Are Style and Profession a Match : How Open are we about Fashion as a Career in India?

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“If your heart wants to do it, the society is no one to deny permission. You don’t need permission to dream.” – Pronita Tripathi.

The world around us is not the same as it was 20 years back. People keep talking about the changing times and broadening outlook towards life. But just like the people of the 21st century, this world is also hypocritical. We are apparently very liberal and democratic, but we do see enough evidences everyday, in the neighborhood as well as in the nation as a whole, which reveal our hypocrisy and make us realize our true self. Modernity has gripped the society in a strangulating kind of a way. So, after all these attempts at developing ourselves and discovering life in outer space, how open are we about fashion as a career in India?

Are Style and Profession a Match : How Open are we about Fashion as a Career in India?

The skills of the heart, like designing, writing, singing, acting, dancing are always considered as risks and uncertain career choices. We have to fight with the world to make it happen. No family is very sure about their child becoming a fashion designer. They think it is a whimsical dream, which is unattainable and worthless, at the same time. Why is it so, that the chances of a kid becoming an engineer is more than that of being a fashion entrepreneur? Why is our thought process so stagnant and corrupted in its roots?

I guess this is so because practically: we do not have any set formula or criterion that needs to be followed for becoming a fashion designer or a stylist or an event manager. Whereas, there is a tangible course for cracking the IIT JEE Mains. Well? We have reached the zenith of rationality, it seems.

I had attended a Summit on Sustainability and Disruptions for mitigating Global Risks. It was attended by many eminent professors and scholars, who were presenting papers and solutions on how to save this planet from human greed. The GM of NABARD had also graced the event. During a session, a certain Professor, who was presenting a paper of Generation Z, told us,” When I asked Sofia (a social humanoid developed by a Hong Kong-based company) if she was going to take up my job, she replied,’ In a few years probably yes, but I would prefer that we work together’. So, we have to realise, that the world has reached a point where we no longer want technical skills, but definitely, the demand for artistic and creative skills is going to become magnanimous in the near future. That is why, you should engage yourself in doing things which cannot be done by robots. That is what companies in the global market are looking for nowadays.”

We have enough reasons to be creative and original. Not everyone has a flair for designing. Fine arts is not everyone’s cup of tea. And yet the ground reality is really shocking. Fine arts is not even considered as a subject in maximum colleges. Even the prestigious colleges have only recently introduced the Fine Arts courses. So many hands have to stop sketching because of a dearth of institutes or for the disapproval of family and society. When you flaunt a designer piece of jewellery, you are very snobbish about it. But when you have a kid who wants to become a designer, your face heats up in fury and shame. Why is it so?

If your neighbours flaunt the engineering projects their daughter is working on, you can flaunt a saree under the label of your daughter too. Nothing comes easy in life. Designing is as tough as engineering, or any other profession. The plain truth is, success is doing the best in what you are the best in doing. Nothing more; and certainly nothing less.

One of India’s leading fashion designers, Sabyasachi Mukherji, hails from a middle class Bengali family. His mother worked at a  Government Art Copllege and was extremely fond of handicrafts. His dad lost his job when Sabyasachi was just 15 years old. Sabyasachi wanted to study at NIFT but his parents disagreed. So, he sold his books to pay for the admission form, and passed the exam. After that, he graduated from NIFT and four months later, he started his eponymous label which began with a workforce of three people. Now, he is one of the Associate Designer members of Fashion Design Council of India and the youngest board member of the National Museum of Indian Cinema. He is a classic example of why you should fight for your dreams and plunge into the unknown.

Fashion is all about weaving passion into every fibre and bead of your creation. If you know what you are good at and are ready to stick to it, then society should not dictate your ways. In the end, we all have to return to the five elements of nature. Make your stay worth it. Pack your backpack and step out to conquer the world!

We have to become the change we want to see.