so you can't change that!


I was told that I needed to take a break since my creations did not have enough bling and my shows were too straight forward with no razzmatazz.

Isn
't this a 'Business of Fashion' event and not a bridal soiree with glittering clothes?

I was told to take a break since I don’t have showstoppers for my shows.

Really that is ridiculous. Is it a fashion week or a tamasha?

I was told that my showstoppers were not A-List Bollywood stars so I must take a break.

What nonsense are they talking? You are paying for the showstoppers so you can get who you want.

But my reason to take a break was even worse.


Why what happened?

I gave a long list of show stoppers and they were all rejected so I had to take a break.

Why were they rejected?

I am a men
's wear designer so my show stoppers were not approved by the organisers of the fashion week as the lady in charge had a personal tiff with all of them.

Goodness me, are
'pleasing' personal interests of organisers now part of the rules for participation in a fashion week?

Yes it is very important to designers that their collection is appreciated and worn by the head of the fashion week otherwise they have to take a break.

I see never knew that is how it is now?

Also all the show stoppers must be great friends with the organisers of fashion weeks

This is getting totally out of hand,

Then every designer
's collection is approved by the head of the event management company.

You are going too far now with these reasons.


No, we are serious even the makeup and hairstylists have to approve our collections or we are told to take a break.

What nonsense is this, I am shocked.


Well you will be more shocked when we tell you that even the security and ushers have to approve our collection or we are told to take a break.

I don
't believe this, why is that?

They are the ones who handle the crowds and gate crashers at shows so their approval is very crucial.

I think at this rate, it is time fashion weeks in the country need to take a break and make a comeback when they put the Business of Fashion first and all the tamasha, personal interests and vendetta on the back burner.


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Kaumudi Naithani


It seems that the fashion weeks are just a playing field to level the score for personal vendettas ...... sigh ... drama queens!



Caroline Young


Brilliant acerbic wit. But although written 'half' in jest ' in rings sadly very true for a lot of designers.
However I am hopeful as I have noticed a few younger designers are quietly making positive strides ahead and are not intimidated or put off by the 'powers above'
Love Caroline



AM


Could not agree more Meher.Fashion weeks need to get serious about buyers.Indian designers have so much potential to do well domestically as well as internationally.It`s time we got incubation and fashion agencies like the west.Something like CFE/LVMH prize that will select and train serious and hopeful indiviuals.



Mini Mehta


BMy goodness is this what is happening at fashion weeks. They are full of politics and networking it seems. Anyway there are so many fashion weeks that they are getting boring now.



Sreejith Jeevan


Nice one Meher! Bringing out the hidden truths one blog after another :D



Anuj Sharma


enjoy the fashionweek. look forward to reading your fearless thoughts.

 

 

Air Cmde T.T.Job


Managers of most private hospitals who are not doctors ask their doctors to toe the line so that they can make money. Similar fever has caught on in Fashion Industry



Neelima Agrawal


So that is how 'lame fashion weak' is eh? They might as well hold it in the organisers living room. At least someone is brave enough to talk about it.Keep going

 

Jasmeen G Dugal


The business of fashion was very strong at Rajasthan Heritage Week which focused on honest to goodness weavers and now at India Fashion Week whhere all designers are in a positive mood as they are doing brisk business. This season appears to be more business oriented though yes wrestlers turning designer to draw in the media this evening.... was err a bit much maybe!



Wendell Rodricks


And to think I was the one who started this show stopper madness unintentionally when Malaika first walked for me way back. The organizers and board took me to task for hogging the media. But today the organisers want to approve show stoppers. Ridiculous

 

Ruby Vatcha


Isn't this the case with everything everywhere ??? Please them or pay them or EXIT!

 

 

Krishna Mehta


Interestingly ,the concept of the 1st Fashion Week of this country was formulated in my living room with a few like minded heads .
Intention being to tap the immense business potential the Glamorous Indian fashion Industry has .
Surely fashion has been brought to forefront . But sadly, the focus seems shifted from business to glamour !
I can relate to a lot written in here !!

 

 

 

THE RICH AND INFAMOUS

MEHER CASTELINO | March 01, 2016  


Why are you guys looking so sad, anything wrong in your business?

Anyone would be sad if one is gypped.


Why what happened? You are a top designer, and you are a well-known jewellery creator and as for you, don
't you have the most expensive accessories brand licence. What could go wrong?

We are well-known in our fields but it
's the rich and famous people that are driving us into a hole in the ground.


What happened?


These Richie rich people want to wear my creations on the Red Carpet, which I don’t mind but then they don’t want to return any of the very expensive couture outfits.

Oh no, that is not right!

Stylists chase me all the time and want my latest collections for their clients and then don
't bother to return them in good condition.

How sad, this is not right.

My jewellery costs the earth but they disappear after borrowing the necklaces and sets so I incur great losses.

How terrible?

Some of them even demand that they want to borrow jewellery sets for their wedding, Sangeet, mehndi and reception since they can
't afford to buy them and then after using them, say they can't find them.

Goodness this is the height of carelessness and dishonesty.

Of course, they do the same with my foreign handbags and my shoes are a mess since they walk everywhere besides the Red Carpet.

That is really very bad so why do you allow them to borrow such expensive things and make yourselves miserable and incur losses?

Some of them use them for months and then return them in a miserable condition.

How inconsiderate and bad mannered, so why do you go on giving your valuable products to such irresponsible people?

We do it with the assurance that they will mention our names when photographed and we will get some free publicity.

Well if you want 'freebies' then you can't grumble. The rich and famous are quite infamous for borrowing and not returning. You should go for some real genuine advertising campaigns, which will get you good publicity.

We would if people read magazines and newspapers. Today it is the social and electronic media, which people follow. Advertising campaigns are quite pass
e.

Not at all
, haven't you seen, all the highest circulating national dailies are flooded with advertisements and public relations campaigns?

Yes we have seen that.

In fact the print media is even selling their front page with the masthead for advertisements and the back page too along with triple and quadruple centre gate folds.


But one has to pay for editorial publicity as well as public relations activities, which is as good as pseudo advertising now.

I suppose you are right where that is concerned. You are better off with your rich and infamous clients, where you gain a little but lose a lot.

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Jasmeen G Dugal


It's true! I have heard from several designers and jewellers that they have to BEG to get their stuff back from either celbrities or high-profile magazines !! Sad they are doing this for publicity and the socialite celebrity editor is doing it for their gain - at least have the decency to stick to the expected norm of behaviour and return the "goodies".



Vaishali


True :)



Ruby


It is such a round-about. Everyone wanting everything free and absolutely no ethics. No investing for results just grab and grab. Those who do a bit more for a good cause + the red carpet will probably be remembered more and get soul satisfaction but at this age I guess it is a race to the top. But how many can hold it there…



Wendell Rodricks


Best is to be like me. Loan or gift red carpet only to friends You don't need the PR, the star needs the clothes



Air Cmde T.T.Job


Make fake imitations to give to those who do not return the jewllery.



Sangeeta Wadhwani


Hilarious and so very true! You hit the pulse there...



Priti Doshi


Ha ha!! So true again!!

 

 

Kaumudi Naithani


This is so common in the business - love to share two incidents #truestory
The manager of an an A List action star who recently has won accolades for the 'first hit of 2016' demanded that a leading designer store gift the actor an 8 lakh Dolce & Gabbana suit if they wanted him to wear the suit on the red carpet and promote the brand (which they were stocking at that time).
The fashion team of an A -List fashion magazine is known for sourcing clothes for shoots and not returning them on time because the extended editorial team (NOT EDITORS) wear them to parties and their functions. A lot of brands know this and turn a blind eye as they fear their product will not be placed in the magazine if they create an issue.

 

 

Sidharth Bhatia


Very interesting and clever.

 

Mini Mehta


This is a very interesting topic you have picked. I always wondered how these celebs could afford wearing such expensive clothes, jewellery and shoes and now I know that they are all borrowed feathers. How cheap and dishonest can one get. It is better to wear something with your personal hard earned money than flaunt freebies which don't belong to you.

 

Ethel


Absolute fun reading them :)
Have posted on my FB and other social media pages as well :)

 

Tasneem Merchant


very very true Meher Mam uv hit the nail right .Even the so called celebrities tht is socialites borrow fr weddings and social events where thy promise a few lines on fb twitter instagram

 

Rta Chishti


Your tongue in cheek take on the false notions that glamor sustains & promotes are always enjoyable....!

 

Tasneem


Celebriries are one thing but nowadays even paid page 3 socialites r resorting to borrowing gowns fr personal events which is ludicrous your blog projects reality

 

ANAND GUPTA


Maher`s blogs out the facts or present day`s scenario. Even if different but similar in sensibilities was the fact even during the era of Michelangelo. The politics, PR pushing, side lining true artists and using his work under own name did happen.
( A book called Fountainhead would make intresting reading )
Meher belongs to an era where ethics were prime so we get the facts but if we stopby to read some of the others and ask for the prices we could be shocked...

 

Neelima Agrawal


Your blogs are a showcase of the seamier side of the fashion/beauty industry, and the rot behind all that glamour. Keep going.

 

Rimi


I want to let you know I love reading your blog posts. I am an admirer of your writing. I keep looking forward to it every month.

 

 

RED CARPET RANI

MEHER CASTELINO | February 15, 2016  


You must be very happy that your debut film is a big hit.

Yes I am delighted that people think I have talent to be an actress.


So what is your next plan?

I am busy 24 x 7 and it is really crazy and tiring.


What are you busy with another film?


Oh no, I haven
't been offered any films yet. I am busy with my Red Carpet appearances, which are practically every day.

What is there to do for a Red Carpet appearance? Just walk down for 60 seconds. How much planning does that require?

You don
't know anything about a Red Carpet appearance. These days it can make or break an actress.

Really so what are you doing to succeed on it?

First
, I have a meeting with my twelve stylists.

Twelve stylists, I thought stars had one stylist?

Not anymore. Each stylist is for a different time of the day.


Okay then what?

Then we have a brainstorming about the list of designers and which one is for which event.

Fine that should be easy since designers are dying to give their clothes to stars so that they get quick free publicity.

After that there are meetings with the makeup and hair stylists, as well as the footwear and accessory designers.

Alright after that what happens?

Everything has to be managed carefully or the fashion police will tear my appearance to shreds and give me a thumb
's down rating.

I understand that, then what?

After the look is created I have to learn how to pose.


Can't you be natural and just stand gracefully for the photographers?

Are you crazy each dress has to be worn and posed in a different way?


I see, so what are the poses that you have to practice?


I have to ensure that the best angle of my face is towards the camera.

Then what?


After that, a hands-on-the-hips pose is a must, to give the illusion of a tiny waist.

Oh I didn't know that was important.

Then legs have to be crossed to create a slim silhouette.

But doesn't that look silly. You look as if there is an emergency and you need to go urgently, besides it makes your legs look ugly.


You don
't understand that is how it is done on the Red Carpet by all the top film and fashion divas that have become style icons.

But they all look silly with hands on the hips like a tea pot and twisted legs, which make them, look deformed. Why do you want to follow the herd?

 

I don't care; I want to be the Red Carpet Rani at all my appearances for events.

Well if that's what your only aim in life is then you are never going to go up and get an award.


But I will be voted the Best on the Red Carpet, which is more than what many new-comers achieve!



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Kiran Manral


I loved the way you've captured the craziness of the red carpet syndrome. I really am in awe of how focused the new gen is on red carpet and the ferocity of effort that goes into each and every appearance they make.



Mini Mehta


YYour subject this time is just perfect. All these newbies behave as if they know so much about fashion and wear clothes selected by stylists. They don't even have brains to select the right outfit for the right occasion. They are truly dumb clothes hangers and people waste cyber space and their time commenting on their sartorial trends.



Jasmeen G Dugal


Sad but so true! I feel publication editors must stop giving the red carpet and other assorted appearances less coverage and focus more on people... and slowly bring a change .. maybe.



Tina


Awesome article Mehr. Very clever



Kaumudi Naithani


Thanks again .... below is my comment ....
A great spin on the newbies take on the red carpet ... however the Red Carpet is serious business across the globe ...... Personally i have nothing against the red carpet .... in fact it is a perfect platform for a lot of upcoming designers who truly need that exposure....



Neelima Agrawal


Red Carpet Rani..ha ha ha love that. Yes, the teams that work so hard to make even a toad look good



Air Cmde T.T.Job


I could not respond as I was away at Allahabad for my Air Force Batch meet.
" Red carpet is for VIPs. In current context, read pot bellied, corrupt Netas. It is time Fashion World moved on from this muck. I strongly suggest a green carpet."



GRABBING EYEBALLS

MEHER CASTELINO | February 01, 2016  


Hey there you look very sad how is your new job for the film and glamour magazine going?

It
's great but very stressful since I have to think of story angles that are shocking and grab eyeballs.

That should be easy since the movie world has enough happening to keep you busy.

Not all the time, I have to dream up controversies between two female stars about what they are wearing.

Oh that
's not good.

Yes I know. Then my editor wants some verbal spats between male stars so I have to script them too.

How terrible you have become a fiction writer it seems.

Yes nearly, and then when it comes to the fashion world it is even worse.

Why what is happening or not happening there?

Nothing so far as collections are concerned, since they are stuck in anarkalis, lehengas, cholis, dupattas, kurtas, sherwanis, bundgalas and salwars.

But that is what sells so why are you complaining?

But how long can I create eyeball grabbing headlines for the same clothes?


You are right about that, so what do you do?

Even the fabrics that designers use are the same
- chiffon, georgette, satin, crepe and net.

Oh dear that is really bad.

I have to create problem stories between designers, models and the glamour clan and go for the tried and tested trend stories or controversies.

Oh dear that sounds boring so what do you do?

I start a problem of piracy between designers or collections being repetitive and hope that people will love to read about this.

My goodness how sad?

Yes it is but at least my colleagues in the electronic media are lucky.

Why do you say that?

They have the fabulous segment called
"Breaking News" which is a miscellaneous section where anything goes.

How is that? I thought
"Breaking News" is for some earth shaking national or international happening.

Not at all, it is more a filler so they use news like who is the winner of a pet contest or how long a tree takes to bloom or for a man to jump from a palm tree and other such topics.

That sounds ridiculous what is so exciting about such mundane news.


It's the headline "Breaking News" that creates an eyeball grabbing effect on the viewers so they are glued to the screen, which makes the editors happy and so are the reporters.

Goodness is this what news reporting in the print and electronic media has sunk to?

On the World Wide Web there are so many opportunities to grab attention with blogs, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Hangout, etc.

Is that so I did not know that!


That
's why we journalists of the print and electronic media have to be on our toes 24 x 7 since stars and the glamour world can be in the news with greater ease using all these avenues thanks to the cyber world.

You are so right. These days it is important to get noticed fast, no matter what route you take as long as you "Break" into "News" and grab eyeballs.

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Ruby


I guess it is difficult to stay in the limelight all the time. And it would be boring if bad things stopped happening so one has to invent them. And here I was thinking there should be a Happy Newspaper which gives only good news, successful news or about people who really are doing something worthwhile. Well I guess it will not work since good things go out of “fashion” faster !



Mini Mehta


You are so right about this blog everybody is trying to be in the limelight by hook or by crook and the media is no better.They are also trying to be in the news with cooked up stories. Nobody is bothered about real news which should praise genuine achievers instead shocking headlines are important and silly Breaking News.



Air Cmde T.T.Job


Unfortunately, eye balls do not stick out. Hence, it is not easy to grab them.



Neelima Agrawal


"So true. The old adage about smoke and fire is totally turned on its head. Create the smoke first and the fire may or may not happen. The poor journos have a tough life these days...:).



Kaumudi Naithani


Well let us not forget yellow journalism that 'grabs eyeballs" ... ha ha ... great one Meher!



Wendell Rodricks


I wish people would grab eyeballs by seriously good designs rather than antics for the tabloid gallery



Neha


Cannot stop laughing. Is it a true story or Fiction Ma`am! :)



Neha


Well I have stopped reading most of the newspaper and also most of stupid electronic media as they only glamorise stuff without content. I love to read books selective & blogs of few people. Worthy of investing time. I am sure in time to come once the clutter settles down we will be have quality stay. Hope that time comes soon.



Sidharth Bhatia


Very impressive that you write so much!



Pooja Samant


It`s so true...Being entertainment journo i am aware the tensions & pressure media journo has to go threw ! As long as our Bosses needs the Spicy News...things will go on & on..!



 

MAMA'S BIG GIRL

MEHER CASTELINO | January 15, 2016  


Congrats you are the new rising star who has shot to fame with your first movie.

Thanks I am so thrilled the media is crazy over me and I have no time.

You are really looking very glamorous after joining the films compared to when you were in college.

Really I am so glad you noticed, Mama ensured that I got a new hairstyle, colour and makeup so that people love me.

How did you decide and select on signing your first film since you are a total new comer?

My Mama was the one who did all the selecting and deciding on how I would make my movie debut and with whom?

Yes I am sure, so how are you handling all this fame and fortune?


I don
't have to do anything Mama handles it all.

Great but the media must want interviews?

Yes, Mama gives all the interviews on my behalf since I don
't know what to say most of the time.

Okay what about the film roles when directors approach you?

Mama selects the directors and the roles as I am not too familiar with the film business.


I see, what about your wardrobe for events and movies?

Mama approves the designers, clothes and stylists for my appearances.

Wonderful, what about your endorsements?

Mama checks the brands and then signs them up.

But you are now the new fashion and style icon hailed by the media because of your height and figure?

Yes it
's all thanks to Mama who has projected me as a fashion and style diva when she gives interviews.

What about the special appearances you make as a show stopper at fashion weeks for designers?

That has to go through Mama who reviews the designers
' collections and then I am allowed to walk the ramp.

I hear you may start your own fashion label since your personal style is so trendy?

Definitely, Mama is working on it and will design the collection.


What about your Public Relations and promotions activities as a rising star?

All that has been planned by Mama, she is very good at that.

How do you maintain your figure and health during the movie shoots?


Oh Mama has hired a trainer and a dietician who have planned a routine for me.

How do you feel attending all the Bollywood parties, music, poster, trailer and movie launches?

I am very happy since Mama has trained me how to pose for the paparazzi, walk the Red Carpet, wave to the fans and smile with my correct angle towards the camera.

Tell me is there anything that you do in your career or personal life without your Mama's help?


Yes of course, there is one very important thing only I can decide.

What is that?

I only dream when I am asleep, since Mama is so tired at the end of the day and needs to rest.

You are truly a loving Mama's Girl who cares for her mother and allows her to sleep peacefully!

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Mini Mehta


Very interesting and appropriate subject for your blog. Bollywood Mama's have been pushing their children onto the screen for decades and living their dreams through their children. Several child artistes were famous because of their mothers and even now some of the top stars have to thank their mothers for their success.



Kaumudi Naithani


One girls MAMA is another person's Nightmare ..... ha ha ... Good one Meher ...



Neelima Agrawal


Very nice blog. "Such a sketch of nubile babes and their ambitious controlling moms in showbiz."



Jasmeen G Dugal


Yes! One used to hear a lot especially from veteran actors like Sridevi for instance! But today's lot seem to be focussed, clear about their vision and how to get there!



Air Cmde T.T.Job


Earlier, a God Father was good enough. Now you need a hyperactive Mama.



Sunaina Suneja


hey Meher, some of your blogs are provocative: they make me sit back and think, this must be reality. it's weird.



Meher Castelino


Dear Neelima, Jasmeen, Job, Mini and Kaumudi many thanks for the great comments you have been sending and am delighted you are enjoying the blog. Do please keep writing in.



Meher Castelino


Hi Sunaina glad you are enjoying the blog and they are creating a thoughtful impact. Thank you and do please keep the comments coming.



SOLO WEEK

MEHER CASTELINO | January01, 2016  


Why are you looking so happy and excited?

I am going to do something unusual and innovative in the fashion business in 2016.

What will you do?

You know there are so many fashion weeks with hundreds of designers that buyers and retailers are going crazy.

I know that but what has it got to do with you?

Well I am going to organise a different kind of fashion week.

How different can your fashion week be? There are already fashion weeks for casual, bridal, resort, beach, children, diffusion, pr
et, lingerie - there is no more category left.

I am going to do a solo week.


What do you mean by a solo week?


You know that fashion weeks have over 100 designers. Well my fashion week will have only one designer.

Only one then why do you need a whole week for it?

Well my week will be just three days that is the new length of a week. Please don
't be passe and think of seven days in a week. Nobody thinks that way.

Okay so you will have a solo week with just one designer for three days then what?

Buyers and retailers are getting confused with hundreds of designers so I am going to concentrate on one designer who will be selected out of hundreds of designers.

I see then what?

