A chic neckpiece from a stall on Colaba Causeway can be worn with a kurta for a Diwali pooja; it will also make heads turn for your front row do at a fashion show, if worn with a maxi dress.
A show-stopper, right? Street stalls and kiosks in Mumbai have long been havens to look beyond high street labels and mass produced fashionistas. Having said that, these hawkers have for long been at loggerheads with the city's municipal corporation due to legal and infrastructural problems. We need town planners and the powers that be to put their heads together to ensure that these stalls get a chance to do business legally, and add to the charm of the area that are considered as city attractions. This also gives a fair deal to entrepreneurs, single fashion stores and boutique owners who end up having to pay high rents to run their enterprises.
While women might have quite a few options to shop from, men in Mumbai get a raw deal. Trendy street options for men are almost zero (superhero-printed tees on Linking Road don't count). Malls too don't have too much to offer apart from chequered and striped shirts, and an assembly line of dull hues and shades.
The sizing for menswear is a bigger concern. An 'XL' would meet the length demands but would slouch at the shoulders for several men measuring 5 ft 8 in and above who aren't heavy. And all of these come with a not-so-friendly price tag.
More curated shopping options
A city that is well-dressed isn't just because it's home to international labels and swanky malls. A walk on the streets in several towns in India's North East are sure to give us enough material to run a fashion blog for years. Yet Mumbai, with all its shiny malls and big-ticket labels, has a long way to go as far as upping its chic quotient.
Mumbai's junta can do much better in the style department
As for the booming online market, websites need to de-clutter. A portal might advertise itself as the largest fashion hub with over a lakh products. But frankly, who has the time to browse through surplus production pieces (some with defects too) to find that one perfect pair of trainers?
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