Ever thought of buying a Wendell Rodricks kaftan for Rs5000? Now all the style junkies can shop for their dream designers at affordable prices on stylista.com — the new refreshing fashion portal which retails a good mix of High Street offerings. Over to Anjana...
How educated is the Indian online buyer?
Thanks to the foray of a large number of international brands here in the past couple of years, the Indian consumer has opened up considerably to the idea of high street fashion. However, we’re being forced to wear European fashion at international pricing that doesn’t suit our specific body type. So we felt the time was right to develop India’s first high street brand — one with a very global outlook — designed by talented designers from India.
Is there a strategic move in selecting designers who are younger and edgy names?
It’s a fairly stress-free process for designers, as they use their creativity to design a collection for Stylista, following which we manage the entire process of sampling, manufacturing, distribution and marketing. It is therefore important to us to preserve the authenticity and aesthetic of the designer, hence, we’ve co-branded all of our designer collaborations.
Won’t it create category killer for designers’ main brands as the offerings are cheaper and also of great quality?
At no point in time are we competing directly with a designer’s own brand. The point behind Stylista.com is to develop collections that are affordable high street take offs of designers’ higher priced runway collections. Democratisation of fashion is the only way to make designer fashion desirable to a larger audience. India is yet to create a global brand on the aesthetic strength of its homegrown talent, so we’re right on the pulse of what the consumer wants today. Moreover, with other high street brands, pricing is still prohibitive thanks to the fact that most of them have brick and mortar outlets with large overheads.
The difference with Stylista.com is this: we are a vertically integrated company, i.e. we manufacture everything in-house, which makes us self-sufficient and also allows us to keep a stringent check on quality, and being online only allows us to do away with physical store mark-ups and middlemen to give consumers designer garments at truly disruptive prices. So while our in-house Stylista Private Label is priced under Rs3,000, all our designer collections are priced under Rs5,000.