On the first day the shows will start at 11 am and continue till 1.00 pm when lounge wear will be shown. The there will be a lunch break. The next round will be from 2 to 4 pm when it will be day wear, then a break for tea.

After that what will happen?

Then from 6-9 pm will be the cocktail wear shows after which there will dinner.

Sounds good for the first day what about the second and third days?



On the second day the timing will be the same but the shows will be on resort wear in the morning, sportswear in the afternoon and evening wear at night.

That is really interesting.

On the third day it will be beach/lingerie/resort wear followed by casual wear and finally it will end with bridal wear in the night.


You have really got everything sorted out. But why only one designer.

One designer will get complete coverage for three days. Buyers and retailers can relax and order from him. I have a great sponsor who will get total publicity and so will the designer. There is no distraction like in other fashion weeks.

This is a brilliant idea but do you think the press will cover just one designer for three days?


There will be Bollywood showstoppers at every show so the media will go crazy with the glamour. Global media will be hosted for the three days.

So where will the solo week be held?

I want a captive audience so it will be held in a secluded venue far from the maddening crowd at the foot hills of the Himalayas.


Is this a solo fashion week or a spiritual cleansing of fashion?



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Mini Mehta


Wish you a great year of interesting blogging as always. Your subject this time is just right since there are so many versions of fashion weeks so why not one like this. Hilarious read.



SP Taneja


Wish you a very very Happy New Year too. And shall look forward to more and more meaningful Blogs in the days ahead! All the best!!



Wendell Rodricks


Going Solo is the new Fashion Follow:DW



Kaumudi Naithani


I wonder if anyone has done this because this sounds like a fancy expo or exhibition event where you have many stalls for 3 days but in this case just one designer. On one hand i am laughing, on the other hand there are some serious points to be considered.1. Unless you are an established designer, you are not covered by the media unless you have an A List celebrity showstopper. 2. There are so many designers out there ( i would not consider many even artists or good designers) that everyone is trying to find different ways to stand out. 3. What is wrong with the world today!



Jasmeen G Duga


hahahahahaha it's definitely spiritual cleansing! But with so so many fashion weeks how do media and buyers differentiate and attend all :O



Neelima Agrawal


Aha..the perfect solution to over crowded runways, the missing buyer, the media focused on filmy showstoppers. Your satirical blogs hit home.



B S Bhatnagar


Like all the previous one Meera and I thoroughly enjoyed it. We marvel at the ideas/topics you get and the way you deal with these. Congratulations. Wishing you and yours the very best.



Ruby


I think everyone just wants instant everything and have forgotten that it takes years of hard work and experience and good will created to reach the top finally achieving a brand name.



Job


Nice idea. Worth trying out. If it is not a success, she can take a walk up the Himalayas and become a sanyasin.



EMPTY VESSELS

MEHER CASTELINO | December 15, 2015  


Hey guys why are you all looking so sad anything wrong?

We have made fools of ourselves by following big names for our brands and stores?

Why what happened? You are all top retailers and brands in the fashion business and you have launched collections by celebs and stars, so you must be laughing all the way to the bank?

You are so wrong we are crying ourselves into a miserable hole.

Why what is wrong?

I brought in a Bollywood style icon, who is known for her fashion sense and elegance to design a collection.

So what happened?

She didn
't know the first thing about design or the "F'' of fashion nor could she talk about style and tried to create a collection in her name.

So that
's good

But the collection was a flop since buyers hated the line as it was a far cry from what she was seen wearing.

Oh dear that is bad.

In my case I brought in an item girl to create a collection but she made such skimpy garments that I lost the customers I had for my brand.


Now that is really sad.

I had an even worse experience. I felt this handsome Bollywood hunk will design great men
's wear for me but he didn't have the time to put pen to paper and I lost money after paying him a hefty sum for doing nothing.

How tragic but you had a foreign label why did you bring in a star when you are doing so well?

Well everyone has a star to create collections for them so we didn
't want to lag behind so we brought the Empress of Bollywood as our collection creator.

So what happened?

She went laughing all the way to the bank and I am trying to off- load the rubbish that is designed under her name at rock bottom prices.

Oh dear that is the worst news I have heard.



I thought I would be different so I got a Bollywood producer/director to design a collection for our label.

That is very sensible

But he was more interested in dancing
, acting; promoting, singing, judging, discovering new talent and generally promoting himself that he forgot that the clothes were more important.

Oh no that must have been a shock for you.

It was a financial shock from which I will not be able to recover I think.

What about you what went wrong in your case?


My case is the worst I didn't hire any celeb or stars. I got a star's spouse to design a collection and she was never available since she was fighting with her star husband.

Well I suppose you all will live and learn. Remember when it comes to designing, stars and celebs are empty vessels that are full of sound and fury signifying nothing. Their lives revolve around picking up clothes from well-known designers, collecting fat fees, getting stylists and then posing for photographers and proclaiming themselves as fashionistas.

 



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Gautam Kotamraju


I love your interactive style!



Mini Mehta


You have picked the correct topic. One reads about stars and celebs designing for brands and stores and the clothes are so sub standard that no one wants to waste money on them. When will brands learn that it is good designing that makes all the difference and not a glamorous name.



Jasmeen G Dugal


The blog does bring back memories from a past season of Lakme Fashion Week where I noticed a vey very well known Bollywood actress' stylist going to the new and lesser known designers' stalls and saying they would get publicity when the "star" wore the garments which would of course be gifted free of cost! At one stall the stylist made the designer strip because she said the actress "would love her for that look!"



Job


This is what happens to people who want to make a quick buck using celebrities


Kaumudi Naithani


Hi Meher, This is so true. It is very difficult to justify the cost of a celebrity association unless you are a FMCG or corporate giant. I really think that smaller businesses should go ahead with this after setting their expectations - No sales objective but a PR objective to raise awareness at best.


Wendell Rodricks


I know every star celeb in this article. Bottom line is that fashion has become so fashionable that every celeb star wants to ride this wild horse called fashion


Priti Doshi


Empty vessels make more noise!! Good one Meher.


Pooja Samant


It's so hilarious... But now a days empty vessels make more noise..! Isnt that true..? :)


NUMBERS MATTER

MEHER CASTELINO | December 01, 2015  


Do you know my life is made I am so thrilled?

Really what have you done?

I have got over 50 lakh friends on Facebook.

Oh my goodness that is amazing
, fifty lakh friends must be keeping you so busy. I have five friends and can't keep in touch with them.

You are really behind times. Today the person with the most contacts can shake the world..

Oh I suppose I am a little shy.

Also do you know I have one crore followers on Instagram
, which keeps me really busy.

That is so awesome. How did you manage that?

I upload images of myself nearly every minute informing the world where I am.

You are so tech savvy!

Another good news is that I have two crore followers on Twitter
, which is just mind-blowing.

Wow, an impressive figure.

I also have a blog
, which is on fashion, travel, life, health, sports, interior decor, cooking, style, archaeology, music, drama, singing, acting and any subject that I can think of which gives me three crore followers.

You are great keeping your followers informed on all avenues of social media.

Yes it is. Even if I sneeze, cough, take a sip of water or brush my teeth, I inform all my followers on social media.

Oh but isn
't it a little boring, who wants to know when you brush your teeth, it's no big achievement, everyone does that every morning.

You don
't understand counting numbers is important so I ensure that the numbers on all my social media accounts are soaring continuously.

But how do you do that? You are not a Bollywood star, celeb or achiever?

My dear you don't know, today you can buy anything.



What do you mean buy anything?


Listen, just like you can become a celebrity, designer or socialite by buying media net, you can get numbers too.


I still don
't understand what you mean?

See PR agencies can keep you in the news even if you haven
't got out of your bed, the same way numbers are important.

Okay I understand PR agencies are constantly dreaming up stories and controversies to keep their clients in the news but you are nobody and jobless yet with a massive following on social media.

Do you know there are agencies who supply designers to fashion week organisers? So similar there are ways of getting followers on social media.


So you mean all these crores of followers you claim, are bought?

Of course, but look what this little expense has done for me. I am a big name globally and soon I will attain celebrity status once my PR team publicises it.

Well I have heard of people being thrilled when their bank balance goes up by crores but you are happy with just crores of followers on social media.

This is the age of ego massages, my dear where numbers matter on social media, which in turn lead to bank balances going up.

This seems to be the latest way to fame and fortune if you have nothing better to do.

 



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Ranjit Rodricks


Meher, this is hilarious! Love it



Mini Mehta


My goodness this is what is now happening in the social media business. Are people so diffident that they need external gratification and praise. Don't they have confidence in themselves and their abilities. Really shocking. You have written about it in a really humorous but telling manner



Neha


Our latest Fashion Week endevour made us realize the same. I am sure in time to come when all this will settle down & quality shall stand out!



Anand Gupta


if ever I get lost in a Kumbh Mela with my smart phone I will have nothing else to do but horn my SM skill along side the Naga Sadhus who are now tech savy more then one can imagine.
Only Meher can come up with such brilliant out of the box topics, Compliments Meher.


Ruby


We really seem to be having dumb ones making money. But for how long and constantly?



Wendell Rodricks


I don't have a following on social media and am happy for my peace of mind



Jasmeen G Dugal


Hi Meher! I agree followers these days, be it social media or portal, are all available at a price. Which is why I have to go out of my way to convince brands of the importance of key target audience rather than crores of hits and no buyers :-(



Pooja Kapoor


Another brilliant concept and so well captured! Although, sometimes i wonder if i should laugh or just cringe at the current state of things.


Neelima Agrawal


Your blog on virtual friends and followers is on the button - a phony figure bought by campaigning with the provider. Yet the marketing guys love the numbers! To Each His Delusion of Grandeur...You keep it up Wise Meher


FAUX AMBASSADORS

MEHER CASTELINO | November 15, 2015  


I am so thrilled I am now an ambassador.


You are an ambassador of which country? You are a Bollywood star!


I am a Bollywood star that is why I have become an ambassador.


I don
't understand how you can be a political ambassador, you should be signing movies.

I have nothing to do with politics I am a brand ambassador for many products.

Which products and why are you called an ambassador?

I have signed up with a foreign fashion brand as their ambassador, which is the new term for model.

But you don
't know anything about fashion?

I agree but designers will design and I will be the face of the brand and get paid.

I see so what
's great about that?

I am the brand ambassador for foreign jewellery brands.

Do you know about jewellery and the difference between diamonds and crystals?

No, but they have a designer for that. I will just wear the jewellery and pose and get paid an eight-digit amount.

That sounds very easy.

I am also the brand ambassador of a real estate project.

What do you know about real estate and construction?

Nothing, they will build but I will get some free flats. I am also the brand ambassador for a holiday resort abroad.

Do you know the background of the country and the resort?

No, but I can visit the resort free as often as I want with all expenses paid for life. I am also the brand ambassador for a popular toothpaste and have to give talks on dental hygiene.

You don
't know anything about that.

I don
't but I have a great smile and they will write my speech so I will read it out. Besides all dental work and holidays aboard for my family and I are free.

That
's really great.

I am also the brand ambassador of an investment website.

You don
't know anything aobut investment banking.

I don
't but they will be paying me since I am good investment for their website.

I wouldn't trust a site, which thinks you are a good investment.

I am also the brand ambassador for a foreign airline.

Very good but what do you know about aviation?

Nothing, I just smile and pose in front of their aircrafts and my family and I get lifetime tickets for global travel.

How clever of you.

 

I am also the brand ambassador of a foreign car and they give me a new car annually for life.

That sounds superb but you are nothing more than a model for all these brands so why this title of ambassador?


My best endorsement is brand ambassador for an international bank. I get paid a nine figure fee annually for the rest of my life.
.

How fabulous.

I am called an ambassador because of my star power to draw the consumers to the product.

But when will you act in films?

I am making more money than stars and even real foreign ambassadors so why worry about signing movies.

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Sathya Saran


Scathing and on target as always! Kudos.



Tarun Tahiliani


MEHR these are HYSTERICAL x TT



Mini Mehta


What a perfect subject you have chosen for your blog. Yes these fake ambassadors have taken over the modelling world and I wonder how well the products are doing. I think now the consumers are smart and are not falling for all this Bollywood glamour which is just rubbish and trying to fool the people
Mini M



Wendell Rodricks


At this rate...I am open to ambassador of anything



Priti Doshi


Aishwarya!!

You have a great tongue in cheek humor sense!!



Job


"All you need is a face and figure that can launch a thousand ships."



Gautam Kotamraju


As always, very entertaining to read the 'interview' style blog of yours.
Will keep looking forward to more such mind benders!



Jasmeen G Dugal


This is so true! I do feel it's time corporates take a real look at who is endorsing their product as these stars only live for money and freebies.



kaumudi


Awesome Meher .... there are some merits of being a brand ambassador but these days it is ridiculous how out of control this whole ambassador thing has become...



Neelima Agrawal


Atta girl Meher!! Keep it coming..Hope the Brand's marketing guys are reading the blog - what is the desired selection criteria for a Brand Ambassador??



Ranjit Rodricks


I think being a brand ambassador of multiple brands is not as bad as stars, socialites, designers and bloggers "buying" followers on social media.
That is the worst thing to happen to business.



Ruby


Well, I guess it's great to be beautiful and rest after some success then why work? Unfortunately, not all of them are interested in uplifting others or giving everyone a fair chance. And some with real talent stop working.

What can one say?



Sou Boyy


Amazing!



Krishna Mehta


Hahahaha....
What a great life for a lifetime!!



Krishna Mehta


One more interesting thing is now HOT!
Dressing the so called, celebs.

Self claimed Professional stylists have mushroomed, who come to designers to source clothes for upcoming, established etc all sorts of stars!!

Everywhere they go, they ask for a dress!which is worn and returned!

We only have garments to fashion magazines for their photo shoots which helped out sales as they gave so much visibility!

Now people must be seeing pictures of the so called stars more than the fashion magazines as they claim, so need to change strategies....


BLOGGER SPOTTING

MEHER CASTELINO | November 01, 2015  


I am so excited, very soon I will start a fashion blog, but first I must groom myself for it. Haven
't you seen how bloggers around the world dress?

Groom yourself to start a fashion blog? Don
't you think you need to first know about fashion?

That is a secondary matter
, which I will pick up on the way. The most important thing is I have to look like a blogger, so photographers chase me and click my picture.

What do you mean look like a blogger? Who is going to look at you
, they are going to read what you write.

Are you crazy
, people first look at the blogger and then read them. I will have to upload my selfies all the time on my blog so I have to look the part and be unique.

Okay if that is what you feel is important
, so what will you do?

First I have to start with my hair. I will colour
, dye, streak, straighten and curl it in rainbow hues and ensure my crowning glory is a striking vision.

Okay then what?

Next my eye makeup has to be eye-catching. Maybe I
'll go for magenta, turquoise, teal, taupe eye shadow and liner all together and make expressive eyes.

Sounds quite an eyeful!

Of course my lips are very important. Maybe some Botox or collagen fillings will enhance them and I will give tough competition to Angelina Jolie.

Well if that
's what you want it's fine.

Next on my bucket list is body art, which I will need.

Whose body and what art?

My body of course, on, which I will display my hidden artistic talents by painting my arms and legs.

Are you sure that
's wise, it could get a little messy as the paint wears of.

It won
't wear of, it will be permanent colour.

Oh dear you will be stuck for life with your amateur etchings.

Clothes are what make or break a blogger
's image and they have to be really innovative, bizarre but outstanding.

So where will you buy them?

Buy never, clothes in stores are mundane. I think I
'll go for my Dad's trousers team them with my mum's choli and borrow my kid sister's jacket that will be such a wild trio never before seen.

If you say so!

Next is my handbag. I dislike these foreign brands they are so pass
e everyone carries them. I'll check what my corner vegetable vendor uses to carry his vegetables and borrow that. What a great style statement I will make!

What about the vegetable vendor, what will he use?

Oh don
't worry he'll manage. Now for some really cool shoes that are really haute.

What do you have in mind?

I'm a little stuck here but I saw my postman wearing some trendy sandals maybe I will borrow them.

Poor postman he has to go bare feet.

I
'm going to be such a hit at the next fashion week where blogger spotting is a big thing and photographers will love me for my quirky fashion sense.

I don't know about quirky but you definitely will be clownish.

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Mini M


Yes these bloggers are coming out of the woodwork these days. Earlier every second person was a model now every second person is a blogger. It is nothing but an ego massage where they upload their pictures in weird outfits and wait for people to comment.They have nothing sensible to say about fashion nor do they know the first thing about fashion.



Dipankar Zalpuri


Very well put article Meher..
Wish u a very happy diwali and happy new year!


Vivek


Bloggers have probably taken the saying "Look the part" literally.


Wendell Rodricks


I know other kinds of bloggers who sit home in oily plaits, stolen five star hotel bathrobes and bedroom slippers and do their comments on celeb dressings while they look like slobs at home eating greasy French fries and guzzling coffee while surfing the net ad nauseum.


Jasmeen G Dugal


So true Meher. Sometimes I feel out of sync when wearing normal ensembles by my favourite designers because people expect bizarre when you mention 'online'. Which reminds me.. I met a boy dressed in an "interesting" manner with just swim trunks and a miniscule vest. He mentioned he was an "online fashion stylist". Still wondering what that description really is.


Air Cmde T.T.Job


MERA NAAM JOKER


Ruby


Everyone seems to want instant gratification at any cost. Sometimes this rag outfit looks cool but most of the time not. But then each to his own. We all go through phases as we age but as a fashion statement I don't think it works. In any case you cannot continue doing this, at some stage it dies off. So why waste time trying to fool people ???


Kaumudi


Some are good ... some are terrible ... And some come for events for freebies and CRIB!


Neelima Agrawal


"You nailed it Meher. Fashion bloggers are a kind..."
love.

 

 

BORED WANNABE

MEHER CASTELINO | October 15, 2015  


Why are you looking so sad and depressed?

I am bored I don
't know what to do. I have everything, money, loving husband, great children but nothing to do. I want to be somebody and famous.

Why don
't you bring out a collection of clothes or jewellery? Every bored rich housewife is doing it.

No, that is so tiresome. I will have to get a designer to create the collections for me.

But why don
't you study designing, you have all the time in the world.

Study designing how boring. It
's a waste of time, besides there is so much competition in the fashion and jewellery designing world. Everybody from Bollywood stars, producers, directors, singers, item girls, are becoming designers.

Okay then why don
't you produce a film, every rich wife is now a film producer.

No, how boring I will have to run after stars and get their dates and tolerate their tantrums. Besides that, the film might be a flop.

Okay then how about opening a fashion and lifestyle store. Every woman who has time and money to spare is launching a store and being hailed as a style diva.

No that
's boring. First I will have to get a great location and with real estate being expensive and not available it's nearly impossible.

I have a great idea why don't you endorse a social cause like women's empowerment, child abuse, animal welfare, anti-dowry movement, anti-child marriages; girl child, there are so many causes you can pick from.

No that's so boring there's too much politics and infighting amongst these groups and they don
't do anything earth shaking.

Okay then how about politics you can join a political party and even end up becoming a minister.

Oh no, politics is not my cup of tea, it's so boring. I don't know anything about it. It's a tricky business.

I know just the thing for you to do. Why don't you buy a sports team
- cricket, football, hockey, tennis, kabaddi there are so many sports even - gully danda.

Sports don
't interest me at all; I am not athletic and hate activity of any kind.

I have the best idea, why don't you become a writer, maybe pen your autobiography, a travel book or a historical novel. They are very much in vogue and nearly everyone is rewriting the mythological classics.

Writing and me, how boring, I hate putting pen to paper. The only thing I can write is the list for the daily kitchen shopping.

Then I am afraid I can't think of anything more for you to do, you are just not interested.

I know what I can do to become famous and not bored!

What will you do?

I will become a socialite.

A socialite what is that?

I will give parties, invite the creme de la creme of society and then get featured and feted on Page 3 thanks to media net and then I will be famous.

Well, if that is what your ambition is then you will be part of the group of bored wannabes who got famous only thanks to parties and Page 3.

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Mini M


You have really nailed it this time. One reads about rich wives who suddenly become famous and Page 3 news all because they have money to promote themselves or be seen at social events and get photographed but their contribution is nil it's only their husband's money that does the talking.



Ruby


If one does not have money one cannot afford to be bored or not do anything. There are many people who want things without lifting a finger. They prefer to sleep late, get up late, laze and keep updating their facebook page with their photos. This is also a way of attracting attention to the stupidest things that are put up. And we are asked to comment on this and that. And I find that extremely boring and a waste of time.

 


SP Taneja


Good; you have not spared anyone.

 


Philu Martins


Ever since I even new to spell fashion . I have been reading n collecting almost all the news paper cut outs of your writing about fashion . You for me r the big guru of the industry . Thank you for your email. N I loved the blogs . Totally true N hilarious . You so rt about everyone wants to be a designer.

