15th February 2023: The ninth edition of India Beach Fashion Week (IBFW) got off to a rocking start on the eve of Valentine’s Day at Divar, Goa’s Island of Love. Presented by Ikonic and powered by Timex, IBFW is Asia’s largest and one of its most prominent calendar events. It will be hosted over two days at Mercure, the Goa Deevaya resort.

India’s first Island Week & Fashion Festival started with a meet and greet session at which brand representatives, designers, and content creators were introduced to the assembled guests. Among those who took the bow were Pallav Ojha, CEO & Co-founder, of COMO Collective, Rayed Merchant, Co-founder, of Ikonic Professional, Deepak Chabbra, Managing Director, of Timex Group India, Pradnya Somesh Popade, Head, of Marketing & Communications, Samsonite, and Puneet Motiani, Designated Partner, Gardenia Cosmotrade LLP (GATSBY). The tropical Eden was a picture-perfect setting for the open-air sunset session alongside the Mandovi river.

IBFW’s ‘Experience’ partner Royal Falcon Music Production enhanced the magic of the 18th-century island with its lush forests, emerald green paddy fields and meticulously restored colonial-style Portuguese villas with a live band. Royal Falcon is a Dubai-based music label that brings the world together with a fusion of international musicians and world music.

The curtain-raiser show was by Vikram Phadnis, making his debut in resort wear. His collection, ‘Bloom’, is inspired by the designer’s store, Adhvan, which he started in Goa last year. He experimented with resort wear for the first time at Adhvan, and encouraged by its success, decided to pursue it in a big way.

The free-flowing silhouettes reflect Vikram’s love for bohemian prints, cuts, and styling. The clothes are comfortably chic, but since he was showcasing them at the curtain-raiser, he glammed them up with elaborate hair-dos and funky makeup.

With 44 designs in georgette and linen, ‘Bloom’ features shorts, swimsuits with capes and dhotis for women. The embroidery is minimalistic but set off with embellishments. The collection is eye-catching, with bold prints in black and white, along with pops of neon, and the audience response was overwhelming.

IBFW targets young and bold fashion enthusiasts and entrepreneurs, designers, content creators and artists, fresh graduates and early innovators. Their vision and outlook, design aesthetics and technology can help build India’s biggest creative ecosystem with consumers and brand custodians who stand up for green space energy and a circular usage economy.

It was only appropriate then that Day One should wrap up with Eliferous, a collaborative show presented by Timex and former Miss Teen Universe Srishti Kaur. Encapsulating the essence of art and fashion, Eliferous translates Srishti’s experiences and aspirations into a signature collection that represents eloquence and freedom in designs which defy convention.

Srishti’s showstopper was Sakshi Malik, an Indian actress, lifestyle, beauty and fashion social media influencer and model. Sakshi had played herself in Kartik Aryan’s 2018 hit film, Sonu Ki Titu Ki Sweety, and her song, Bom Diggy Diggy, had become viral, getting her millions of hits.

Open-air ramps, including India’s longest ramp and the first one facing the sea, makes IBFW a one-of-its-kind fashion festival. There is lots more to look forward to today at the Island of Love on the Day of Love.