With children becoming more brand conscious and parents ready to splurge on high-end labels, kidswear segment in India is witnessing a boom. From following the fashion trends set by celebrities and Bollywood’s young brigade, we have in no time moved on to ardently recreating those looks for our toddlers and young ones.

According to a 2014 ASSOCHAM report, the kidswear market is growing at the rate of 20% per annum that makes the segment one of the fastest growing markets in the country. The percolation down of kids fashion and brand consciousness to Tier-II and Tier-III cities has further contributed to the growth of the industry and in particular the branded kidswear market.

Elaborating on the growing market for designer kidswear in India, Pankaj Kapoor, Head of Marketing, Reliance India, says, “It has been a boom in kidswear industry. Earlier, children’s garments were purchased from local stores, and neighbourhood shops based on the convenience factor. Branded clothing was only bought by affluent people. This trend has evolved gradually into a market where branded clothing holds the top most position. Along with it, shopping and purchasing methods are also going through extensive changes.”

Brands are also developing categories like infant wear, kids’ formal wear, kids’ ethnic wear, swim wear and casual wear, along with a wide range of other merchandise for children to tap the growing segment.

Realising the potential of this market, brands are also widening their presence in this segment. Another important change that is taking place in this area is the emergence of children as an independent buyer group. Kapoor adds, “While developing their own styles children reveal their own creative streaks. Market has a lot of categories for children apparels differentiated on the basis of their age and personalities.”

Furthermore, events like Junior Fashion Week (JFW), India Kids Fashion Week (IKFW) and others displaying the latest trends in kids fashion have added to the inexorable growth.

Junior Fashion Week, Autumn Winter 2017 edition that is all set to roll out some of the trendiest winter wear collection for kids will see the participation of renowned brands like US Polo Association Kids (USPA); Marks and Spencer, London (M&S); and The Children’s Place.  Scheduled to take place today at The Grand Vasant Kunj, Delhi, the pre-event workshop had the experts grooming and styling kids to make them runway ready.

Speaking to Guardian 20 about their JFW collection, Alok Dubey, Head of Marketing, USPA revealed, “The whole range of latest, sophisticated and snazzy apparels will make a mark in the fashion industry. In the Autumn Winter edition, USPA is breaking new grounds with innovatively crafted collection for the juniors. When we see juniors wrapped in fashion, we tend to lose our hearts. The collection showcases a vigorous play of bright colours along with reds, blues, and whites marking the core presence of the brand highlighted with stars, stripes, and dot prints.”

M&S will feature sweatshirt hoody paired with loose demin, sophisticated black dungaree with horizontal strips complemented with white stockings , jumpers and bomber jackets in luscious greens, snug blues and bright yellow hues for their Autumn collection at JFW.

Offering all clothing options that are available for adults, the Autumn winter market for kids is filled with cold shoulder dresses and funky hoodies with long boots, making for the perfect blend of fashion and comfort.

Brands are also developing categories like infant wear, kids’ formal wear, kids’ ethnic wear, swim wear and casual wear, along with a wide range of other merchandise for children to tap into this segment. 
Online portals have also been launched for shopping branded kids wear and accessories. Indian fashion designers are also eyeing the space. Some have begun retailing their exclusive designs for kids through physical and e-stores.

Little Tags-Luxury portal for Kids Wear, a brainchild of Chandni Agarwal, a couture connoisseur offers kids’ apparel, footwear and accessories from a huge spectrum of designers for children aged up to 14 year. The online portal has made its foray into the kidswear market by joining hands with the most celebrated luxury labels, such as Masaba Gupta, Shivan & Narresh, Monisha Jaising, Rina Dhaka, Pallavi Mohan, Ridhima Bhasin, Anand Bhushan, Sahil Aneja, and many more well-known names from the Indian fashion industry. Apart from the Indian designers, also on board is eminent Turkish designer Ebru Danyal.

About the conception of Little Tags, Agarwal said, “It has been at the back of our mind always and we could see that there is a gap in the market but never had the intention to tap it basically. But I had my own daughter one and a half year back so that was the time when we realised that there is some avenue missing from the market where we can get good designer wear and Indian wear also. Traditional wear is missing from everywhere; you have to go to the designer personally if you want a custom order. So we just want to be the one stop shop for everything related to designer kids wear be it traditional wear or western wear, shoes or accessories.”

The e-fashion player also offers customization option with every designer product.

For Shivan & Narresh designing kidswear was an exciting experience. Narresh of the renowned label talking about the collaboration revealed, “When Chandni approached us, it just became a platform and an opportunity for us to do this and had Chandni not come along, we would have done this in sometime but the whole process got fast forwarded. We could do this much earlier than we anticipated. So we are very excited to be part of the website and it is completely an untapped market and we seek to be a very bright success in the future.”

Already designing for the millennial couple, making apparels for their kids just became an extension for them. Their collection at Little Tags makes it convenient for the family to travel in style and comfort.

About their collection Narresh said, “Twinning was the central idea behind the entire collection. The idea was to give reason to mother-daughter, father-son to do twinning while they are travelling or even when they are relaxing within their own city… So you have a range of beautiful little bikini’s and fun swimming suits for the girls. We also have swim dresses, which can be worn for swimming or can be worn in general inside the city. For the boys, we have shorts which can be worn as shorts with casual t-shirts or can also being worn for swimming. We also have very cute shoes for both boys and girls and we also have very cute and tiny pajamas for boys and girls.”

The online portal is all set to host an exclusive preview for luxury wear for kids today at The Ashok, Zerruco in the national capital.

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