 


Wendell Rodricks


There is already a Bored Housewives Club.
It is not registered as they are scared of too many members with the same ideas

 


Air Cmde T.T.Job


Are you rich and bored? Are you over 50 and having pepper and salt hair covered by Godrej? Very few women throw out their old clothes. Fish in your ward robe for old dresses worn 30 years back and put it into a fashion show. Over night you are a celebrity!!!! Also, you have got rid of your boredom.

 


Jasmeen G Dugal


It's so true. I dont understand why wanabe "socialites" always want to be on page 3 through media net. And the trend doesnt seem to be fading at all! Each season comes with its new set of faces! But does it have value in this day and age?

 


Kareen Parwani


This is one topic that has been on my mind since forever .I guess people don't take fashion design seriously anymore. Bored home makers just start up with no business ethics or anything. That's the reason why the market has become So saturated.

 


Priti Doshi


Ha ha ha............ So true!!

 


Mona Shroff


Soo true. These so called socialites cannot hold a conversation but keep posing in front of the camera`s with their artificial smile . I have stopped reading page 3 because of this.

 


kaumudi


ha ha .... they can also start a charity or NGO! ha ha ha ha ...

 


Anand Gupta


It doesn`t matter if the cat is black or white, what matters is how well it catches mice....so is the story of a woman with confidence of money.....

 


Neelima Agrawal


You have nailed many now..ha ha
'Meher, this is 'Massacre by the Mighty Pen'. Even the R&B (rich and bored) have a right to FAME, the one elusive thing missing in their super bowl lives. You ought to start a consultancy.'

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FINALLY IT IS AIDFW

MEHER CASTELINO | October 1, 2015  


I am so excited finally it has happened in the fashion world.

What has happened?

The AIDFW, it has happened and now everything will move smoothly?

What
's AIDFW a new association or a council?

No it stands for Artificial Intelligence Designer Fashion Week and it's wonderful.

Oh that is what it is! So why is it wonderful?

Don't you realise this is the best thing that has happened to the worldwide fashion business in decades. Now everybody will be relieved and happy.

How is that and what does it mean?

This means that fashion collections can be designed by artificial intelligence so we don't need designers.

Really is that possible?

Of course, we buy clothes and fashion on-line all the time without going to retail stores, so now we will get clothes designed without designers.

Oh but why is that wonderful won't you miss the designers?

Are you crazy, dealing with designers is the most traumatic thing in the world - their attitude, indiscipline, unorganised behaviour - I can go on and on about them.

Oh is it that bad?

Of course first of all you can't get in touch with them. As a buyer it is next to impossible. As a media person it is a nightmare as designers put on so much attitude and airs that even the kings and queens didn't do that when they are on the throne.

Oh dear is that what they do?

Yes, and as a retailer it is even worse as designers really make them run around in circles. With all this I wonder how they do business.

Oh that sounds really bad.

Then they put on attitude and don't deliver on time and if they deliver promptly then the goods are substandard.

Oh that is not nice.

At fashion weeks there are tantrums about wanting to do the opening and grand finale shows.

Oh dear is that what happens?

Of course, one must not forget the designer clans and cliques, where only a few are allowed and in the news.

Oh that is so sad.

Then the fashion week organisers behave like kingmakers who can make or break designer's career.

Really is that what they think they can do?

Of course besides that there are so many fashion weeks they are getting boring.

Yes, that is true but won't you miss all the glamorous parties, glitz and glitter of the real fashion world, rubbing shoulders with designers and models.

Are you joking who is interested in the real world? Now it's all in cyber space so with the AIDFW it is all out there in space with no venue hassles, locations, rush for invitations and most important all the front row frenzy, which takes place because of inflated egos.

Does this mean finally the fashion world is now one big cyber ball, and I agree with you about what a relief it will be for everybody?

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Ruby


Everything seems to be going into cyber space and there also I am sure there will be jealousy, quarrels, no ethics and other human faults in spite of moving technologicall forward. Also everyone will turn fat as they will all be sitting at home with their I phones or laptops or whatever. And probably will still dress up as their photos will be all over.They tried doing cyber trade fairs and it did not take off, they needed the human touch. So maybe this will also not work in the long run as the human brain is still behind everything.

Tarun Tahiliani


hysterical

Neelima Agrawal


Great blog again. "Good advise Meher. Professionalism is the norm in these changing times."

Mini Mehta


Your subject this time for the blog is very unusual but very important since this is the way fashion will finally go. There are so many problems with shows, designers, sponsors that eventually a cyber show with cyber designers will be the only answer. Already live streaming is going on with viewers around the world watching shows without actually attending them.


Kaumudi


As long as you write from the heart and its not about profit im happy to read the article.... ha ha !!!!


Kaumudi


ha ha ha ha I am cyberimpressed with this post!!!!!!


Anand Gupta


Its a breed that's bungee jumping - never know when the rope will snap - as has happened to many if you look into their financials...


Jasmeen G Dugal


hmmm well there are a few designers who do just that ;-)


Air Cmde T.T.Job


Artificial Intelligence may be better than intelligence of some designers. Design using AI and manufacture using 3D printing


Wendell Rodricks


Cyber Fashion Weeks will stay a pipe dream in cyber space. No way out but to deal with star designer tantrums and fashion week organiser's outsize egos.


Krishna Mehta


Hahaha . U can see me smiling right ...


Jattinn Kochhar


OMG....LMAO...


Ranjit Rodricks


Awesome post Meher. You better copyright this idea and the title of the show. I can see it taking shape in the near future :)


Kaumudi


As long as you write from the heart and its not about profit im happy to read the article.... ha ha !!!!


WEB STARS OR PEN PUSHERS

MEHER CASTELINO | September 15, 2015  


My daughter wants to be a fashion journalist but she can't make up her mind what kind.

What do you mean she can't make up her mind, you just said she wants to become a fashion journalist so it's settled.

Yes but should she choose the web or become a pen pusher?

Why what's the big problem, pick either?

No you don't understand, today it is the web and online articles that rule the world not the conventional print media.

Really I didn't know that, I thought newspapers and magazines are very much in demand?

They are around but they are making huge losses as the whole world has gone viral and so have the journalists.

Really so what does your daughter plan to do?

She was thinking of starting her own fashion website or becoming a fashion blogger.

She might be a trained journalist but is she a trained designer? To be a good fashion journalist, you need to be a designer and a journalist.

Oh that is not a problem she will see some fashion shows, talk to few designers and learn about fashion on the job.

Really, you think it is that easy?

Of course haven't you seen how the fashion bloggers and fashion website owners are fed, wined and dined even though they have no clue about fashion?

Oh I didn't know that is going on?

Yes these bloggers and fashion website writers only dress well and network at parties and publicise themselves on their blogs and sites and become stars overnight.

Oh dear this sounds like a personal public relations exercise.

Of course and it is so wonderful. Have you ever heard of a print fashion journalist being wined, dined and treated like a star?

Well not recently at least.

In fact they are the least important lot now. Today there are seminars, discussions, programmes held only for the web stars. They are invited abroad to talk about their experiences and have thousands of followers online. Can a print journalist boast of something like that?

No I suppose not, print journalists are very low key and understated as far as their work is concerned, they like to promote the designers not themselves.

You are right about that but on the web it is self-promotion first and then the products and to crown it all, the brands are willing to pay the blogger or web journalists to endorse their products.

Oh is that what is happening now?

Yes, and that has brought forth a huge group of influential bloggers and web journalists who drive the products and turn them into best sellers.

So then what's the difference between paid news in the print media and the one online? Aren't both these the same? They are after all pseudo advertisers who make a quick buck by selling their profession and turn themselves into products. So now it's goodbye fashion journalism and hello self and product promotions.

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Ranjit Rodricks


The worst is when both - bloggers as well as print journos - buy followers on social media to bolster their supposed fame.These days, even stylists & designers are buying followers in bulk. Tch! Tch!


Neelima Agrawal


"Ahaa, you said it. Some of these 'fashion' journalists also lack basic language skills."


Hemant Trevedi


Yet again... absolutely spot on Meher! And this comment (coming, from a veteran, who set the ball rolling for my colleagues of our fashion industry). Sitting opposite me recently (in a front row of a successful progidy's show) was someone I was told, was a popular "blogger". She appeared clueless & seemed more occupied looking into the goody-bag kept on our seats. YOU my dear... is the ONLY one I will follow & subscribe too. Simply because (with your experience in this industry)... YOU KNOW THE BEANS lady!


Air Commodore T.T.Job


THE WEB IS MIGHTIER THAN THE SWORD.


Kareen Parwani


Its a wonderful topic that you've touched upon. Now a days, at fashion weeks or even otherwise the amount of importance that is being given to bloggers and journalists is crazy! Without any formal training or know-how they are turning into stars! And here we are, still getting educated and waiting to launch ourselves!


Kevin Phillips


Thanks Meher Always enjoy the blogs. Love,


i Karmik


but in the end Meher, whether it's the Web or the Print, purists persist while the fakers fade away. You of all have seen so many young 'webstars' rise & fall before the end of Fall! While I know of 'print-pushers' who are literally pushing their luck way past acceptable norms of basic grammar. And mind you, have seen both wine, dine and then whine all the same, together.... Funny that it should be called print though when it's all actually a 'web', no pun-intended there. :-) super read as always Thanks,


Pooja Kapoor


Seriously sad state of affairs! Really very well put Meher


Jasmeen G Dugal


Your blog is spot on! I recently ncountered a lady who owns a PR agency and is goo at her work - PR. But she now wants to be a journalist and doesnt let media cover her client preferring to be in the "limelight". It's a blur. No longer are degrees and courses appreciated. It's just, well,PR.


Ruby


As they say you can fool some of the people some of the time and eventually they get to know the scam which causws more damage.But in the case of fashion specially in our country everything seems to work.The print journalist I guess has to also go online and make a case which these self made professionals then cannot argue with.


Mini Mehta


You have selected a great subject for your blog this time. Yes everything and everybody is going viral but for how long one wonders? Things could get a bit messy after a little while and only the fittest will survive. The print media is still very much there though if paper becomes a problem then it could be in danger.


Sreejith Jeevan


So true! Thanks for sharing!


Sreejith Jeevan


Yes ofcourse I do. And there is no other way to write about things like these. Writing about it as is directly would be offensive or trying to be too literal. This gives the scenario so perfectly





WEEKLY TAMASHAS

MEHER CASTELINO | September 1, 2015  


I am totally confused as a buyer when it comes to the business of fashion.

Why what is the problem now?

There are so many fashion weeks all over the country and they are taking place weekly and at times on the same days too.

Yes, there are many fashion weeks, but why are you confused about that, is it not great having so many to visit and do more business?

When I visit a fashion week first of all it is not for a week but for 5, 3, 2 or one day so why call them weeks, which I thought meant 7 days.

Now don't be so picky about these little things, everyone has their own way of interpreting a week.

Is that how it is these days?

Yes, you must have heard people saying they work 48 hours a day when we all know a day has 24 hours, so please be flexible about the number of days in a week.

Well okay, another problem is trying to track down the designers at fashion weeks.

Why is that a problem they are there to do the shows and in their stalls right?

Some fashion weeks have designer stalls for business, while others don't so how does one contact them?

That's true it must be a problem.

The other thing is there is less of fashion at fashion weeks and more of everything else.

What do you mean everything else?

They do have fashion shows but they are just a small part of the fashion week. There are more rock bands, cooking contests, clowns, stand-up comics, art galleries, food court, motivation speakers, heritage talks, dramas, food tasting stalls, homemade jams and biscuits sales, ice-cream and snack bars, jugglers, comedians, dancers, acrobats, lounges, tea stalls, coffee bars, free sampling of foods.

Really all this is at a fashion week; this sounds more like a fun fair?

Yes then there are singers, massage experts, lucky dips, fancy dress prizes. I really get so distracted I keep forgetting to concentrate on fashion.

You are right but shouldn't fashion weeks be only for buying and placing orders on the latest collections for the coming season?

They are supposed to be but there are hardly any buyers. There are more invitees and gate crashers who come for a good time.

Oh dear this must be so depressing for you since you are a serious buyer.

Yes of course, I don't know where to go to place orders for my store these days.

Poor you, these weekly tamashas must be entertaining for the general public but for someone like you they must be disastrous.

I suppose I will have to get used to it. Just like the entertainment industry creates tamashas in all walks of life whether it is sports, politics, law or even medicine; the fashion business has also turned into one big weekly tamasha and giving strong competition to the fun fairs around the country.

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Neelima Agrawal


"Very valid point made Meher. Whither buyers?? 'Media is more interested in the goss or celebrities. Bling is getting blingier."


Kaumudi


The legitimacy of these so called "fashion weeks" is truly questionable. I love fashion but these self-serving events has killed my interest in fashion weeks. And one must be really desperate to gatecrash these events!!!!!!!


Neha


I am glad to read this. it is an eye opener to read your blog. A total reality check.


Air Commodore T.T.Job


Flowers have honey to attract bees. Hidden agenda is transportation of pollen. Thamasha is to attract people . Hidden agenda is fashion sales. Missed you at Mumbai,


Priya Pathiyan


Very nicely put :) You're making a serious and very valid point through a light-hearted, engaging conversation.


Ruby


The whole problem is that everyone wants to go solo, specially the start ups.They don't want to specialize, better their skills and really reach somewhere before they parade their stuff. And so they need props to attract visitors and have all other performers.If they were serious and just concentrated in making a good fashion show or with other beginners like themselves but only fashion then they would get results.But now-a-days everyone wants everything immediately - only some things don't function with a "click".


Mini Mehta


This blog of yours gives the correct picture of what fashion weeks in India have been reduced to. There is less of fashion and more of entertainment. Wonder how designers are doing business when there are no buyers? Entertainment is what people want in all walks of life even when it should be serious business.


Jay Ramrakhiani


So True... The purpose of holding a fashion day / week is all lost when it comes to serious buying.. Some stall owners even said that having a stall for visibility sakes was better than taking part in the fashion weeks.. Tut tut do i hear a glass break somewhere.. Cheerio..!


Nivedita Sharma


Wonderful meher


Ranjit R.


Very true about the gate-crashers. I wish the security was more stringent. They bring down the quality of the event.


Wendell Rodricks


Buyers? That's almost an alien word in fashion week shows, The are no new buyers, Fashion Weeks are a PR/Marketing hoax. Which is why this year I am takinng a break from this cabaret and doing a special Buyers showing in hotel rooms with a look book, a rack of clothes and serious buying.. It is cheaper, has less cameras and it works for us


Kareen Parwani


So true! The real sense of buying collections has gone for a toss in India. People don't even know why fashion weeks take place, they just come to watch celebrities. Also,with the number of fashion weeks, watching the same silhouettes and trends, it has become monotonous for buyers as well as businessmen.


Jasmeen G Dugal


Speaking of Fashion I would love to hsare a horrifying anecdote. So I'm attending a regional fashion week and I am supposed to give them milage by interviewing designers and talking about collections to watch out for. SUDDENLY their PR e-mails officially "no more stories! See you there!" I wonder why until I see her "breaking" interviews and news on her Facebook a/c while withholding information from media! Still reeling...


Anand G


Meher our fashion industry has yet to mature rather then float on hype. When this changes we will see serious fashion. Personally for me a fashion show is to exhibit designers fantasies and creativity and i would want my audience to focus on this rather then distract with the etcs in a ramp walk. Its only my view - correct me if i am wrong.


Jayshree


This is so true. Fashion weeks have become more of a gimmick nowadays than serious business.





REAL OR UNREEL?

MEHER CASTELINO | August 15, 2015  


You know I can't tell what is real and unreal these days.

Why are you saying that?

In all walks of life there is a thin line dividing the real from the unreal.

How is that possible?

Take reality shows for dancing, talent, singing, cooking modelling and beauty. They are all created with the TRPs in mind. There is nothing real about them.

Really, I thought they were showing a slice of real life.

Not at all, when you see a beauty contest on TV the audience cheering for the beauties is fake.

Really how do you know that?

They hold up cue cards with the words "Applause", "Clap", Cheer'' and the audience are rehearsed before the telecast to follow the instructions.

Really that is so false and we think it is all spontaneous!

In singing reality shows the same thing happens. The contestants are briefed when to cry, laugh or sing so that viewers are entertained with 'extras' besides singing.

Oh no and I thought they were really emoting.

Look at dance reality shows; they also add some 'masala' to make realty more 'unreel' at times

How do they do that?

A little 'accident' is added for the best dancer so that the mediocre one wins.

That is so unfair.

Don't get surprised even the news one sees or reads is quite unreal.

Now don't exaggerate!

It's not exaggeration, most of the news is paid for so it is unreal news isn't it?

That means what we are reading or seeing is far from real?

That's right. You are watching and seeing unreal things, which are engineered with the right amount of tempting touches.

I am really shocked to hear this.

Even cookery contests, which are supposed to be reality shows, are rehearsed with just the right parts shown to the viewers.

How sad for us, who follow them religiously.

Even realty shows that are termed as ''Live'' award events are totally ''unreel''.

Really how is it possible when they say it's ''Live''?

If they were 'Live' what is happening at the shows when we sit through dozens of advertisements during the break in the shows?

Oh yes I never thought about that.

Also when beauty, singing, dancing, talent contests are ''Live'' and viewers vote do we ever get to count the votes given?

No of course not. But we vote for our favourites.

That's foolish; you are wasting your money and the only people who are experiencing the 'realty' is the channel and the service providers who make money from your messages.

Oh no I am stunned and am not going to vote anymore.

Don't be stunned that's how the world is. Haven't you heard wise men say that this is the 'unreal' world' where it is only 'A' letter' which makes all the difference between the ''real and reel''?

Oh I suppose life is one ''unreel'' experience, which we have now got used to.

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Abhay Gupta


The most easy to follow , quick to read and grasp, practical and reader friendly format used by you is the winning point of your blog besides the topics chosen by you Meher. Compliments - will love to follow through your writings regulalrly.


Neelima Agrawal


"Yes that is what 'reality shows' are about. TRPs prove it is a successful model."


Air Cmde T.T.Job


"Most successful movies were about the unreal world because people are fed up of their dreary real life. So what is so bad if Television shows have taken a cue from movies?"


Ruby


Yes, it is all so disappointing. Nothing seems to be fair or true these days. I was just told that even Masterchef is rigged. But who cares anymore it is entertaining. So let us just take everything as it is and be amused when in doubt as there is nothing one can do about it. Even people we know are "acting" to impress.....


Hemant Trevedi


Absolutely True...& totally Unreal..!!


Jasmeen G Dugal


Life is certainly one "unreel" experience; a a recent awards function a journalist was awarded the same awards given to two senior editors for their contribution to the industry because ........... as it was announced he was the organiser's friend! And then of course there was vast social media and congratulations by the hoodwinked wellwishers when his pic appeared holding the trophy!


Wendell Rodricks


Nothing is real on reality shows. Period! And people who watch them are unreal stupid too


Kaumudi


Awesome Meher ... I dont know about the rest but you should definitely get an award for the best blog


Kaumudi


The new age form of voyeurism ....... personally reality shows are not my thing .... unless its about cooking i guess ..... all the people on these shows are just actors anyway ..... REEL BORING!!!!!


Pooja Kapoor


Hahahahaaa.. brilliant! Reality tv is the most fake of all!


Mona Shroff


I agree with you. Even the Beauty pagent participants are all plastic and have gone under the knife sometime or the other in their lives.I don't know where the world is going, but in today,s world it is all about marketing and publicity.


Pooja Samant


Ha.....Ha....:) This Real one...Meher ! Superb!


Mini Mehta


I loved your blog this time. Yes today everything in the world is unreal and more so in the media where everything has a price and if you pay the right amount you could be turned into royalty. What an unreel world. Sad


Anand G


Truth is that Ms Meher is 100% correct and there are no exceptions. Sad but true. Its money and business.





FLUFFY AWARD WINNERS

MEHER CASTELINO | August 1, 2015  


Do you know what is the most boring and irritating thing happening these days?

No what is it?

These numerous awards, which are coming out of the wood work fast and furious.

Yes you are so right about that.

The award categories are so pathetic; one wonders if the organisers know what they are doing.

You are so correct when you say this.

Decades ago there were just two important and popular awards and they were for beauty and films.

That's right and they were so popular that people looked forward to them annually.

Now there are awards for all kinds of things.

You can say that again.

They have awards for beauty, gadgets, cars, retailers, hair, makeup, brands, stores, labels, walking, talking, singing, laughing, dancing, eating, drinking, running, messaging, cooking, food, restaurants, snacks, selfies - where will all this end?

Very silly I think.

These awards are quite fluffy and fake most of the times and the categories selected are really embarrassing. Even the winners don't want to be associated with them.

Yes this is quite unbelievable.

