As we turnover a new leaf in 2014, it is important that we look back and reflect on what really defined power in 2013. When I as a business management student in 2007 first came across definition of power “ability to influence behavior of others and course of events”, it changed my outlook of things and people at large. So the question remains who really embodied power in 2013?
Even though fashion has experienced extraordinary growth in the last decade, one is left scrambling for figureheads that embody it. Whether you choose to define power in elitist avant garde context or take the more populist commoner road you would realize that we have failed as an industry to produce torchbearers that can mentor and inspire the new generation. In the 90s we had visionaries like Maheen Khan, Nabila, Tariq Amin, Rizwan Beyg, Khawar Riaz and stars like Reema, Meera, Vaneeza etc .
One would expect due to emergence of fashion councils, fashion schools and access to Internet, the fashion industry would evolve into a more structured entity. However, the reality has been quite the opposite. To illustrate this one can look at how magazine editors/editors no longer reign supreme as access to Internet has given petty bloggers like myself audience , Lawn giants are being dethroned by smaller textile manufacturers who produce 20 collections by collaborating with designers rather than employing their own, models are their own agents leading to closure or atleast downfall of all major talent hunters of 90s and etc.
Increased competition and democratization of fashion is not only breeding mediocrity but also delusion that one can do anything /anyone to make it. Personal connections increasingly dominate professionalism and processes.
Nevertheless, we shouldn’t lose hope and paint a dismal outlook. The past 13 years of 2000s have been years of collective failure but individual excellence. Individuals like HSY who has diversified his namesake business and established himself as a master showman, Umair Tabbani as a PR maven has redefined Sania Maskatiya‘s market savvy brand, Selina Rashid championing how PR is really to be done right, Daaman,and Ego proving that you can flourish doing pret a porter fashion business and there are many other notable examples.
After all is said and done, only time will tell if we are on the right path, whether power was really in the right hands.
P.S. all the photos belong to their respective owners.