Blurbs: From Milan to Mianwali, the designers have brought blatantly copied designs in their new collections and have made fools out of unaware customers in the market

Working under the carefully concocted story of ‘talking inspiration’, some designers have carelessly made exact replicas of those ‘Western Inspirations’. In the business of fashion where originality and your input is what makes you a designer, there is no room for such acts.

 

We all say that Pakistan’s fashion industry has come forward achieving and excelling rapidly. Designers over the past few decades came and conquered with their big names and their flagrant prices. Today fashion in its truest most original sense is not limited to runways or fashion magazines but has achieve a large clientele being catered with flagship stores all over Pakistan. Nevertheless, the question is that is this whole version of progress and achievements as untainted as it sounds like? Have all designers truly used their pools of talent in originally creating a piece? Unfortunately no.

There have been many designers who have not been part of the respectable assent. Some of the most renowned names of the industry have had the audacity to copy designs from their western counterparts. From Milan to Mianwali, the designers have brought blatantly copied designs in their new collections and have made fools out of unaware customers in the market. Working under the flag name of “being inspired” there is a limit to what you can call inspiration and what you can’t. You will be shocked to see that these retail fashion houses that are so esteemed in the fashion industry have been caught in the act. Sunday Plus takes a look at such shameless attacks.

Working under the carefully concocted story of ‘talking inspiration’, some designers have carelessly made exact replicas of those ‘Western Inspirations’. In the business of fashion where originality and your input is what makes you a designer, there is no room for such acts.

The first to come under scrutiny here we have the lawn legends Sana Safinaz. Hard to believe that your favorite designer could do such a thing? We were shocked too. The story which was first broken by the fashion blogger Aamiriat, where some prints from the last year’s summer colllection were found on the western ramps. Sana Safinaz spring/summer collection 2012’s one very – jora was copied from Emilio Pucci’s summer/spring 2012 collection. As if this wasn’t enough, the very recent Sana Safinaz’ hit 2013 summer spring collection advertises a piece that has been “inspired” from Zara’s printed pants. Although the  designer duo themselves talk vehemently against those ‘kaarigars’ who have copied their designs and are selling them cheaply. The question in point is that can designers with such esteemed reputations get away with something like this? Taking in point the flagrant prices that they charge, is it not important to give originality in return?

Most designers give the explanation that they were inspired from such and such piece. But we all know that there is a very fine line between taking inspiration to downright chappa (copying) of a piece.

One other example is Hira Lari’s shameless copying of the exact same design used by the French designer brand Balmain. Not even a blind person can get away with what she has done here. With her entire collection based on such motifs, it is a shame for her to be calling it her own.

Not only the designers but also some very well established retail brands have also walked the ‘Hall of Shame’. The Origins Eid Collections boasts off a piece that has been brought exactly from the Chanel Bombay show. The staggering reality of such replicas makes it morally wrong for such brands to be charging a premium price for something that is copied.

Karma’s Sunsilk PFDC’s Gatsby Collection has also said to have apiece that looks a tad bit too close to the piece showcased by Balmain in their Fall 2012 collection. Although the similarities are staggering, it seems like Balmain has been everyone’s favorite in Pakistan. Along with the already mentioned Hira Lari and Karma designers, like Bashir Ahmed and Aamna Aqeel have also been taking ‘inspiration’ from Balmain.

When a designer claims that they are taking inspiration, they need to understand that all of it has boundaries. If you were a high street brand, manufacturing clothes at an affordable price, it would make much more sense but if you are a designer producing an entire collection in the name of inspiration and charging a price ten times higher than a high street brand then the idea is not justified. An example would be Maheen Karim’s recreation of a striped ensemble that looked like it was taken off from the ramp of Roberto Cavalli’s 2007 S/S collection. See the images and you can decide for yourself that whether this is a clear rip off or just plain old innocent inspiration.

After attending dime a dozen fashion shows and observing all collections that come out, I have noticed that there has been an ever rising trend at making clothes that are more western whether or not someone copies or takes inspiration from the western side of the planet Earth, the ethos of Pakistani fashion are quickly becoming westernized. From their cuts to styling, most designers have resorted to keeping it western. Fashion itself is a functional process. Designers do take inspirations from collections all over the world. Which is why we have an amazing showcase every year in fashion weeks. But to be thinking from the customer’s perspective it is important to know that we need to have a original work on the racks. Something that is unique to the culture of Pakistan and also to produce something that has its own fashion statement.

In the world of fashion, there needs to be a balance of probabilities that even if a designer has taken inspiration from somewhere it is altered, amended, and given the designer’s own signature touch to be fairly called their own.