Imagine the most global or international award for an actress who hasn't even sat in a plane or been abroad in her whole life.

How fake can that be?

Even in beauty contests the sub-awards are hilarious.

I have heard that and it is so funny

They give prizes for best costume, smile, teeth, eyes, walk, figure, nails, toes, fingers, lips, cheeks, ears, molars, eyebrows, lashes, nose, hair, skin, eyebrows, voice, cyber beauty, Facebook likes and any part of the body that is left out.

Oh no this is going too far.

At times publications institute awards or take up causes when their circulations are going down so that they get publicity and people will buy their issues if they make some noise.

How sad that means their content is so boring that they have to create a tamasha for the public to notice them.

Yes, that is exactly what is happening all the time. In the electronic media there is so much competition that each channel creates a dozen awards to grab the viewer's attention otherwise their TRPs will crash.

I have heard about this.

The awards are so bad that at times celebs have to be promised that they will win so that they will attend and if the results are by public votes and the choice is unanimous then a special award is added to keep the losers who are top stars happy.

Yes in films when they give the jury, critic or popular choice awards then you can be sure that it is one that has been added to the main list of awards to please the ones who did not win.

Very sad that is why awards have no meaning now and people don't even remember who won what, where and when.

I suppose at times it is more embarrassing to be a winner as one is just a name in the ocean of thousands of winners or pacified with a fluffy award, which no one wants to remember or hear about.

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Mini Mehta


You are quite right with this blog. There are so many award functions for the most stupid categories which make no sense. Magazines are the ones that are really getting boring. No one reads them so they have awards for the silliest things and take up social causes to make an impact.


Kevin Phillips


Hi Sweetie, Always interesting Meher Trust you are well and thriving Love ya


Sathya Saran


You hit it squarely on the head, Meher.


Wendell Rodricks


Do I get an award for being frank and fearless? Nope Because fashion and media these days don't want to hear the truth It is all about PR and PC (politically correct) crap


Wendell Rodricks


Fab article Meher Sharing tomorrow on social media


Pooja Samant


Excellent...! Every year Lots & Lots Award functions..reminds me this..!


Sunita Shanker


Absolutely.... I wonder what is wrong with these people... easy way to fame???


Neelima Agrawal


"You said it! Very relevant blog...like the name too 'Fluffy Awards'. Keep going Meher!"


Air Cmde T.T.Job


"PhDs can be purchased from Srilanka including by Indians. Thus awards can also be purchased ".

 

Ruby


I think everyone is suffering from lack of self worth hence the need to be recognized and continuously praised. Facebook is full of everyone posing etc., and one has to keep commenting on it. Even if you don't know them.I really feel sad that people spend so much time and energy in being acknowledged when they can use the same time to learn something new or enjoy being with genuine friends sans mobile ! After all it is your immediate and lifetime friends and family that truly count and will tell you the truth and get you back on track !






THE SECOND COMING

MEHER CASTELINO | July 15, 2015  


I really feel sorry for celebs like stars, producers, directors, models, politicians, singers, musicians.

Why what has happened?

When they don
't get any work or are out of circulation they feel depressed and have to make great efforts to get back into the limelight.

Yes, I suppose that is sad. When you have tasted fame it
's difficult to let it go.

The poor things try everything and anything to get noticed.

What do they do?

Well they are lucky since these days they have so many options to use so they can get back into the limelight.

Really, like what?

See, the most popular avenue is getting locked up in a house with assorted people for a TV reality show and then screaming at each other.

Oh I remember that way they are not only seen but also heard.

Then there is the other option if they can move gracefully.

What is it?

They can take part in a dance show. There are so many these days.

Yes there are dance shows for mothers, fathers, couples, single people, children and even senior citizens.

If neither of these is interesting for them then they can try out a travel programme.

How does that help?

Well firstly they get to travel free and get paid for it and all they do is say a few lines, which are written for them.

Oh that is very easy and good

Then there are some who feel that people would be interested in knowing about their personal life so they have TV shows like
"A Day in the Life of".

Oh now that is a little boring. Who wants to know about an out of work celeb and what they are doing.

The latest one is of course starting a blog, twitter account, Instagram and numerous other cyber events.

How does that help?

They post happenings in their lives and wait for comments and remarks and they try to be very controversial so that they can start some debates.

Oh that is really clever but is anyone interested in
"has been" celebs.

Another popular way to get noticed is buying cricket, tennis, badminton, boxing, weight lifting, football, kabaddi, carom, chess, volley ball, swimming and dancing teams and then becoming big promoters of sporting talent. This is considered a very noble gesture.

Wow I didn
't know sports had become so popular in our country?

Then there is another easy way to get publicity too.

What is that now?

Throw a big party, call all the celebs that are in the news and invite the media and make a lot of noise about what they are wearing, thinking, eating, and their opinions on current affairs.

Oh dear for that they will have to spend some money instead of making some.

You don
't know there are enough brands who want to get publicity by hook or by crook so they may sponsor the bash.

Really that sounds like an amazing happening. Who says the second coming is a sad and depressing event. It seems to be much better than the first one!

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Kaumudi


If I remember correctly there was some news on a certain actor, AR, that got his party sponsored at a Delhi nightclub which he owns...... Some celebrities, and one has to admire them, they have reinvented themselves with an alternative career like Interior Design, Authors, Culinary Arts etc. Of course their popularity doesn't hurt in this age and day and I kinda find it inspiring. There are some that are fighting hard and not giving up to make it. The ones that i truly mock are those who will do anything for publicity to make sure they are in the limelight or dating XYZ to be in the public eye....


Nichola


hahahah... how true!!


Air Cmde T.T.Job


Hemamalini has had a second coming with water purifiers. She is always on TV.


Somu


Hey don't forget all this late night tele shopping infomercials, some celebs are now selling pills, creams and all kinds of exercise contraptions.


Jasmeen G Dugal


How very true Meher! There is no fun left in watching a reality show, dance show or travel show because its all a huge publicity gimmick with paticipants who take part engineering the script in most cases


Pooja Samant


He....He....Hillarious....& extremely true....! Make sense.! Keep it up..!


Neelima Agrawal


Your blog is very informative, akin to the Dummy's Guide for Amateure Celebs. Way to go Meher!


Kareen Parwani


I haven't been reading a lot, but its a distinct subject you've thrown light on. Surely, people must gather themselves up and make an effort to make a difference in society. Not merely pass time with reality shows or TV soaps!


Ruby


I guess no-one thinks of improving the country's poor as something to do with their excess wealth and time.


Wendell Rodricks


At worst...they can join fashion and create a splash at a Fashion Week


Mini Mehta


I love your blog this time and it is such a great subject as well as very relevant in the current scenario. Every one is trying to make a comeback on the big screen or on TV or in the news. Being in the limelight is what people are longing for these days. Even children want to be in the news since they feel they will make big bucks. Publicity is the buzz word come what may. What a sad state of affairs. Modesty is a thing of the past.





FOREIGN STAMP

MEHER CASTELINO | July 01, 2015  


I always find something funny about the way Indians look at NRIs.

What do you mean?

In India the foreign stamp is very important for everything and everybody.

Yes, I've noticed that too.

Indians only love their designers when they go west. That is when they are treated like celebs in their own country.

No doubt about that.

Look at that model; she walks for Versace, Valentino, Jean Paul Gaultier, Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein and many foreign labels. She is fabulous, tall, dark and beautiful but no one looked at her when she was in India.

Yes I remember how the poor girl ran from designer to designer for auditions and was never selected by them.

Now that she is the 'Best in the West' Indian designers are running after her to open and close their shows?

That is so sad.

That author over there wrote great stuff in the country but no one read him till he settled aboard.

How crazy is that?

Now that his books are best sellers all over the world and he lives in Europe, the country wants to take the credit.

Really that is so pathetic

There are so many Indian stars that are very hot on the foreign films scene.

Yes I see them in all the TV serials and movies in Hollywood.

But nobody in Bollywood gave them a role till they went abroad.

That was really tragic.

Now directors and producers are running after them with film scripts.

This is a weird state of affairs.

Even in politics when Indians work abroad they are appointed as the right hand of presidents and prime ministers and they are given really responsible jobs.

Very true they do shine and are wined and dined when they come back to India.

Indian women are selected for top posts in the West and have even carved a niche for themselves as astronauts, scientists, corporate heads and even governors of states as well as many even run for elections.

Yes, I have heard but only after that their home country takes notice of them with honours and felicitations.

Even singers and musicians have to go abroad, get popular there and then the people back home will notice them and start buying their music.

This is the saddest story. No wonder all the talented people feel they have to go abroad if they want to succeed in their own country.

Did you know that Indian economists and scientists are very much in demand in the West and have made names for themselves but back home they were bogged down with Red Tape.

Now, I suppose they are honoured with all sorts of awards in India,

Yes, that is exactly what is happening. People want the foreign stamp on Indian people and products before they have the courage to accept them.

And to think the Indians did not want foreign rule.

They don't want foreign rule but they want foreign validation since they have no confidence in their abilities.


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Jasmeen G Dugal


It's true! Indians havent lost their fascination with the West despite our Independance. We have such stunning professional models but many designers settle for average overseas models just for being "gori". And yes even today in Punjab it is a must to send kids to study in canada or they have failed as parents!


Air Cmde T.T.Job


In these days of Nakli degrees, is it not possible to get nakli foreign endorsements? It could become a lucrative profession.


Mini Mehta


How right your blog is this time. Yes we still worship the foreign stamp but want to change foreign names of roads and cities. I love the diverse subjects you blog on they are all so relevant in our times


Ruby


Yes, this is sad but true. And I don't know if and when or if at all the Red Tape will disappear. Many go abroad as otherwise they would suffocate here with no recognition or even paid fairly for their performance. Hopefully things will change....


Prasad Bidapa


Always lovely to read you MC. P.





BIRTHDAY BUMPS

MEHER CASTELINO | June 15, 2015  


Why are you looking so worried and harassed any problem?

I have a very important family event to organise and I can't find the perfect location.

What is it?

The first birthday of my son, which I want to ensure is the most memorable function for him.

So what's so difficult about that? Invite some toddlers, have a cake, snacks, soft drinks. It's so easy.

Are you crazy? Do you want to ruin my name in society? Nowadays one doesn't just keep up with the local Joneses but with the Joneses of the world!

Oh I didn't know that is the scene now.

Today nobody, absolutely nobody, has a party like that for their kids. Even my driver celebrated his son's first birthday with a big bash at the ElephantaCaves.

Really that is so nice of him.

So now I have not only got to do better than that but beat all the Bollywood stars, socialites, billionaires in the world if I want to stay in the highest social circles.

So what are you going to do?

I was thinking of hiring a small island in the sea but that has already been done and I don't want to repeat it.

Then what will you do?

I was thinking of hiring Disney World for a day and have a party but it's so boring.

Yes it's quite an old location.

I was planning on blocking "The Strip" in Las Vegas for a day and turning it into a kiddy party zone, but parents want to come but leave their kids at home.

That is sad and not right at all.

I even wanted to rent a luxury liner in the sea far from crowds so that kids can enjoy themselves but all of them are booked for several years.

Oh no how unfortunate.

Of course I can always hire a plane, train or hotel but that has been done before.

You are right that is so mundane.

I even thought of hiring a zoo, a wild life sanctuary or a game reserve but parents were worried about the safety of their kids.

Yes, you have to be careful about that.

Of course to make it more thrilling I wanted to have item girls, Bollywood stars performing, Hollywood stars singing and royalty around the world attending; but coordinating all their dates was impossible by which time the birthday would be over.

You are so right. But why are you doing all this for the birthday of a one year old,he will probably sleep through the parties and functions and not even realise it?

Who said it is to celebrate my son's first birthday only. It is more important to tell the world who I am and what sort of person I am when it comes to wealth and status.

Oh I see, I thought birthday parties were about friends and good wishes but you are getting more birthday "bumps" organising one for your infant son than he will get!

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Neelima Agrawal


The 'Have It So Flaunt It' epidemic rages on as never before. The newbie tries hardest


Air Cmde T.T.Job


Sadly, the one year old kid will remember nothing of it.


Wendell Rodricks


Why just birthdays for kids? These days ANY family event becomes a social media circus. From birthdays, engagements, marriages deaths...if its not out there on social media, it just did not happen


Ruby


Yes, it is so so sad that this generation is not teaching values to their children but buying them expensive branded toys and clothes and having lavish parties. They themselves will have to outdo their own last party and for that they are willing to beg, borrow, steal which of course they think no-one knows.
Most of the children I see around are also so spoilt - they do not value public property, do not greet elders and are rather selfish and the parents DO NOT CORRECT THEM. I shudder to think of the generation after that.
Maybe everyone will be the same and so they will themselves not know the difference.
Instead the rich ones If they must have a party should have it at an orphanage or invite street children and let the rich spoilt ones own know the difference and teach them to assist, help and share.
Sometimes I feel every couple getting married should go through parenting classes, give an exam and then only should be allowed to have children.


Mini M


What a perfect blog you have written this time. Now it is fashion and an obsession for people to be one up on everybody in every way. People want to trumpet to the world how rich clever influential beautiful famous they are this gives their egos a great massage





SISTER ACT

MEHER CASTELINO | June 01, 2015  


I can't understand the media, they feature family members of stars, models, directors, when they have no achievements to their credit.

Really is that how hungry for news the media is today?

Yes, just see this item girl's sister is featured as a celeb in all the papers and she was a has-been mediocre actress before she got married and had children, so her achievements were nil then and now!

Oh dear no wonder real achievers are ignored if such people are honoured.

The only achievement of this wannabe is she wears fancy clothes and ensures that she poses with her sister for photographers of the press.

Sad very sad reflected glory never works.

Then there is this hot Bollywood star whose sister hasn't acted in a film for decades but is featured as a show stopper and style icon in fashion magazines and web sites.

Really that is so ridiculous.

If that is not enough, the sister of the programming head of a TV channel has her own lifestyle and cookery programme and she anchors it like a 5-year-old lisping through a recitation.

What is the electronic media coming to, it seems there is no standard worth talking about.

Of course there is the sister of this top Bollywood hunk whose movies have broken all box office records and she has become a top designer by dressing him.

She must be a qualified designer.

Not at all it's the brother's push and pull that has earned her the honours.

Oh so tragic. Where will it leave good designers who are qualified but have no celeb relatives to fall back on?

This top international model's sister has been trying to model even though she is nowhere like the famous sister so now she is trying for movie roles by giving the sister's reference.

That is really pushing one's luck at the expense of one's siblings.

Then there is this award winning author whose sister has been giving interviews on her life with a celeb ever since the new book was launched.

Now that is taking this pseudo fame too far.

Of course one must not forget this sister of a top selling singer who insists on singing duets, which can't be refused and it's ruining the singer's career.

Oh dear that is the height of sibling affection and a great sacrifice too.

Definitely, latching onto a successful sibling in the glamour business is a fashion these days for most wannabe celeb aspirants.

Yes I believe so. Loving your sisters is a great act of affection but allowing them to tag along and piggy back on one's fame will do nothing for this sister act of the celebs.

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Air Cmde T.T.Job


Fashion Industry has taken the cue from Politics and movies


Ruby


This seems to be in all walks of life, also in offices where relatives are hired in high places who do not know much about the work they do. Instead they should be guided about finding what they excel at and be trained in that. But I guess most of these people do not want to make any effort.


Neelima Agrawal


Guess when success arrives, sibling rivalry takes a back seat.


Wendell Rodricks


Forget about siblings, At this rate my new Great Dane puppy, Athena, will design my next collection and become a celeb.


Mini Mehta


Your blog this time is really very true. We have to read about siblings who have not done a thing to warrant publicity but they are splashed all over the place. A sad state of affairs as far as the media is concerned.


Jasmeen G Dugal


Very true. Someone from the industry mentioned last evening that talent scouts begin keeping a watch on celebs' siblings and offsprings from the moment they turn 16.


Sunaina Suneja


Sad commentary on what we Indians are becoming. Style without substance or rather Delusions of Style.








RED CARPET NEWBIE

MEHER CASTELINO | May 15, 2015  


I'm really excited I'm going to walk the Red Carpet for the first time at the Kannista Film Festival this month.

Really, which film are you promoting; I haven't seen you on screen for several years.

Oh I'm not promoting a film; I'm promoting a shampoo for a top international beauty brand.

A shampoo but this is not a hair show it's for the latest films that are produced around the world and the stars who are acting in them.

Oh you don't know anything about the Kannista Film Festival. It's where lipsticks, makeup, eyeshadows, shampoo, conditioners, concealers, lip-glosses are promoted. Films are only a small part of this film festival.

So what's so great about walking the Red Carpet at the Kannista Film Festival promoting a shampoo? You are just like a dumb mannequin not an actress.

That's where you are mistaken. I have to work really hard acting on the Red Carpet promoting the shampoo.

How hard can it be just walking down the Red Carpet? You do know how to walk I hope?

Yes, but so much planning goes into that walk.

Like what?

I have to wear the perfect outstanding eye-catching gown or no photographer will click my picture. So I have been planning my wardrobe for months.

Okay then what?

After that the best jewellery has to be matched and it has to be genuine and amazing so that people will gasp with wonder when they see it.

You will probably borrow the jewellery so what's so difficult about that?

Not at all, then I must get the best shoes, which are not only comfortable but stylish as it will affect my walk. I have to glide graceful down the Red Carpet and look almost ethereal.

Fine that is not difficult.

Then I must learn how to pose at the exact spots as I walk down the Red Carpet. There are particular marked places where I have to stop and pose otherwise I won't get good photos. So I have to remember those spots and memorise them.

That should be easy how many spots are there?

Oh there are four spots but I have to give a different pose and a different angle of my face and body and then swing my hair to the correct side for the paparazzi.

This sounds easy to me.

It's not easy. This has to be done in perfect timing or I'll miss my cue and nobody will photograph me.

So how long does that walk take down the Red Carpet?

It is a whole 60-second walk and I am so worried I won't remember when to stop, pose and walk. It is stressing me out.

Well you have acted in films and have learnt your dialogue so this should be easy to remember.

Oh don't you know my movies have always had a few lines for me to memorise and even those were dubbed!

In that case thank goodness you are promoting a shampoo and not a movie.

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Ruby


I guess everyone wants to earn big money without really having to do anything. The order of the day seems to be to wear expensive stuff and strut around. It may impress a few people for some time but not for long. I wish people would really study and do something concrete. We do have a lot of brains here even in the slums, and the wrong ones seem to be getting the wrong opportunities to hoodwink people.
Hope you received our invite for the Founders' Day lecture which is today and hope you can make it.


Kareen


Haha, The only thing I feel like saying is, So True!
Your blogs make us think about everything from a broader perspective! :)


Kaumudi


It just struck me .... instead of aspiring actresses saying that "i want to work on a film that gets to be screened at Cannes and walk the red carpet for it" we will probably have them saying " i want to be a shampoo pusher so that i can walk the red carpet on Cannes" .......... Perish the thought!


Ranjit Rodricks


Super blog post Meher. Died laughing


Kaumudi


Meher I love this blog! It is so sad that your Sonam's, Katrina's & Aishwarya are what we see & remember at Cannes but what about those actresses whose movies are being showcased there. The worst part is that i dont remember those actresses because NO ONE is writing about them! It is not 'newsworthy' unless we have our 'shampoo pushers' their .... Not legit at all!


Mini M


This blog of yours is so timely. Every year we have to read about these out of work Bollywood stars whose movies flop but behave as if they are award winners at international film festivals by walking the Red Carpet for some cosmetic brand and think it is a great achievement. How low can the level and score for achievements get?


Durba Nag


Love your blog posts !
Keep up your great work!


Bhavika Morparia


This is excellent and so so clever.
I wanted to say this on social media, but didn't know how.
I'm going to share this amazing hilarious interview :)


Sreejith Jeevan


Hahahah! Good one meher! Since we all know who this person is, its fun to read this :)


Neelima Agrawal


No biz like Red Carpet biz! Think of all those who benefit from this exercise - designers of dress, shoes, jewelry, cosmetic brand, PR company, starlet, choreographers, photographers, media, not counting airline and hotel etc. Probably left out a few..."


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


Is she blonde by any chance?


Wendell Rodricks


After all this drama the critics on Style Police will rip apart the gown and diss her out


Dipika Israni


haha this is brilliant!!! and so apt!





WEAK CELEBRATIONS

MEHER CASTELINO | May 01, 2015  


You know everyone is in a celebratory mood these days.

Really what are they celebrating?

Just like people celebrate their birthdays and anniversaries, in the glamour business too there are celebrations.

What kind of celebrations are there in the glamour business?

Designers have started celebrating the number of years, months, weeks and days they are in business.

Oh I didn't know that!

There are designers who have been in business for 25 years so they celebrate it.

Of course that is some achievement so I am not surprised.

But there are designers who are celebrating 15, 10, 5 and even one year in the business.

I suppose that is also worth celebrating since many designers appear and disappear after one collection.

Then there are films that celebrate how many weeks they have lasted at the box office.

That is also great since most films last for a few days.

Of course models and film stars rarely like to celebrate how many years they have been in the business.

Why is that, they should, if they are successful.

Are you crazy, then everyone will know how old they are?

I see I didn't realise that!

There are fashion stores, which are celebrating the number of years they have been in business.

That is also quite an achievement since fashion stores are known to open and shut in a blink of an eye.

Then there are foreign brands who celebrate their anniversaries in the country from the day they arrived.

That is so fabulous. Most foreign brands can't last in our market for more than a few months, so it is definitely something to celebrate.

But the funniest celebrations are by fashion weeks.

What are fashion weeks celebrating?

See there are so many fashion weeks taking place in the country in every nook and corner; they have to make some noise about themselves or no one will notice them.

Oh I suppose you are right about that.

So there are fashion weeks that are celebrating centuries as well as golden and silver anniversaries.

That is indeed a great achievement.

Some are celebrating china, crystal, tin, wood and even paper anniversaries.

What that you are talking about?

Well you know 100 years is a century, then golden is 50, silver is 25, so china is 20, crystal is 15, tin is 10, wood is 5 and paper is one year.

Is that how anniversaries are celebrated?

Of course it is an achievement to celebrate the first anniversary of a fashion week when many are cancelled before they see the light of day.

This is sounding really desperate when one has to celebrate the first anniversary of a fashion week.

Some are even celebrating the number of designers they have or the number of shows?

Now this is going a bit too far I think.

Well you can say that some of them are really weak celebrations but then who cares; in the fashion business they want to get publicity at all cost.

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Ruby


I am really amused at the wood, paper and tin celebrations. In the end every day will be a celebration what with Earth Day and Water Day and Mothers' Day. On mother actually commented that every day should be Mother's Day and she is not wrong !
Unfortunately, no-one seems to be highlighting, remembering and mourning, (or very few remember) soldiers who lost their lives and that young boy who died at the hands of terrorists - I often think and pray for his soul and courage for his parents.
Those who are working are doing it quietly and the appreciation comes automatically. One does not have to blow one's own trumpet. Empty vessels really make the most noise!


Kareen Parwani


It is so much fun reading your blog maam . Loved it


Neha Asthana


Anand G - I am impressed with this Gossip. I just pray that this is mere gossip. ;)
Meher ma'am, Cannot get further right. This is such a marketing gimmick. Designers are only inclined in the media and publication. Sadly no work on Business of Fashion.
Hope this will change.


Neha Asthana


Your quirky msgs are always so much fun to read and a reality check on all going around us. What a prospective! Kudos keep writing in.


Neelima


'Great blog Meher, No novelty left in the fashion weeks, only thing worth celebrating is the passage of time, or a random number'


Mehernavaz


Hilarious as usual Meher, really enjoyed reading as always


Kaumudi


I wish these people would 'celebrate' their employees instead and give them their salary/ raises or bonuses instead......


AnandG


Did you hear the gossip that fashion industry plans to build a fashion temple that will have multiple fashion God`s and to get in a designer would need highest of influence.


Mini M


The glamour business wants to celebrate any two bit event when they don't have any concrete reason to get publicity. These celebrations are ways of getting into the media by any way. They are all so hollow and fake.





FAUX CAUSES

MEHER CASTELINO | Apr 15, 2015  


Why are you looking so sad? How is your magazine doing?

I am depressed because as an editor of a fashion magazine I have no work. From fashion, the policy has changed to promoting social causes.

Yours is a fashion magazine so you should be handling fashion subjects.

We should, but circulation was sinking with so much competition from foreign publications so to stay in the news, the magazine is pushing the cause of empowering female tigers who are not getting a good deal from the male of the species.

How will that help the circulation of a fashion magazine?

We did a female tigers spread, then a short film with celebs talking about the cause. There were major debates in the media.

Then you should be happy people are noticing your magazine.

Yes, but I don't have any work as an editor. I am totally side-lined unless I stand in group photos and declare I am the editor.

That is sad. Hello there how is your designing getting on?

I have nearly stopped making seasonal collections. Now I only design for a cause.

You too are going the Cause way?

I have to ensure I am in the news all the time since the competition is cut throat in the fashion business.

I know that but you can design great collections.

I do but there has to be a cause behind it so my latest is gender equality between the male and female lions. You know how these Kings of the Jungles boss over their females who do all the work.

But what have lions got to do with fashion.

Listen a designer must get a unique cause to get great publicity.

I suppose so. Hi, there how are your films doing now that you are a top star?

I have to keep ahead of the others in the race by promoting unusual causes.

I thought stars promote their upcoming films not causes?

Whenever I have a film due for release I grab a cause. I get publicity indirectly for the movie and people love me for my social awareness.

Which cause are you endorsing now since your film is due for release?

I am championing the cause for kangaroos. Should they be allowed to carry their young ones in their pouch or not, jump from mate to mate, have fun in the wilderness even at a young age?

Oh that is good but will it help your movie?

With all the media attention, people will remember to see my movie.

Hello, are you directing new movies?

I've made a couple of movies, which have been understood by a handful of people. So now I am promoting causes.

How will that help you as a director of feature films?

I make a film on a cause, which becomes controversial and talked about so the public realise I am still around, since my feature films take years to materialise.

So what cause have you filmed right now?

I have got all the female species of animals together and shown how they bond when they have to face a common enemy.

That sounds like a great film that animal lovers will adore.

I have learnt that when business is bad, one's career is moving south, get a great cause even if it is a faux one and you will be noticed by hook or by crook.

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B S Bhatnagar


Like all the earlier blogs you had sent me, the latest one is interesting, impressive and thoroughly enjoyable. Congratulations. Do keep writing and letting us enjoy your blogs.


Kaumudi


Meher very well put. that is just the way it is ... cant say anymore since i do work in PR ...lol


Neelima


"It is in 'vogue' to push a cause, even if the 'cause' doesn't make sense to anybody. It is their choice."


Ruby


Had a good laugh. As they say, you can fool some of the people some of the time but ultimately the customer catches up with what is going on.


Rasna Behl


Even jewelry designers have joined the Charity band-wagon! Publicity at no cost! Get celebs to showcase for free and voila you have photo- op for page 3 ready!!


AnandG


Meher i am at loss of words to comment but i feel the acute need to understand from God how he creates genius like Meher from whom flow a never ending out of the box thought process.


Wendell Rodricks


This sounds like a sari brand who will use all means to stay in the limelight. From women's cancer to SRK's wife. All mumbo jumbo to sell a hideous embroidered sari. Indian weavers be damned. Marketing zindabad


Air Cmd T.T.Job


"Do not forget to show it to the animals too"


Jasmeen G Dugal


Lovely article and absolutely true! I do remember quite a few shows dedicated to animal protection this season... also calendars!


Ranjit R.


So true, dear Meher :)


Mini M


This one is hilarious and so true when people want to jump on to causes to give themselves publicity just like top Bollywood stars directors, magazines and Celebs are doing these days when their publicity quotient is going down. Loved it


Anuj


every ones excuses are well explained.





FINALLY A FINALE

MEHER CASTELINO | Apr 01, 2015  


Do you know what is the most important and difficult thing to arrange in a fashion week?

No, what is it? I thought the designers are the most important persons in a fashion week.

Yes they are, but there is something else, which can make or break a fashion week.

What is that?

It is the finale.

Well it is the last show but what is so great about it?

You don't understand, the location of the finale is more important than the finale designer's collection.

That is really sad considering designers would do anything to get a finale.

We thought of some amazing locations but there were so many hitches that kept getting in the way.

Really like what?

We wanted to have the finale at the base camp of the Himalayas.

That is really amazing then what happened?

Getting the invitees there was not feasible with many not in the peak of health.

Oh I see then what did you do?

We thought of having the finale on one of the national highways they would have made amazing never ending ramps.

So what happened?

It would have caused a traffic jam so we did not get permission.

Very bad you could have had a real fashion break through with that concept.

Then we thought of having the finale in one of the city's biggest swimming pools but that did not work out as many of the models could not swim.

That would have been a really good one as it would have created a fashion splash in the media.

We thought of a game sanctuary, which would be very earthy and amongst nature but animal lovers objected.

Oh that is sad; it would have been a really wild finale.

Then we thought of having it on the beaches but the sea life and coastal waters lovers objected.

Oh that is really unfortunate; it would have been a breezy finale.

Then we thought of building a ramp through the wilderness amongst towering trees but the nature lovers objected.

So sad it would have been a really high level finale.

Then we thought of having it in the middle of the sea, far from the maddening crowds.

So what happened?

Most of the models got very sea sick.

Oh very sad the finale would have surely created waves. So what are you planning now?

Oh we had the most extraordinary finale ever arranged in the history of fashion in the whole world.

What was it?

We had it in cyber space.

What how did you do that?

Very simple, we shot all the clothes on hangers, then digitally added models, ramp, backdrop, lights, music and we had an amazing finale, which we uploaded on our site and millions have seen it.

Wow, congrats, this must have been really an out of this world finale experience for many fashion lovers.

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Ruby


I feel when one's products are not good enough they try to put the accent on the surroundings or other things. Why make it so expensive? Anyway they may have taken the designs from others and that would be so easy to put in cyber space with a few changes here and there. Very clever indeed !


Kareen


Really loved your blog maam, refreshed memories of our LFW experience.
Loads of love


Ruman Baig


I loved the blog post mam. Thank you mam for the opportunity it was a great experience.


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


Long live the cyber world. Next would be getting married this way.


Neelima Agrawal


"You are right. Online Fashion Weeks with live streaming is here to stay. Maximum outreach with minimum cost."


iKarmik


How about staging one inside the Mumbai metro. Or at the airport...afterall it's a 'runway' right? Lolol


Prasad Bidapa


Too funny Mehr! This is a real Roast!


Arunima


This is hilarious.SO true.


Dipika Israni


Love the Blog!! :)


Nilesh


I love your blog, it's fun reading ur blog. Keep giving these amazing words to read.


Jasmeen G Dugal


That's so true Meher! Personally I loved the AIFW finale where 25 designers showcased two garments each and it was at the venue wth no frills.


Payal Jain


Im a huge fan of your blog personally. Love
every post on it :)


MINI M


WOW this time you have mixed facts with humour and the result is a very honest funny look at the fashion business which is turning into a tamasha business with more drama and less of good saleable affordable fashion. Looking forward to your next hard hitting but very entertaining insight on the glamour business


Ranjit Rodricks


That's awesome Meher. I literally rolled over in laughter. And attached are a few inspirations from my fave old fashion comic :))


Nivedita Sharma


Thats a great piece


Caroline


FABULOUS!!! So brilliant - you make me smile and laugh out loud every time I read you latest observations


Wendell Rodricks


Grand finales have become a grand joke of theatrics. It's all about the off site, the drama, the stupid set, lights, sound. Let's hope to see a grand finale when then clothes become grand finale worthy


Kaumudi


Nicely Done... Lets not forget the showstopper. No Celebrity Showstopper means No Coverage ......





TOO BIG FOR THEIR BOOTS

MEHER CASTELINO | Mar 16, 2015  


Why do all of you look so irritated?

You would be too, if you had to deal with the fashion world.

Why what has happened?

Designers are like lost lambs, they don't seem to know what is expected of them when they join the fashion industry.

Really how is that?

I am a retailer and these designers are playing hard to get just because they have done a few shows. Their artificial attitude and arrogance is sickening.

Really, but I thought they would be running after retailers for orders since you are their bread and butter?

Nothing like that, in fact some designers are advised not to answer calls just so people think they are busy or they think they have arrived.

How silly they will lose orders.

I am a buyer and my problem with designers is even worse.

What's your grouse now?

Ask designers to give a price and order 50 pieces of a style and they want me to buy the whole collection off the ramp.

Really but don't they take orders?

Not at all it's the 30 pieces of the show that they want me to buy and then they tell the world they were sold out at the fashion week.

Goodness they are no better than the corner store selling single pieces.

What is more irritating is when we ask them to send their collection note.

Why what's so irritating about that?

Most of the designers in the business can't write a few words about their collection.

Really aren't they educated?

Yes in designing, but that's where they think their knowledge should end. Getting collection details from them is worse than getting water from a stone.

Oh dear wonder how they do business?

On the other hand, some will send a poem, a love story or some esoteric lines instead of a collection note.

That sounds as if they are entering a literary contest?

I am a customer and it is a nightmare dealing with fashion designers for bridal wear.

Why they are all experts in designing bridal trousseaux?

They may be but for my wedding I was about to go to the wedding Mandal and the designer was stitching the zipper on my clothes while I was wearing the outfit. The excuse was they were heavily booked so had no time even though I had ordered the outfit six months before my wedding date.

This is shocking how disorganised are they?

Designers are only interested in seeing themselves in print with celebs and Bollywood stars who may wear their clothes on the Red Carpet.

Really, is that their vision of being a designer and the idea of being in the fashion industry?

I am a fashion week organiser and my problems with designers are unbelievable. Some have not got their collections ready even three days before the week starts.

This is crazy what do they show on the ramp?

They rehash clothes from their old collections and add one or two new pieces.

But that is fooling the public and buyers?

Who cares in the fashion business today everybody is too big for their boots.

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Neelima Agrawal


True, True, True..on all counts. Your blog has all parties covered. Fashion designer, please speak up in your defense.


Pooja Kapoor


Another good one! Sharp and to the point!


Neha Asthana


Dear Ma'am,
Reading Big For Their Boots is like narrating our story.
Thank you for truly being a great journalist and now a blogger. Really feel obliged.
I always look forward to your blogs. It's fun to read them. Honest & witty!
Keep us informed.


Hemant Trevedi


Rah Rah..! She does it again... & tells it just like it is! I love the truth serum you're on Meher!


Neha


Oh God!
I was living by the words you wrote. Couldn't stop laughing at first and thinking how shallow can it get. Very sad but the fake will wash away.
Keep writing it is brilliant to read through. More power to you Ma'am.
Hats off to your pen, this is so true.


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


They should just stick to designing big boots


Ruby


It is a pity if the designers are really behaving this way. Every customer and client or agent is important and should be treated with respect. There could be many reasons why a person has not achieved a certain status inspite of being brilliant. Business ethics do not seem to be in vogue but that is the only thing that brings success I feel. The higher you go the harder you fall and when one does there is no-one to pick you up. Respecting business deals and keeping one's word builds a reputation. But everyone today seem too big for their boots with no foresight – a pity.


Dev


Really enjoyed reading the article. Can't agree more how so many designers are not connected to the reality and living in a bubble.


Imam Siddique


Thanks a tonne for sharing another wonderful blog. More power to your pen ...Or I phone/ I pad.


Wendell Rodricks


Not just too big for their boots. Too big for the pea size brains in their heads


Anavila


hahahaha !!
enjoyed reading it Meher , inspite of being a designer :)


Priti Doshi


Good one Meher!


Caroline


My Dear Meher
How fabulous ! As always I really enjoy your acerbic wit and needle sharp (no pun intended) observations about the fashion industry.
I look forward to seeing you at Lakme - Will probably be coming either Thursday afternoon or Friday morning.


Jasmeen G Dugal


I agree with you Meher and I have been noticing this behaviour among the mid-level designers who have done three-four odd seasons... particularly in Mumbai. This season, for example, when I politely e-mailed back a designer who knows me for years that I was not covering previews she 'forgot' my name and wrote back "Thanks Jasmeet". The other designer from whose collections I have been buying printed tunics took an order for three garments and when they didnt turn up, said "I changed my mind! I'm famous! Buy it from the stores I retail to!" Well 'too bigs for the boots' does come to mind!


Mini M


This time your blog is very true and hits the nail on the head. The Indian fashion designers behalf like they are the cat's whiskers and even better than international ones. Ask them for their swatch card or production details and they look blank because they are nothing but glorified darzis although it would be an insult to the darzis who are great and humble.


AnandG


In bolly there is famous casting couch - in fashion can i call its attitude couch... visibility and hype sells...


Kaumudi


NAILED IT MEHER!!!!!!!





FASHION JUNGLE SAFARI

MEHER CASTELINO | Mar 02, 2015  


Why do all of you look so irritated?

You would be too, if you had to deal with the fashion world.

Why what has happened?

Designers are like lost lambs, they don't seem to know what is expected of them when they join the fashion industry.

Really how is that?

I am a retailer and these designers are playing hard to get just because they have done a few shows. Their artificial attitude and arrogance is sickening.

Really, but I thought they would be running after retailers for orders since you are their bread and butter?

Nothing like that, in fact some designers are advised not to answer calls just so people think they are busy or they think they have arrived.

How silly they will lose orders.

I am a buyer and my problem with designers is even worse.

What's your grouse now?

Ask designers to give a price and order 50 pieces of a style and they want me to buy the whole collection off the ramp.

Really but don't they take orders?

Not at all it's the 30 pieces of the show that they want me to buy and then they tell the world they were sold out at the fashion week.

Goodness they are no better than the corner store selling single pieces.

What is more irritating is when we ask them to send their collection note.

Why what's so irritating about that?

Most of the designers in the business can't write a few words about their collection.

Really aren't they educated?

Yes in designing, but that's where they think their knowledge should end. Getting collection details from them is worse than getting water from a stone.

Oh dear wonder how they do business?

On the other hand, some will send a poem, a love story or some esoteric lines instead of a collection note.

That sounds as if they are entering a literary contest?

I am a customer and it is a nightmare dealing with fashion designers for bridal wear.

Why they are all experts in designing bridal trousseaux?

They may be but for my wedding I was about to go to the wedding Mandal and the designer was stitching the zipper on my clothes while I was wearing the outfit. The excuse was they were heavily booked so had no time even though I had ordered the outfit six months before my wedding date.

This is shocking how disorganised are they?

Designers are only interested in seeing themselves in print with celebs and Bollywood stars who may wear their clothes on the Red Carpet.

Really, is that their vision of being a designer and the idea of being in the fashion industry?

I am a fashion week organiser and my problems with designers are unbelievable. Some have not got their collections ready even three days before the week starts.

This is crazy what do they show on the ramp?

They rehash clothes from their old collections and add one or two new pieces.

But that is fooling the public and buyers?

Who cares in the fashion business today everybody is too big for their boots.

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Kaumudi Naithani


Lovely post...honestly I love fashion Meher but the fashion weeks in india is something while I may have attended and to a certain degree enjoyed, I don't really aspire to be there as fashion is lost in all the hullaboo,,,,lol


Neelima


You bet, it is a jungle out there - with the carnivores in pole position. And what category do those that populate the Media benches come under? It is a very interesting species too.


Jasmeen G Dugal


So right Meher! It gives "business of fashion" a new spin. I have seen "style icons" send their secretaries or in some cases relatives to lure designers for freebies off the ramp with the bait that it would get fabulous publicity! Its a jungle out there!


Wendell Rodricks


What? No blogger animals in the zoo?


Ruby


I think this applies to everything. The moment anyone sees success they think it is easy and want to jump on the bandwagon and then be disappointed. They want shot cuts and instant gratification and when that does not happen they are at a loss to know why. Ego is punctured but the point is missed. Point being that one must learn the trade from the bottom and reach the top with experience and know-how. Try telling that... But Thank God all are not like that.


AnandG


Fashion Jungle Safari is a great term you have coined Meher. The ideas you come up with are so original.


Kaumudi


Fashion Weeks are a great case study on its own ..... FW & your article reminds me of the movie Mean Girls .... xo


Mini M


Oh this blog of yours is really great. I had such a laugh but you are not wrong you have matched the people in the fashion business correctly with the animal world. You really think up unusual but appropriate topics and then present them in a humorous manner. Looking forward to the next one.


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


"Meher,now you got a glimpse of two legged animals. They are not limited to animals."


Imam Siddique


Thanks Meher, loved it & shared the same of FB this morning.
You inspire me. Reading you blog is a highlight each time that I anxiously look forward to.





CLOG THE BLOGS

MEHER CASTELINO | Feb 15, 2015  


How is your work at the pharmacy getting on now that you are a qualified pharmacist?

Oh I gave that up and now I am doing what I always dreamt of doing.

What is that?

I am a photographic model.

A model, but you weigh 200 kgs, are short and far from model proportions. Oh I get it you are modelling for plus sizes!

Not at all, I model my own creations.

But where do you model?

I have my own blog. I wear different bizarre clothes and take lots of selfies and immediately upload on my blog, which is about the latest trends according to my knowledge of fashion.

But is anyone looking at it or following you?

Who cares as long as I see myself on-line and my pictures go viral.

I see, and just for that you gave up your reliable job as a pharmacist.

Of course, I never got a chance to pose in different clothes in front of the camera when I was working.

Oh I suppose if you are happy then it's okay.

Do you know my friend who is a dentist has started blogging regularly?

Really on what subject, she is a dentist?

Obviously about fashion and lifestyle, which are the hottest subjects on-line? She always wanted to see her work in print and now she is blogging every minute, so she has got her heart's desire.

Yes, now everyone and anyone who can string three words together becomes a blogger on fashion.

But the best perks about being a blogger is the importance one gets at events.

Really, I thought the print and electronic press were the ones that ruled the media world.

Forget it that is history. Now it is the age of the blogger, Twitter Pinterest and Instagram. We are the communicators of the 21st century.

I see isn't everyone and sundry a blogger, tweeting, on Instagram or Pinterest these days. The cyber world is overcrowded and a mess.

Not at all, bloggers, Tweeters and Instagram fanatics love seeing themselves in the cyber world. We also get wined and dined since we can upload news as it is happening.

Yes I agree it is really fast compared to newspapers, magazines and TV channels that take days, weeks and months to report.

We have seminars around the world and I upload my pictures nearly every few minutes on my blog, Instagram, Twitter and when I see them on Pinterest, you don't know what a high I get.

Well I suppose if you are happy it does not matter if you clog the blog world. You are at least sure of having one follower.

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Aarti gupta


I loveeeeeee ur blogs . So honest and witty . You are blessed with the pen and you write so well . I doubt anyone can do it better then you . You the best blogger I have come across . A genuine blogger must say .


Arunima


Love your blog on stylekandy. Please don't shoot me.Shoot the bloggers!hahaa
On a serious note, I was SO happy to read that one.Please keep calling a spade a spade and keep them coming :)
See you at Lakme!


Neelima Agrawal


Well said. But how much more exciting to be able to find a platform as a blogger or on FB, to do all those impossible things full time and actually find morons who 'follow' and 'like'."


Pooja Kapoor


Lol! Another brilliant one


Ruby


It is quite obvious that this is the instant gratification generation. Besides only money and fame seems to be important to everyone. Genuinely qualified people are doing good but they don't get the name and fame and so if they are not content then they have to resort to trickery to get famous. Educated and mature people can see through but young, impressionable and those who have very busy parents or no guidance are the ones who will get trapped with false blogs. Someone could even pretend to be a doctor and give wrong advice. What happens then? It is scary. The world is getting crazier and faster for what I do not know.


Riddhi


This is cute ;-)
Thank you and best of luck, as always.


Kaumudi


ha ha ha ha !!!! I know of one fashion blogger who semi-fits the description and all she does at events is crib and complain...And trust me she has NO knowledge of fashion lol .....


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


Leader is someone with with a following- even if it is one.


Wendell Rodricks


Jokes aside bloggers get a lot of money and free products. They get invited on holidays and enjoy many freebies


Parthip Thyagarajan


Good one Meher-- thanks for sharing :-). As always it was nice chatting with at Fashion Week though briefly, and look forward to meeting you at the next Fashion Week if not earlier :-)


Jasmeen G Dugal


HAHAAHAHA!!!! This reminds me of several people who are in PR, media and other occupations but insist on posing with "p3" for a false high. It's high time the bubble burst. Till then, he or she has one follower for sure ;-)


AnandG


"NO COMMENT" - Carrer options Designer, Stylist, Bloggers its the trend....


Mini M


These bloggers are now dime a dozen and they have nothing new to say. They are coming out of the wood work and every corner and lamp post. They lift pictures from the web and paste them on their blog and give comments in pathetic English. Earlier every second person was a model now it is blogger. All the latent writers who are not accepted by publications become bloggers and promote themselves.





DFW

MEHER CASTELINO | Feb 02, 2015  


Do you know organising a fashion week is the most nerve wrecking and stressful business? Till the very end we are on edge whether it will happen or not.

Why what's so difficult about it. People are organising fashion weeks in cities, towns, villages, suburbs, mohlas, hill stations, beaches and even roads and lanes. It's the easiest thing in the world.

That's what you think, but try getting designers to participate in them - they are all prima donnas.

I thought designers are just waiting for fashion weeks so they can carry a collection from one fashion week to another and don't have to unpack their bags.

Rubbish, designers have to be wined, dined, pampered, cajoled and at times even begged to participate.

Oh I didn't know that.

After they agree they drop out at the last minute for some flimsy reason.

Oh that is sad.

Then models are another difficult lot.

Why I thought at least they would be easy since the competition is so keen.

Oh no models are also prima donnas and want the best clothes, want to open and close the shows and ask for insane amounts for their ten minute walk.

That is not right.

Then getting showstoppers and Bollywood stars is another major headache.

Why is that?

The fashion week's reputation depends on how many super stars and society 'A' listers come on the ramp. But they all cost crores of rupees.

But I thought it was a fashion week so clothes are important not showstoppers.

Forget it, also the amount of publicity a fashion week gets will make or break it in future.

Really how is that?

If the media does not attend in large numbers and doesn't write then the week is a flop.

But I thought it's the designers who are important.

Yes they are but the buyers also have to be invited and they are really a fussy lot.

Why is that? Buyers like to be wined and dined.

They do but some even want free trips for their families, friends and lovers. Then getting the correct venue is important.

Yes of course that is correct.

One can't have it outdoors since fashion weeks always start hours late and there is a time limit outdoors.

You are right.

Indoors is very small, since fashion weeks have many gate-crashers when the number of media suddenly increases for big shows.

How is that possible you accredit them in advance?

Yes but for grand finales and top designer shows everybody turns into media - grandmothers, mothers, fathers, uncles, aunts, cousins.

That is so sad.

So we have created a new fashion week category. We already have pret, bridal, couture, casual, sports, resort, holiday, kids, ladies, men's, lingerie, beach wear, now we have a new version.

What do you have?

Well we have a website, hold a press conference, announce a list of designers, models and buyers and wait for DFW to take place.

What is DFW?

Doubtful Fashion Week of course.

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Mini M


Your blog this time shows the condition of the fashion business and what it has degenerated into. Fashion weeks are now a money making racket with no sign of buyers but just after parties which are highlighted more than the designers' collections.
Where all this will lead the Indian fashion industry to only time will tell. Fashion weeks abroad are closing down and this will happen here too very soon if the business of fashion is ignored and only Bollywood stars and glamour is highlighted.


Hemant Trevedi


Brilliant..!!


Ruby


I guess this happens when one thing is repeatedly done to death. But people do not seem to realize that everyone cannot be at every event and support everything. Even the prosperous designers must be having limitations time and finance wise. And frankly one loses interest too or the quality suffers if one cannot devote the time necessary for doing a particular job properly. And I believe that goes for everything.


Shruti Tomar


Hahah! So true and hilariously so. Leave the nitty gritties to the celebs!


Wendell Rodricks


Fashion Weeks without business are no fashion weeks for me


Vaishali Shadangule


Super!


Neelima


Tut tut... such a decline. From 2-day fashion weeks to DFW now, leave alone the OFW (online fashion week)."


Kaumudi


Ha ha ha ha ...... was just having this conversation with a friend ..... Its the biggest con of the decade in India!!!!


Aniket Satam


Not even the brightest Ghost designers can change a Brand idenyity, which is based on creating Halloween Clothes or lets say Couture.Bhoothnath returns!
Fashion is getting WEAKER because of so many Fashion WEEKS..If we combine all this weeks, we can easily have atleast 6 months of Fashion months.


AnandG


anyway does help advertise fashion...only if such bylane events can be named differently...


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


"The only thing one can depend on is DFW"


Jasmeen G Dugal


HAHAAHAHAHHAAH! Ilove it !!!! And you are soo right!!!!!! One never knows rill it happens if it's actually happening and as per schedule! Celebrities of course will come with their entourage and their PR will tell the medi exactly where to "surprise" them with "impromptu" pictures!! Designers and models ... hmmmmm .... soem are the most professional I've met and others .. well "drama queen" does ring a bell. And territorial? I wanted to interview someone and a veteran in the industry gave me a wrong number! O well!!





GHOST DESIGNER

MEHER CASTELINO | Jan 15, 2015  


How is your work as a designer getting on now that you have graduated at the top of your class and won several awards?

Fabulous, I am designing for the top names in the business.

Really, who are your buyers and retailers?

Oh I'm not designing my collections for buyers. I am the ghost designer for numerous celebrities who have moved into the fashion business when they have no work.

What do you mean ghost designer?

I am like a ghost writer. You know sports persons, movie stars, celebrities, designers, and millionaires, publish their autobiographies, which are written by ghost writers who don't get a by-line. Just like that I am a ghost designer.

So who do you design for?

Well I just finished collections for well-known writers, producers and directors who claim to have designed collections for well-known brands but actually it is my work.

Oh I see then what else?

Two months ago I completed a line for a singer who launched her label online.

Really that is nice.

Then next month I am designing a sexy range for an item girl who is in-between dance numbers. She will be creating her own web site for it.

Wow you are busy.

After that I will be very busy with a top actress who is launching her formal wear line, which I will put together.

Amazing, you are so talented.

Then I have to make a bridal jewellery collection for a socialite who is moving into the accessory business so that she keeps herself busy.

My goodness you are really branching out into other avenues.

Yes, I am also in discussions with a TV star and a sports champion who are launching their sari collections for formal wear.

Superb, I am sure these will be all fabulous because you are so talented.

I am also looking at a handbag collection, which I will design for a politician's wife who wants to branch out and turn herself into a brand since her children have all grown up.

Superb you are talented.

I am even designing a collection for an untrained stylist-cum-fashion designer who needs creative help.

Goodness you are now a fashion designer's designer besides designing garments, jewellery, handbags what more are you going to dabble in?

Oh the sky is the limit when one is not worried about seeing one's name on the label. For me the final compensation is very important and these people are willing to pay, since they don't have any knowledge of fashion but just pretty faces with empty heads.

You are so lucky you have such creativity and intelligence, which is taking you places!

Yes I am really glad I don't have to worry about selling collections, setting up workshops, studios, dealing with labour, running after stores for payments. I just design and leave all the nitty gritties to the celebrities.

Wow, just like a "ghost" you are everywhere, doing everything you ever wanted to do and no one can say "Boo" to you.

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Ruby


Totally crazy. I guess this happens at all levels all the time. Assistants do the work and the bosses get the credit. Without the support of the wives the husbands would not be half as successful yet they are not having a clue about anything at home. Some colleagues also manipulate the recognition for themselves. It is called smart working and selling oneself - something we were not taught. We were taught business ethics and not tripping people which seems to be happening without a qualm and no sleepless nights. I guess we just have to take it in our stride and move on as long as things are clean between our conscience and our God.


Cedric


It is good to see that you are doing well and that your days are busy from morning to night.
Hope to see you when I am down later this year


Air Comd T.T.Job


The most sensible designer you have portrayed in your blog.


Saaz Aggarwal


I just loved this one … well written, amusing – and quite profound! Incidentally, there was a time when I styled myself as a 'ghost writer' and would always find it funny when people gave me horrified looks as if I'd introduced myself as a bootlegger J


Neelima Agrawal


Great blog. Please share contact of 'ghost', for a Ms Deep Pockets who wants to launch her fashion label...Your blog gave her the idea.. ;).


Jasmeen G Dugal


Very true. So many designers are "ghost designing" for celebrities and even wanabe socialites who are clueless. So many are now getting into interiors and even "designing" bathrooms! There's nowhere the designer touch has not reached!


Caroline Young


Superb!!!
Happy New Year Meher
I just love your latest observation & your Kafka take on the "ghost designer" !


Wendell Rodricks


A good option to make money and not be bothered with a brand, fashion weeks and sustaining oneself in a competitive market. But dealing with celebs must be no cakewalk catwalk either.


Priti Doshi


That's true
I know a couple of ghost designers too!!


Kaumudi


Ha ha ha ha .... Now they should also get ghost buyers .... to buy this stuff!


Raj Pillai


This ghost has not approached me yet !!! Am I chopped liver??
This "ghost" has not approached me!! Boo !!


Jattinn Kochhar


each to their own. cant waste any more energy on these types. i guess its a win win situation for both the parties.afterall life is what make of it..( the choices one makes)some have awareness and a lot dont..


Mini M


Wow I just love your latest blog because it hits the bull's eye. One reads about all these so called celebs designing collections when they don't know their scissor from the measuring tape. They are fooling the public with new publicity stunts when they have no work but want to be in the limelight. All they know is how to pose for cameras and ensure their names are in the headlines by hook or by crook.


AnandG


The upside is GOD is smiling and maybe trying to find himself a GHOST DESIGNER...soon GOD's label will be launched...





ADDICTIVE PARTY ANIMAL

MEHER CASTELINO | Jan 01, 2015  


I am really exhausted after the festive season every year. I need a holiday.

You are exhausted doing what? You are jobless for so many years!

I have the most difficult profession, which you are not aware of.

What is it?

I am an addictive party animal.

What is that and since when has this profession and animal category emerged?

It is the most competitive profession in the country, haven't you heard?

No please tell me about it.

I go to every party, which is held in the country 24 x 7! It is the most strenuous profession since there are thousands of people who want to get invited to parties all over the country.

What's strenuous, you go to a party eat, drink and come home.

You are so wrong. First I have to ensure I am invited to every party in the country. At times there are many parties in 24 hours so I have to plan my day accordingly.

What's difficult about that?

If there are five parties I have to plan my wardrobe. I can't wear the same outfit and be photographed at every party in it. I have to carry five outfits, which are well ironed in my car and then change in my car according to the theme of the party.

So what is so stressful about that?

I attend every party and must know how to make polite conversation with everybody.

So you chat with people.

Yes, but I have to be up to date in my information. If it's a fashion week after party I must know everything about fashion.

That's easy, read fashion magazines.

At a filmy party I must know about movies and stars.

That's also easy.

At corporate party I must know about finance, business and shares. At a political party I must know, which politician is the flavour of the month.

That is but natural.

At a society happening I must know all the gossip, which is important. I have to work really hard to be very well informed about all subjects so I have to spend time reading and surfing the net.

Okay that is fine but how does all this partying help you in making a living?

I am the most popular person since I am featured on Page 3 and the media loves me because I give the most sensational quotable statements at every party, which in turn allows me to be on every party list?

I don't see any big achievement in that!

You will realise it if you become a party animal. It is one of the most addictive professions in the world.

How is it addictive?

It is a profession where you are showered with free drinks at every party so I am totally addicted to it.

Okay now you make sense - free drinks for life, is definitely a great addictive profession for any animal.

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Ruby


I cannot help laughing. To think that some people are freebees and don't even know it. What an absolute waste of time and not a single true friend. If going to parties is work than going to a real party or catching up with friends becomes totally meaningless. What do they do for relaxation ? I guess consider it irrelevant and shocking ? Never stress free !


Jasmeen G Dugal


I agree Meher and I sometimes wonder how these people get up each morning to work (if at all) for a half day and spend the rest of the day planning what to wear... which party (or parties) to attend and which photographer to bribe to appear on "page 3". Add to it free bubbly and dinner every night (sometimes lunch too!) with the added advntage that the common man thinks they are "celebrities" since they are in the dailies each day! It must be a really tough life to always be on your toes for that next invite or plot how to get in and through whom :-)


Neelima


Hail the party animal. Now I know who these online fashion retail sites are targeting!


Wendell Rodricks


These kind of party animals are life's loosers


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


Animals normally do not have to pay for what they drink".


Mini M


This is a good subject for your blog and really enjoyed reading it. Yes there are people who will fight to get invited to parties so that they can tell the world how popular they are and that people want to meet them. They are the ones with really low self esteem which has to be pumped up artificially so that they feel great about themselves.


Kaumudi


And some get paid to attend parties so that it gets featured in page 3 .... love it!





FLOP HITS

MEHER CASTELINO | Dec 15, 2014  


Do you know in this day and age anything or anybody can be a hit?

What do you mean?

I mean that even a flop star, film, designer or place can be turned into a hit if one follows the correct procedure.

What are you talking about, please explain.

Okay take a flop star for instance, the best way to turn into a hit is to get daddy dear to finance a film.

Okay so how does that help?

Then daddy dear will pump in money to promote it, get it publicised in the media and voila the flop star is given a hit label.

But the movie has to become a hit.

That is also taken care of.

How is that done?

All the movies that make crores of rupees have you ever counted the money?

No, but the trade pundits say so.

And you believe it?

Well yes.

Always check the figures and then believe - is my motto.

Oh I see.

Then there maybe flop designers, who will keep declaring all their collections, are sold out. They say it so many times that very soon even they and everyone around them start believing it as truth; though no one has ever seen anybody wearing their creations, except the persons who get them free.

Oh no is that what is happening in the fashion business too?

Yes of course. Then there are the out of work flop models who suddenly become designers or movie stars.

Really is this what happens?

Yes you suddenly see them all over the country launching collections or saying they are flooded with movie offers.

Oh that is really crazy.

Do you know flop singers too are moving into the glamour business and even flop musicians?

It seems to be very easy for flops to turn into hits.

Yes, suddenly flop stars turn into style icons and talk about trends and international designers as if they are discussing the price of vegetables.

How do they manage this?

Either they hire stylists who give them a crash course in fashion or sisters/brothers dress them and turn them into self-proclaimed fashion icons and take credit as designers.

That's quite nice I think.

Well yes, I suppose but what is really sad is that the real "Hits" are side-lined because these "Flops" try to and at times tend to overshadow them with their deep pockets and fake publicity.

Well then there is only one solution to that.

What's that?

The only answer to this is that the road to success and hits seems to be through flops now, so get going what are you waiting for? Become a "Flop" and you will be on your way to turning into a "Hit".

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Pooja Samant


Well written...How True it is...We do keep on seeing this..It;s New Market Strategy to make Flop a Hit ..!


Kaumudi


It is amazing how being a FLOP is a HIT today with consumers .....


Prasad Bidapa


Too funny Meher! You are so right!


Jayshree


Hehehe.. I like :-). Fashion week that lasts for only a day! We may soon even have one for half a day.


AnandG


Meher a school that would do a course for flops would run well...with a long waiting list...admission criteria based on spending power...


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


This is called FLIP FLOP.


Neelima


'As per the prophesy, "All reasoning will go to dogs and the Mediocre will be hailed as GREAT"


Jasmeen G Dugal


so true meher. I can think of a bollywood 'star' who decided to become a 'rockstar'.. models who become actors with two-scene roles.. actors who sashay down the ramp .. and former bartenders who write a book on "page3 people" they know nothing about. sigh!


Mini M


A great blog once again. I marvel at the way you get ideas and show the different quirks of fashion in an interesting and humorous manner. You are so right so many Flops are given more publicity which they don't deserve compared to the people who are real hits.





FAULTY WEEKS

MEHER CASTELINO | Dec 01, 2014  


Do you know my life as a teacher is becoming more and more difficult?



Why, what is happening is your salary not going up?

No that is fine.

Then what is the problem?

Do you know which subject in school is getting tough to teach?

No which one?

It is arithmetic - the subject has changed so much

Why what can be tough about arithmetic. It hasn't changed since it was discovered. It's straight forward as always, 2+2=4 or 5+4=9 and so on.

That was simple in the good old days. Now numbers are shrinking.

What do you mean numbers are shrinking?

Okay here's an example. Tell me how many days are there in a week?

Now don't be silly everyone knows a week has seven days. Even a child will tell you that.

Well you are living in the past; now the week does not have seven days anymore!

Says who?

Says the fashion industry and today's children are so smart and into fashion they know everything that is going on, so they are arguing about the number of days in a week with me!

I don't understand what has fashion got to do with the number of days in a week.

Everything - there are big fashion weeks in Delhi and Mumbai but they last for five days even though they are called "weeks".

Oh dear this is confusing

Then there are fashion weeks that last for three days.

Really, why is that, can't they call them by any other name. This will puzzle students and the people.

Of course it is puzzling people and students. Then there are fashion weekends.

Oh now that's easy, a weekend means two days.

You are so wrong again - a fashion weekend means three days.

Oh no why is that?

Don't ask it seems that the words "fashion" and "weeks" are so interconnected to each other that there is confusion in numbers.

I see.

Then there are fashion weeks for only two days.

Please stop you are driving me crazy with these numbers.

I can't help it if the fashion business is making my life miserable as a teacher. Now I can't explain a week to the children that makes sense.

Yes I pity you, it must be so difficult.

That is not all there was even a fashion week recently, which lasted for only a day!

You must be joking.

I am not, so now tell me, how do I explain to the children how many days there are in a week?

I can understand your problem, but you can explain that like the rupee is shrinking so it's shrinking times in everything with faulty weeks. And tell them not to follow fashion it is as unpredictable as the weather. Who knows in future a fashion week may last for ten days or more then you will really have to rework your teaching method.

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Jasmeen G Dugal


Meher I do believe fashion week and fashion weekend would have to be redefined as 5- and 3- day events with no other variations like one-day or five-day weeks! It's confusing for those outside the industry as it is :-(


AnandG


When every 3rd person organizes a fashion week and every 5th town wants to share the glamor and every 4th designer wants to be part of a fashion show with no specific objective in mind i am sure teachers will refuse even considering maths as a subject.... with money flowing world is changing fast...for good and bad for beautiful and ugly... the change is happening...so Meher professionals like you will need to continue teaching so some sensibility is kept alive..


Kaumudi


I shudder to think how the future generations will turn out ... makes you think....


Anurag Batra


Great meher


Mini M


Your blog again has hit the nail on the head. This is the New Age Maths which children will have to learn thanks to the fashion business which seems to be changing not only our way of dressing but also our knowledge of numbers and dates. Two words that should be banned are "fashion" and "weeks" from the industry. They are a joke.


Air Cmde T.T.Job


It is like the bakers dozen.


Neelima


I was waiting for this one. You are absolutely like the Amul ads - they are funny and always comment on the latest scenario - brilliant.
'Good observation Meher. The dyslexia is an epidemic. Or perhaps it was meant to be 'Fashion Weak'. Ah those spellings!!"


Ruby


I really don't know what to say, accept that in future maybe it will be fashion hours...who knows !
I wonder what the generation after will do, but that would be this generation's problem, ours will be obsolete and unique ! Pity we won't be in the museums since our values and ways are outdated !


Caroline


I love your latest blog about Fashion Weeks - you echo my thoughts completely - I have often wondered the same for a long time!





HIDDEN DESIRES

MEHER CASTELINO | Nov 17, 2014  


Do you know that many people may be doing one job but deep down may have a hidden desire to do something else?

Yes I know that

But now those hidden desires or latent talents are coming to the surface thanks to you know what?

No what is it?

It is social media, the web, e-commerce sites and brands, which are blitzing the Indian scene. They have helped people to achieve their desires.

Oh really is that so. How is it done?

Haven't you seen how everyone and sundry has turned into expert photographers thanks to the big selfie epidemic and making them rush to display their talents?

Oh yes, I saw that.

Of course, the photographs may be mediocre and at times really terrible but social media "likes" turn them into masterpieces.

Yes I have noticed that

Then there is the desire to criticise everything from fashion to movies, cuisine, hospitality, politics and every single subject one can think of on social media, which has created critiques.

Oh that is really crazy; there are blogs and comments on every subject in the world.

Designers and stylists who always wanted to become models are seen on-line posing in their creations or some other brands or on YouTube making short films.

Oh dear that is going a little far.

Have you noticed how models and even authors suddenly want to start their labels?

Yes that is silly but at times only they are wearing their creations.

Now nearly every Bollywood star or director wants to design a collection of garments and see their name on the label thanks to the e-commerce sites who have to keep up with the competition.

It must be tough for the sites to stay in business so I suppose they have to keep reinventing themselves with garments from stars.

Celebs even want to turn into artists and hold exhibitions of their doodles and scribbles, which are bought by their family members but they get publicity since they are now holding the brush.

Oh no this is getting out of control

Even celeb children who can just string a few sentences turn into authors, thanks to the push from their parents and great promotions.

You are so correct everybody is bringing their hidden talents to surface whether they are good or bad.

As if that is not enough then siblings turn into stylists for films when their brothers or sisters are acting and then declare proudly that they always knew they were creative.

That seems like pushing the family into the limelight

Even wives of Bollywood stars have turned into producers and daughters into movie directors.

Oh no do they know anything about the business or is it just a case of getting media hype?

With the social media even a 'nobody' is considered talented.

So what are you planning to do? Do you have any hidden desires you are a back stage helper.

Yes, I always wanted to fly a Boeing and I am going to make that hidden desire of mine take 'wing' shortly.

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Ruby


On one hand it is a good platform to start something where there is real talent and knowledge and expense plays a part but on the other hand we are flooded with photos of really trivial things and have to comment. This I find really silly and wonder how friends and colleagues have time to do such silly things and flood our boxes. Also people one does not know seem to be intruding. What a waste of time and friendship !


Kaumudi


Meher ..... HIT the NAIL on the HEAD!!!!!!


G. K. Kuruvila


I have wanting to write a book. I have always put it off as it requires too much effort. Meher you hit the nail on the head.


AnandG


Meher - its hard to comment on your blogs - you expose ground realities as an intellectual - add to this comments would be read by genius minds - so to comment and hide my mediocrity is my desire i need to fulfill?


Neelima Agrawal


Great blog...as always.
Zuckerberg probably never realized his FB initiative would unleash the hidden narcissist, and his unrealistic ambitions, lurking within every below average Joe. Already a part of a thesis.."


Air Cmde T.T.Job


I have always wanted to be an actor. The reason the desire has not taken wings is because I cannot act


Sathya Saran


Acerbic,and right on, as always.!


Jasmeen G Dugal


So true Meher! Bang on :-)


Wendell Rodricks


I had a desire to become a designer. But it was a lot of hard work. Nowadays, one can just do tha with money and PR


Anuj Sharma


its always fun to read your blog. you write strong things with simple humor. thank you


Mini M


You have selected a perfect subject for your blog this time. All types of people have suddenly decided to show their mediocre talent on the web and it is really a pain to read the rubbish they write and the talents they say they have. Superb as always. Waiting for more





PR RELEASE

MEHER CASTELINO | Nov 01, 2014  


You look very tired these days, what's wrong, how is the PR business going?

It's so hectic. I work 24 x 7, through the year.

Why is that? PR is an organised business with fixed hours.

Not anymore. I have designers and Bollywood stars and both are demanding.

That's great you have glamorous clients so what's wrong?

Well earlier designers wanted press releases to be sent after their shows. But now it is different.

How different is it?

Now there is a pre-show release, which is followed by one release during fittings, a couple of releases before the show, a Red Carpet release, interviews with the designer, some releases after the show, then releases on celebs who wear the designer's clothes at events.

That's a lot of releases.

Then I have to dream up releases about the designers' hobbies, style, love life, latest trends, home decor, love for the parents, friends, party hopping, socialising. I have to keep an eagle eye on the designers and watch every move and turn it into releases.

Now that must be really tough but with movie stars it must be easy. They are already well known.

Not easy at all. A month before the movie is released the promotions drive me crazy.

What do you have to do?

Again follow the star all over the country and even abroad, get photos printed in different designer clothes before the movie is released.

Why so much publicity before the movie is out?

Well if the movie flops at least the star has already got mileage from it.

Oh I see.

Then in between movies when stars are jobless I have to work harder.

Now what do you have to publicise.

Have to keep them in the news and in the public eye, so have to get them invited to fashion shows and photographed in the front row either in the country or abroad.

Oh dear that is hard.

Ensure that they are invited to open stores, walk as showstoppers, attend rich society weddings, dance at New Year Eve shows and appear at the right charity events.

My goodness that is tough.

There are problems also at times.

What problems?

If there is a romantic breakup, problem with producers/directors/ designers then I have to present the star as an angel and the aggrieved party.

Oh that must be difficult.

If the star makes a faux pas, has a fight with colleagues, then have to immediately rectify with a denial release.

That is so sad.

The latest PR exercise is to get foreign brands in the country to invite stars to their annual shows abroad and dress them in the brand's creations.

How does it help the brand or the star?

It's a great ego boost for the star and for the brand hopefully the sales will go up in the country so many releases have to be sent.

I see so with such a tough job how do you ever relax.

I'm planning to release myself from all this and either become a designer or a star and hire a PR to send out releases about me.

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Neelima Agrawal


You highlight well the plight of the PR companies. Tough job!


Piroj Wadia


LOL!!!


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


This is all about moving up from hitching your wagon to the stars to becoming a star


Ruby


It is really sad that everyone has to have someone to trumpet their achievements or non-achievements to get known instead of just getting on with the job. They even pay the newspapers to publish their tomtomming. In any case the ones working quietly and doing a good job somehow do get noticed, maybe too late or maybe too little...


Mirabilis


Hahhaha... This is really sweet and funny.


Sunaina Suneja


funny! lots of truth in it, i bet.


Wendell Rodricks


Exactly why I don't have a PR person. It's like selling your soul and showing a lousy collection.
Better to do a good collection that sells on its own steam. Who needs daily appearances on media instead of rapid selling clothes. Well...some designers sadly do. And a few manage to do both PR and good clothes. Hats off to them for their energy to walk both lanes


Roop


so true meher...most 'stars' are created, managed and presented by these amazingly resilient lot... a thankless job at most times...


Kaumudi


Trust me you need to be in PR to understand the stress levels. You get yelled at by bosses, clients & journalists.... Everyone expects you to perform miracles .... It is a thankless profession ....


Meha


Oh Meher..you are bang-on. Its really tough and tougher for PRs. Probably its the character of this industry where everything has the potential to be hyped as news.


AnandG


Meher your thoughts are so much out of the box - to the point - one just needs to also read between the lines to understand the hypocrisy that you are bringing out...Thnks Meher your blogs are eye openers...


Jasmeen G Dugal


Yes Meher and especially so during a film release and promotion or in our case fashion week. It is due to a lot of hard work by the PR person or team that everything flows smoothly in terms of communication which the media at times takes for granted. Thank you for bringing them into the spotlight where they deserve to be.


Mini M


You have picked a very interesting topic for your blog this time and it is absolutely right. These poor PR people run round trying to get their celebs into the media even when they are not worth the publicity or the effort.
This one too was a great read and very humorous as always. Loved it.


Aniket


Maine PR kiya! Story of our lives....Honestly Hilarious account of the Publicity Circus.





MISSING MODESTY

MEHER CASTELINO | Oct 15, 2014  


Do you know there are many new words being added to the English language by some dictionaries?

Yes I've heard about this

Words like Selfie, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram have become so popular they are used hundreds of times by nearly everybody globally, every day.

Really I didn't know that!

But there are some words that are going to get deleted very soon I think.

Which words are those?

A word like "modesty" it has no use and no meaning any longer these days.

Why are you saying that?

Just see how the social media has turned everyone into humble braggers.

How is that?

People now indirectly brag about things and this is done all the time on various social sites.

Really is that so?

People brag, but in a subtle manner about the food they eat, the people they meet, the things they get, the clothes they wear, the products they have won, the gifts they get, the places they visit, their children's achievements - the list is endless.

Oh no this is terrible.

Parents even encourage their children to brag and if they are too small then the parents brag on their behalf or ensure that children are exposed to social media sites where they can display their one-upmanship.

I see "modesty" seems to be so passe now.

Yes it is almost non-existent. Designers brag about their collections being sold out, stars about their movies (but humbly call it promotions) and directors about their awards.

It seems to have become a world of braggers.

All this is because there is a new popular word that has come into the limelight and into everyone's lives

What is that?

The word is "like" and everyone can't do without it and are fighting to acquire it. They must have it every minute of the day or at least several times a day if possible.

What is so wonderful about the word "like"?

You don't understand everything revolves around the word "like". It validates everything for people. The number of "likes" on social media gives a new high, which gives way to bragging which brings in more "likes".

This is a vicious cycle that is going round and round.

Well it's the circle of life of another kind. You brag because you want to be liked and the more you are liked you brag.

Where has modesty gone? It was considered a virtue at one time now it is practically dead and considered a major defect. There is no humility too these days.

What did you say "humility", is that a new word was it in the dictionary before?

Of course what's wrong with you "modest and humble" were great words that people felt proud to be associated when used as adjectives to describe them!

Well I still love them when they describe me at events where I am the chief guest.

Oh stop that, you humble bragger!!!

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Charles P Hall


It is a good topic Meher!


Hemant


Absolutely brilliant Meher!
The word which is certainly NOT in people's mental make-up anymore (forget Dictionaries), is most definitely "Humility".
Amazing how people live life like that, without bothering about having a clear conscience.


Rustom Ratnagar


In the days of civility,
people with ability,
had an air of humility,
and a sense of modesty.
Today, with what little they know and nothing more,
bragging is the new amore.
Modesty is sadly missing,
but its still worth reminiscing.

Jasmeen G Dugal


Very true Meher! Social media is just another word for "show off" these days rather than networking or genuinely staying in touch with friends and family's lives! Just an hour back a PR agency owner posted a picture of a large hamper he got as a gift hinting i guess for others to follow suit :O someone even commented on the publicity gimmick by the brand :O


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


Modesty has been replaced by MODIsty


Mini M


How correct you are this time also. People are so full of themselves that they cannot stop preening on social media and waiting for their 'chamchas' to send them 'likes' They dig out old photos and post them when they don't have anything intelligent to say. They want to be in the limelight by hook or by crook. They are a sad lot of people who don't have any self confidence and have to keep getting validation from outsiders


Nupur Kanoi


Thanks for keeping us hooked. Cheers!


Neelima Agrawal


love this blog - you slay them perfectly
"You nailed the 'humble bragger'. But that is exactly what FakeBook is about - pretending'


AnandG


Humble Bragger is the apt phrase - lets not forget times have changed and earth still revolving...


Priti Doshi


True.....


Vipin Sharma


Hi Meher, on that note, i am going to 'LIKE' this blog :)


Jahnabee


Meher, I totally 'LIKE' this piece. Keep them coming :)


Kaumudi


Many are using their modest bragging as a step up in their careers.....


Pooja Samant


It's so candid..so True...
Touched my heart..
I mean it Meher...! Bravo...!


Hemant


Absolutely brilliant Meher!
The word which is certainly NOT in people's mental make-up anymore (forget Dictionaries), is most definitely "Humility".
Amazing how people live life like that, without bothering about having a clear conscience.


Anuj Sharma


yes. modesty is long gone meher. thank you for the blog


RETAIL RAGE

MEHER CASTELINO | Oct 01, 2014  


I am sick and tired of the retailers in the fashion business in the country.

Why what is wrong you have been in the business for some time.

Yes, I have been but there is no change in the way the retailers do business.

What is happening tell me?

Well first of all it is all consignment and no outright buying so it is difficult to survive.

Yes I am sure you want cash in your hand.

They criticise the garments or not respond to the calls.

That is not nice.

The staff is so rude at most top fashion houses, they behave as if they are the owners and talk badly.

That doesn't speak well of a top fashion house.

Then there are retailers who lose the garments and say they don't know what happened to them.

Really oh no!

There are retailers of course who take months to pay even though they have got the money in cash from the buyers.

Why are they doing this?

There are retailers who wear the outfits from my collections for big media events and want to keep them for free.

Really what nonsense!

Some retailers don't pick up the phone when we call for payments.

That is so very very unprofessional.

When I bump into them at fashion events they don't recognise me even though my outfits are hanging on their store racks.

That is so bad mannered of them.

Some even dare me to complain to the press when I want my payment and they make excuses.

Really then what did you do?

I put it on a social site and got lots of comments and "likes", which means that retailer is a chronic defaulter.

That was very clever of you.

The scariest thing is when collections are taken and then returned after a few weeks saying they are not selling.

That is sad for you.

No you don't understand they copy many of my designs and then return the collections and sell the copies at a cheaper price.

My goodness you should take them to court.

I can't since they will say that I copied from them.

Now you are in a real fix. What do you do when that happens?

Nothing I just stop selling at that store.

That's good so where are you selling these days?

I have opened my own store at home, which is just one outlet but at least I don't have to worry about rude retailers, staff, copies and not getting paid.

You are very clever to do that and then what are your future plans.

I am planning to open a retail outlet and stock other designers as well as my collection. Now that I know the nitty-gritty of the business I will be good at it.

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Jayshree


Very very insightful. Guess it`s a two way street though.


Rustom Ratnagar


If I were a sage,
I would gauge,
your Blog titled " Retail Rage ",
to be the finest of this age.
And I also envisage,
that on every page, it will become THE RAGE.


Ruby


Hope this guy does not do the same after all the complaints ! Our country is totally lacking in ethics ! It seems to be the "in" thing. And it is not just in fashion it seems to be in every day life - however, it does come as a shock if someone still is ethical and one feels at that one moment that there is still hope !


Neelima


No one has such a clear insight into the woes of the fashion industry. Bravo. 'Some priceless info here about the shenanigans of the retailer. The fashion designer sure gets short changed every which way.


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


While in Rome, do as the Romans do.


Joan


These are great blogs Meher!
I shall get down to reading them all. You are just so 'spot on' on the couple of blogs that I just glanced through.


Wendell Rodricks


Moral of the story. Do what I did in 1995 and stop consignment. Or open your own store


Diana


Thnx Meher... #loveit


Jasmeen G Dugal


It's a two-edged sword. I had heard a lot about this. Designers complain all the time but if one investigates and then confronts those very designers they do admit to getting the payments albeit a little (or a lot) later than expected.


AnandG


expecting the world to change???
- surviving n winning needs to to focused upon and a strategy evolved to this goal can only walk one to success.
a 35 year story that happened in Chicago comes to my mind - a bank wld lend money only to certain origin people while the poor suffered forced to sell their real estates cheap.
a wise guy from the community called a meeting and planned that all week 3 hours before bank opens they wld line up to open new accounts or transact business. each day 600 people wld open or deposit or withdraw or close ... all very orderly legal that cops could do nothing nor could bank...
this left no real public the opportunity to enter bank or do business......
one week latter the deprived community started receiving their loans etc...


RP


too funny !!


Mini M


This is an interesting blog. I have heard stories about retailers not playing fair with designers but it is a sad situation since designers are at times to blame also. The whole business of fashion needs to be revamped in India.





SOCIAL SICKNESS

MEHER CASTELINO | Sept 15, 2014  


There is a new epidemic raging in the country and worldwide now.

Is it an outbreak of dengue, malaria, cholera or typhoid since the rains are receding?

Something much worse, and it's happening throughout the year and striking everyone from one-year-old toddlers to 100-year-old people.

Don't keep me in suspense, so I can take some precautions before it strikes me.

There is no medicine available globally for it.

Please tell me I am now stressed about it.

It is social sickness and doctors have no cure for it.

What is social sickness?

It is social media sickness, which is contagious on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Orkut, blogging and on all kinds of online sites.

Why is it so scary and a sickness?

People can't do without these social media sites, it's an addiction. A friend sleeps with his tablet and every time he turns, he quickly posts it on the social site. That gadget has become a part of his body and life and his parents are worried.

That is so silly.

This student has to post every few minutes how much he has studied and where he has studied.

How boring, who wants to read that.

Suddenly the whole world has expert photographers taking selfies and uploading them every minute.

What a waste of time and energy.

People's innermost narcissistic desires have also suddenly surfaced. They want to see themselves on various sites where surfers click "like". This makes their day. There are weird on-line challenges for charity which are a rage.

But I thought charity should be done anonymously.

Not any more, now it's charity with 'selfies' only, so the world knows how much people care.

Really that sounds like an exhibitionist.

I've even heard that a one-year-old toddler has been uploading selfies daily showing the progress of his first tooth.

Now this is going too far.

A sad thing is a friend of mine had 5000 friends on social media but on her birthday didn't get a single wish. She is being treated for acute depression in a hospital. Doctors have recommended she must have a few humans as friends, instead of thousands of cyber buddies.

That is sad.

Another one has stiff hands after using the touch phone 24 x 7 posting on sites.

How tragic.

Another has her tablet on 24 x 7 posting and counting the "like" on her page. One day she didn't get any, so she fainted from shock and has stopped speaking.

That is really bad.

The sad thing is that this sickness can strike any part of the body at any time without any warning.

So what's the remedy for all this?

Well actually only one.

What is that?

A major power breakdown for a few days will help; so that all computers, smart phones, tablets, net books and laptops cannot be charged. There will be withdrawal symptoms, but there will be a slowdown in social sickness for a while at least.

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Ruby


This blog is just superb! I was thinking that maybe I am out of place as exactly this is happening. One goes out dining and there is a picture, does something else there is a picture and people are actually commenting on it ! And I am thinking why is my time being wasted ? I am not interested in all this nonsense. I have friends to whom I want to tell things and not the whole world.
I know of girls who have no other hobbies but to upload latest photos. And I want to say, "get a life lady! There is so much more in the real world ! " But to say that would mean I am outdated living in the 19th century !
So now I am feeling very happy and ok that I don't need to comment on every silly thing posted on facebook ! I prefer reading a good book to the face book !


Diana


Hello Meher... Indeed, it was beautiful to be able to catch up with you! Loved it!
Your article about social media is very true and also very funny... it is a kind of disease and toxic independence that unfortunately I have too. But it is a good way of self promotion or promotion of my blog... so it is an necessary evil. It's for sure getting a little bit out of hand. I agree on that.


Imam Siddique


THANKS LOVE HAVE TAGGED YOU IN A POST ON FB


Kaumudi


A sickness indeed .... And i know so many so suffer from this condition .... lol


Asha Baxi


This sickness has become a planetery epidemic!
On an optimestic note like every trend becomes uncool and fades away lets hope this one too will.


Pooja Samant


It was fantastic...So aptly written...It;s unfortunately so true...
People do not want to talk-share even a smile which cots nothing...But posting 100's of similes threwout the day on FB..or Twitter...!
Love your style of writing !


Nivedita Saboo


What wonderful and relevant blogs you think of and put into apt words !!!
I am truly a fan :) your blogs always put reality in the right perspective!
Keep smiling ... Keep shining ...Keep writing !


Jasmeen G Dugal


I so agree!! A major power breakdown for a few days where all computers, smart phones, tablets, net books and laptops cannot be charged will lead to a nation of clueless zombies. But on a serious note it is an addiction. And perhaps voyeuristic glee about what the others are up to? Narcissism yes -- as also the need to post even a sandwich on food groups!! We need to consciously set aside some "me time" for dinner with the family, watching films without the need to check the phone every five minutes.. and yeah God help those who post traffic news while driving!


G. K. Kuruvila


Brilliant Meher. Luck that most of our generation still prefers human interaction.


AnandG


Indeed this is an addiction - but its the future - shredder to think what the growing up generation will
grow upto .....


Wendell Rodricks


Ha ha. If it is not on social media...it just did not happen


Bomy Elavia


As usual brilliant Meher. A very accute observation of the growing addiction to smartphones and a total disconnect with real life touch and feel living. I enjoyed the article but am sad for a generation that sees no life beyond social media.
The honest naked truth about the fashion industry, well observed and written. Where are the original designers given an opportunity???


Air Com T.T.Job


There is a simple name for this sickness- NERDISM


Neelima Agrawal


'Ha ha ha ha...yes the collective of narcissists, voyeurs, psychotics' delusional posturing, morons posting wisdom quotes ten times a day...you are right - it is a disease.'


Pooja Kapoor


"I've even heard that a one-year-old toddler has been uploading selfies daily showing the progress of his first tooth"!! Hahahahahaaa.. You are absolutely spot on! Thanks for the giggle :D


Mini M


You are so right with your blog this time. People are hooked on the social media and it has turned into a disease. People sit together but their noses are stuck in their cell phones and there is no conversation. Social media is turning people into loners who prefer to communicate via cell phones rather than talk with each other in person. It is going to be a very lonely and sad world very soon.


Priti Doshi


Wonderful!!
Light humour
no i didn't feel it exggajurated





AN INTERN'S INSIGHTS

MEHER CASTELINO | Sept 01, 2014  


I am completely disillusioned with the fashion industry.

Why what happened. You just graduated with top marks, won awards for your final collection and now you are depressed.

Yes, I wasted four years of my life learning about a profession which is so hollow.

What is it tell me about it.

I interned with a top designer as I wanted to get the hands on experience and it was a disappointment.

Really why what was the matter?

The designer wanted me to copy collections from magazines or his own past collections.

Really that is very sad.

Then I went to intern with a well-known brand and things were worse there. I was told to look at top foreign brands and copy them.

Oh dear that is sad. So what did you do?

I left of course. Then I interned with a top department store and there too the story was the same. They wanted copies of foreign online stores' merchandise. It was so frustrating.

Yes I can imagine how you must be feeling. It is so discouraging then what did you do?

I went to a jewellery and footwear designer to intern since I love designing funky jewellery and shoes but there the same story occurred. I had to copy the well-known western brands.

Not again this looks like a disease. This is really getting out of hand. You are a creative person so then what did you do?

I decided to give myself more chances.

So where did you go?

I went to a top handbag designer. There the story was really bad they were making complete strike-offs of all the foreign brands and selling at half the price.

Goodness me where will this stop?

I don't think it is going to stop at all, this is a disease, which has infected nearly everybody in the fashion industry and there is no cure for it.

This is very sad.

I interned at a multi brand outlet and this was the worst. It was opposite a top selling doyen of the fashion industry and the store wanted me to copy the designs from her store window and put them in their window display.

What did you do?

I walked out of course. But now I am very happy and have managed to beat this rat race.

How have you done it?

I am working for a copy machine brand, which produces world class copying machines. I have to make copies on it to demonstrate so I design my original creations and make copies of the sketches whenever I have to demonstrate.

Wow, you are brilliant you must have complete job satisfaction.

Yes, the customers buy the copying machine and often buy my fashion sketches and get the garments stitched!

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Sathya Saran


Sad but true, your column. One of your best, Meher


Jayshree


Greatarticle! I was laughing by the end. It's so true too. All that copying was worth at least a good laugh.


Jasmeen G Dugal


Brilliant piece Meher and bang on target as always. I was so disillusion with some of our country's biggest names copying off some of the leading designers worldwide SHAMELESSLY. Why can't we create contemporary versions of our traditional designs? There will never be an inspiration block! And how will the Indian fashion industry move ahead if we continue to ape others?


Imam Siddique


Thanks Meher. In one word. VISCERAL.


Neelima Agrawal


Lovely blog and loved the ending!ll Copycats are all the rage now it seems. Original and Creative designers are so last season. Look for openings in Xerox? ha..ha.."


G. K. Kuruvila


A really well written piece. True to a large extent but how original can you get.In all design problems, you put your requirements down and design a product to meet the requirement. In engineering, it is much better if you know how similar problems have been handled in the past and what are the drawbacks of each solution.
In clothes it is difficult to put the requirement down. So it is easier to copy.


Kaumudi


And they justify it with - Imitation is the best form of flattery ....... lol


Wendell Rodricks


Copying is elevated to an art form in India


Air Cmde T.T.Job


That is called innovation


Ruby


I am still laughing ! All of us are copying something in one way or another as it seems to be the thing to do. This person seems to have found herself in a round about way. Very few people understand that each of us is unique and we must do things our way. But I guess that would not pay the bills ! But we need to try.


Prasad


Great fun!!!!!


AnandG


its not as bad - i am sure


Saionee


Indeed, it's so relevant! :)))))))


Mini M


Wow this blog of yours is very funny but also scary is this the state of the fashion industry in India that designers, brands, retailers want to sell only copies? Where will all this end? Fashion is just one big joke in India with even fashion weeks turning into tamashas with only Bollywood designers getting importance instead of business hubs.


Soniya


A beautifully written article Meher, made me giggle like crazy. But in all honesty design is either about finding solutions or reworking the past, with a new trend. Everything is inspired or learnt. It is how someone puts it together that makes it their signature. Designers take their ideologies, learning, leanings, inspirations and take it to the next level. And some of our designers do a hell of a great job. Very few industries have the kind of pressure designers have. Every season they put their life savings to 'showcase' a fresh look. Often a crazy critique comes along and in a jocular manner cuts their efforts down to size. In no other industry are designers judged only by their last collections. Often this leads designers to follow the 'others' herd themselves in the security of copying. If we need to see something 'new' we need to absorb something 'new'. Do you think the east is ready for 'newness of design'. You are one of the few well informed, dedicated style writers, if we had a few more like you, this industry would have blossomed.


Richa Bansal


Haha... so utterly tragic but true... it's there everywhere... "take a look at that and replicate it/ copy it/ just make a few changes -- make it yellow instead of red!!!" - such oft-heard lines just about everywhere!


Dipankar


Awesome one Meher





FINALE DREAMS

MEHER CASTELINO | Aug 16, 2014  


How is your business progressing and your new collections for the many fashion weeks that are coming up?

Business is very good and my new collections are coming out really well for the different fashion weeks.

That sounds really great then why are you looking so glum?

There is one dream of mine, which has never come true even after so many years of being in the business of fashion.

What is the problem, are buyers ignoring you and not placing orders?

Not at all, they are chasing me from all over the world.

Are retailers unhappy with your system of working and making things difficult for you?

Not at all, they are so cooperative I could not ask for better deals.

Then what is it? Are your collections not selling well?

No, no they are flying off the racks faster than I can design them.

Then is the media not giving you good reviews?

Not in the least. They are very kind and encouraging through all these decades that I have been in business.

Then what's your problem?

I still have not made it as a finale designer for a fashion week while some designers have done finales nearly every month.

Oh that is the cause of your gloom? There is a reason for this which you don't seem to know.

What is this reason?

Well firstly do celebs wear your clothes?

No my collections are for the mass market.

I see, then do Bollywood stars wear your clothes?

Not yet but the buyers love my commercially viable collections.

You do not understand my questions. Do socialites wear your clothes?

Well no, but they have commented that they like them.

Okay, have you given your clothes free to the stars, celebs, editors of fashion magazines, stylists to wear at Red Carpet events?

Not yet but they sell out so fast I don't have enough stock left for all these promotions.

Do you have high powered friends who rave about your collections whenever they go out?

No I am quite reserved and shy about these things.

Do you attend Page 3 parties and get your picture in the paper and give quotes and interviews on every subject on earth besides fashion?

I don't have the time to do all that I am busy designing nearly 24 x 7.

Then how can your dream of becoming a finale designer ever get realized?

What do you mean? Is there a secret or criteria to become a finale designer?

You must follow all the above points I have enumerated then your dream will come true.

Fashion seems to be a tougher business than even politics for dreams to turn into reality.

Why do you say that?

In politics a sandwich seller who feeds the masses can head a country; but in fashion a top best-selling designer to the masses can never be a finale designer.

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AnandG


Starting from nowhere going to nowhere still all designers must find the way....


Air Cmde. T.T. Job


In fashion world, Quality people count more than Quantity people


Pooja Samant


What a naked truth...!
It's hard hitting fact that in show business a Genius never gets his dues!
Bravo Meher...You have written truth !


Rukhmini Krishnan


You have hit the nail on the head.i do not usually comment although I do read your blogs regularly. And enjoy them.


Neelima


In the final analysis - designer or politician, always good to pander to the target consumer/ future voter bank, as the case maybe.Good advise Meher.


Asha Baxi


You are so right!
I recall an experience I Had a long time ago at NIFT while organizing a prestigious fashion event when one of our own alumni. a well known hi-fashion designer insisted that he will particpate only if given the opening or closing slot (finale) in the show!


Ruby


This means one has to project or promote oneself in every sphere to be recognized. Work alone is not enough. One has to Tom Tom, invite, entertain and do a lot of PR same seems to be in every sphere, even offices !


Wendell Rodricks


The art if getting finales with mediocre work is well documented in Indian Fashion history : )


Dinesh Singhal


So true Meher. Designers who are well networked with the Celebrity World - Film Stars, High Society, Page 3 types - are the ones getting all the attention and Premium Spots while so many talented and successful designers doing well selling to classes too are being ignored or treated second class just because they are shy.


Jasmeen G Dugal


So true! Politics is child's play compared to finale machinations!!


Mini M


Your blog this time is very correct. Fashion weeks have more politics than any other profession and the buyers and audience are surprised how the designers are selected. In such a big country with thousands of designers only a handful are ruling the roost and not allowing anyone who is not in their clique to get into the business or the limelight.


Kaumudi


There are some really good designers out there which should be showcasing their work.... It is sad that the business of fashion is in this state.....





FASHION WARS

MEHER CASTELINO | Aug 01, 2014  


Do you know what is more entertaining than even movies or plays these days?

No what is it?

The fashion wars that are taking place right now.

Fashion wars what is that? I have heard of political, advertising, regional, national and international wars but not fashion wars.

Haven't you seen how pens are drawn and everybody is at war in the fashion world when fashion weeks are about to happen? It is really very thrilling.

What is happening and how is it thrilling?

Designers are immediately up in arms when the selection for opening and closing designers of fashion weeks are announced.

Why is that? It is going a bit too far now?

You don't understand because there is more politics in fashion than in any other profession.

Oh dear that is sad.

The fashion week organisers also go for the kill and try to verbally stab each other and sometimes the designers; so that more designers will participate in their events.

This is getting really bad.

Then of course there is the major skirmish between the designers and fashion week organisers which could get a little dirty with "linen" being washed in public.

What is this, I have never heard of anything so silly?

The best entertainment is when two or three designers gang up then it's even more fun than watching the top box office comedies.

Really is it that interesting to watch?

Then models get battle ready to undercut each other so they can beat the newbies who are waiting in the wings to model for free.

Wow, the models also fight it out?

Yes, even choreographers, stylists, makeup artists, hair stylists, back stage crew, event managers, public relations companies, photographers, hospitality; also roll up their sleeves to hit the mark.

This is carrying the fight a bit too far now!

That is not all the biggest clashes are for the front rows at fashion weeks when socialites, celebs, stars and high profile editors draw swords to ensure that they are not overlooked and pushed into the second row.

Oh dear why?

It's a matter of their prestige and reputation at stake, which is so fragile that a chair in the front or at the back will make or break it.

This is a messy business.

Of course it is. Fashion is the trickiest profession and only the brave venture into it.

Yes, you are right.

The attacks are so subtle and discreet one doesn't know it till the arrow hits the bull's eye.

Well from now on I am not going to watch any political, social or movie channels for entertainment. I will get my laughs and fun through fashion news because it is so exciting, suspenseful, funny, entertaining and so glamorously real.

Don't forget these wars also have the best faces, styles and creativity, which add to your free entertainment experience.

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JR


Really funny but Tragic Truths Meher... It's a steal to watch all this for Free..!


Neelima


All that sophisticated glamour and fake camaraderie ...appearances sure are deceptive. Wish those you write about also read this.


Marie & Phil


Nice column Meher - everything looks good in the fashion world. What I find so hard now a days all the clothing's are made for younger generation. People forget the older people after 50's - why don't they create some decent type of clothes for older generation? This is the only comment I have.


Aniket


Runway Rajniti as its Hilarious best.Real fashion lies somwhere in between showstopper and media net.


Pooja Kapoor


This is so true! Good one! :)


Jasmeen G Dugal


Fashion wars is the right term Meher. It used to be so professional earlier with a couture week, wills lifestyle India fashion week in Delhi and Lakme fashion week in Mumbai. now there's bridal show, bridal exhibit and city-based fashion weeks where old collections are usually showcased in turn in every city driving the media mad with nothing to cover!! We even had a Gurgaon fashion week and Dehradun fashion week though God knows who participate, why they participate and who attends! And what about the online fashion week last week? How is it different since wills and Lakme are streamed live?! hmmm.


Wendell Rodricks


Yup! And sometimes I start the war by putting it out on FB. Ha ha


Shubhika Sharma


Haha!! This was a real fun read!
Id also like to add that we are now terrified of bloggers! The new style police !


Mini M


Yes you so right. Now that the fashion weeks will start one will read about all the infighting and back stabbing that will go on amongst the people involved. This fashion business is far from glamorous and more of a rag race.


AnandG


It's the silence from which original creativity takes birth...but noise has become order of the day...be it so and join the gossip..


Kaumudi


I hear you Meher .... what about when designers accuse each other of copying their designs ..... spare me the horror!!!!





STYLE GODS

MEHER CASTELINO | July 15, 2014  


Do you know who are the most pampered, feared and revered persons in the fashion business today?

No who are they? Is it the buyers?

No, not at all, buyers don't matter these days, since they want bargains and haggle for prices when it comes to placing orders.

Then is it the retailers?

Designers are now ignoring retailers since they want collections on consignment only instead of outright buying which is not feasible.

Then is it the media you are worried about?

Not at all, the media just prints whatever information is given to them by the PR agencies or if it's an advertorial then they print anything.

Okay so is it the customers you are concerned about?

Never, customers are so easy to please these days.

Then who in the fashion world has to be pampered, feared and honoured according to you?

It is these new breed of stylists that have suddenly emerged and are ruling over the fashion world.

Really who are they?

They are the all-powerful ones. Nearly everyone is a stylist these days and they can make or break a designer's or star's career.

How do they do that?

The other day a stylist took a creation from a top selling designer and put it on a short plump starlet. That was the end of the designer's work and the starlet's career. No one wanted to touch him or her with a barge pole after that since they didn't want brick bats from the media and the fashion police.

Oh dear that is sad.

On the other hand, a mediocre designer became pally with a high flying stylist and her career is soaring since her average clothes are styled so well that women are rushing to her.

Wow that is really great.

A self-proclaimed top stylist attached to a foreign publication met her Waterloo when she dressed an aging former top star like a teenybopper.

Oh that must have been a disaster for both.

Then there is this stylist who has turned a flop dumb star into a fashion icon and even though the lady can't act, she is signed up for brand endorsements and modelling contracts because she is a well-known "clothes horse".

This is absolutely splendid. Stylists can even make or break the careers of movie stars.

Yes of course, today stylists are wined, dined, offered free junkets, freebies and paid insane amounts to dress stars, socialites and celebs. Even blogs and columns are dedicated to stylists.

That's a great profession to be in now as far as fashion is concerned.

You are so right and you don't need to study for four long years, you turn into a success if your first assignment gets bouquets.

Wonderful that is superb.

From styling the next step could be anything. Even as an editor of a fashion magazine, the face of a foreign brand or even a designer. The sky is the limit for a stylist these days and they are like gods on earth who are worshipped by the fashion fraternity.

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AnandG


A present day truth - most are afraid to say but Meher u have penned so well and spot on.


Jayshree


Hi Ma'am. I agree with you on that. WE meet so many stylists these days and they can actually make or break a star's image today. Don't know if it's goo for fashion though.


Jasmeen G Dugal


Very true Meher. Everyone wnats to pose on the red carpet or look good for the papparazzi at fashion week and tey all hire stylists to look casually chic!


Kaumudi


I think we can officially say that even Harvard Business school would be stumped with our marketing strategies.... ha ha ...


Ruby


I think the whole world is turning topsy turvy about everything. The values we had are scorned at and we are the odd ones out. I pity the next generations…. The few with value and ethics will be suffering…. the rest will not know the difference.


Air Cmde T.T.Job


Fashion comes from style. So stylists rule the roost


Wendell Rodricks


Stylists are power players in their own heads. They are nothing but cut and paste artists WHO have not succeeded in fashion as designers


Neelima


"Spot on Meher - Move over fashion bloggers, the Stylists are here. They are even being hired by designers themselves."


Mini M


What a perfect blog. These stylists seem to be ruling like royalty and demanding payment in lakhs. Women in the past dressed so elegantly and their styles were copied and are even popular now and without the help of these pretending designers. The fashion business is turning into a big money making racket where everyone wants to make a quick buck with all kinds of talents.


Pooja Samant


You are fabulous observer...Loved it..As usual...!
How every thing has tremendously changed..! You are being silent spectator!& wonderful writer...:)


Urvashi


Firstly, I have to tell how huge of a fan I am of your writing. I really look forward to all you blog posts and my favorite till date has to be "rip them off". Its so comforting to know people understand what goes on in our lives and minds.





GRASSROOT FASHION

MEHER CASTELINO | July 01, 2014  


I always like to be in fashion. I read all the fashion magazines and follow trends.

That's wonderful you have always been well dressed.

But now I feel I must change my preference and be really stylish. Fashion magazines are so pas
se they show only foreign brands which don't suit us.

You are quite correct so how will you change your dressing style?

Watching Bollywood stars, socialites, models and their fashion is now quite boring. They wear outlandish clothes which no one can wear.

Yes you are very right they are not commercially viable.

Even going to fashion shows is a waste of time. The clothes on the ramp are meant for reed thin models.

I agree with you completely you have hit the bull's eye with that remark.

I am going to follow people who create trends for real people.

So what are you planning to do?

I am going to be original and follow our leaders; they all dress so well with their characteristic touches.

Okay so which one do you want to follow?

Well I was thinking of some lovely white saris with simple blouses.

That sounds really good and so stylish as well as so very earthy.

But I also like colourful long or short sleeved kurtas with crisp Bundis they look so trendy now.

Yes, you will look great in them with your height and figure.

On the other hand, a smart kameeze and salwars will also be very comfortable.

You are spot on with that selection, of course that will be a really fashionable option.

Do you think a pure Kanjeevaram sari will give me the right fashionable image?

Of course, nothing can beat them. So many leaders wear these beauties with such grace.

What about a trendy pair of jeans, shirt, waistcoat and a scarf thrown around the neck. Many young leaders are wearing them. Do you think I will look good in that?

Why not, you will be really outstanding.

The other day I saw one of the leaders in a smart lungi and kurta. How will that look on me?

Perfect it will be so comfortable during these hot sweltering days.

Even my footwear will be comfortable sneakers with churidars or Hawaii chappals with saris for easy walking.

Wonderful this is just the perfect way to dress.

But there is one problem in all this style of dressing.

Now what is the problem as far as your dressing style is concerned?

If I follow any one leader's style statement then people will think I am a follower of that leader's party

So what's wrong with that?

You don't understand I only want to follow the leader's style not the party.

Okay so it is fine just do that, I don't see a problem there.

But I want to start a party of my own.

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