Category Archives: Fashion Station

The Secrets of Victoria’s Secret you probably didn’t know!

This cult American lingerie brand is such a must have for every second woman around the globe, isn’t it? Supermodel brand ambassadors or ‘angels’ right from Heidi Klum to Adriana Lima, Miranda Kerr and Helena Christensen have become global faces!

But do you know where Victoria’s Secret manufactures its ‘Pink’ lingerie brand?

It’s manufactured at ‘Intimate Fashions Factory’ which is located at a small village in Kanchipuram district just 30 kms from Chennai in Tamil Nadu! Yes, India!

The women who work at the Intimate Fashions Factory, which produces bras for Victoria’s Secret, La Senza and others, come mostly from poor rural areas in India.

There are close to 2,500 employees (mostly women) working at Intimate Fashions. The girls make around Rs. 8000 a month which is twice as much as the majority of men in their villages who make just about Rs. 120 a day working on farms.

These young women are breadwinners! Not only that, there a positive social changes taking place due to these jobs. Girls, who were married off straight out of school are now delaying their marriages by three or four years.

On Intimate Fashion’s massive factory floor, hundreds of women in bright pink aprons and headscarves sit in long lines bent over their machines, busily stitching red satin ribbons and lilac lace straps as Tamil pop music blares out from speakers.

The conditions at Intimate Fashions is a major improvement for Victoria’s Secret following Bloomberg’s revelations that the company reportedly used cotton that had been picked by teenage girls under grueling conditions in Burkina Faso, West Africa.

Well it doesn’t end here. Victoria has another secret! Our homegrown Alok Industries along with its Sri Lankan partner, MAS Intimates, source close to 300 tonnes of organic, free-trade Burkinabe cotton for Victoria’s Secret. Not just that! This cotton gets shipped to India and Alok Industries spins 200 tonnes of yarn which is then made into fabric and sent to MAS Intimates factories for their other garments before it hits high-street fashion shelves from New York and Paris to London and Tokyo. Their involvement with Alok Industries has been strong since 2007!

After all this, Victoria’s Secret has just one stand-alone store in the whole of India. Delhi! So unfair!

Shhh…

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My Wardrobe Is Overflowing, Still I Have Nothing To Wear!

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It’s not just girls, but boys face such a situation as well, almost every day.  Every morning, our routine somewhere goes through searching the already overflowing cupboard for ‘what to wear today’ and finally landing with something you are unsatisfied with. You always have so many clothes, but still nothing to wear. Think about all those years, investing so much money and time buying clothes you once loved but now unhappy with.  When you flip through a magazine or look at the display at the mall, you start comparing with what you have and what you wish you had in your wardrobe. So you buy more and soon that dress you wanted to buy so desperately eventually lands up somewhere at a corner untouched for months, years and more. You may have found yourself questioning ‘Why don’t I feel good about what I wear? Why do I need to buy a dress which I will wear just once a year?  I have so many choices, but why I feel I don’t have enough?’

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Well you need to agree that either the clothes don’t fit you well, are old-fashioned, defective, were purchased on impulse or you’re just bored of it. We know the problems, but we never dispose such clothes. And that’s because we hope that they will fit us someday or we might find it useful someday. That someday has never come nor will it ever show its face unless you actually do something about it. In fact what we do is, ignore the problems and try to make space for new clothes to fit in and the process continues until it looks like a heap of trash. You’re not alone. We all face this every day. This happens to me as well. I have a really small cupboard and it’s so full, I’m planning to buy a new one this week. Fortunately I’ll have a lot of space now, but I don’t want to go through the same clothes dump yard situation now. So I thought why not try adopting certain tips that will help me get organised a bit and not make me feel the need for another cupboard in a couple of years. So let’s look at tips we can use to create space for new crap to get dumped in.

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First of all take out everything you have in your cupboard and elsewhere where they’ve been deserted for future use. You’ll have to do a lot of sorting and trial work, so be prepared to keep aside a full day at least to get this done. If you foresee a huge crag of clothes, I’d suggest a weekend to get this in place. OK, so before you begin, you need to ask yourself a lot of questions in your mind with each piece of cloth in your hand and be really honest with yourself.  ‘Does this fit me? Do I really need this? Is that a hole or has the color faded? Will I wear it if I saw it hanging at a store right now? Is it comfortable? Have I worn this in a year or ever? Does the color look good on me? Do I love the way it looks on me?’ and so on. You might want to try each and every garment to reconfirm. Tiring, but worth it once you see the results.

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Now sort them in 2 groups. The one you will wear on one side and the ones you won’t on the other. It might seem like the toughest decision you’d ever have to make, but you have to do it. Remember you need to create space for NEW ones. So let that motivate you and start working on it. But again, you don’t have to discard everything you don’t wear. Sometimes it’s not a bad idea to store something you value, like a sweatshirt knitted by your grandmother or something that holds emotional value like the first dress you got as a gift from someone really special. I still have my adorable hardly worn clothes from my childhood. They are special and bring back a lot of memories. So don’t hold back when it comes to these things.

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Coming to categorization, you need to decide beforehand how you want to organize your wardrobe. Study the partitions you already have and need be, you can create further partitions for drawers or shelves and also build pockets on the wardrobe door to store accessories and different types of clothing. You can group your garments the way you want. If you want you can sort your clothes based on seasons or type of wear like summer, winter, formals, casual, ethnic, party, skirts, denims, dresses and so on. If you have enough space to hang, hang everything you have minus sweaters since they tend to lose shape. Some prefer to stack up clothes having similar shades of colour. Decide on what works best for you and then follow the blueprint you have thought of.

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Coming to the ones that are left outside the cupboard, you can donate it to people who need it. Trust me there are many in this world who are in need of at least one pair of proper clothing and they’ll be really happy to wear what you give them. But for clothes like inner-wear that are not worth donating, just dump it in the bin. You can also sell old clothes online. There are a few websites that can help you not only clear your mess but also let you earn something. Not bad, right?

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But how do we stop ourselves from not repeating the same mistakes again? There are times when we tend to buy clothes blindly without thinking whether we are actually going to wear them or not at all. I used to do that a lot, thankfully not anymore. I would buy a nice looking shirt, wear it once or twice and then after years it would still lie at the back of my shelf. It’s not just an organisational mess, but also a waste of money. So what you must do is buy clothes that define your life at present. If you live in a hot and humid place, there’s no point buying material that doesn’t suit the weather. If you have to dress formally for work every day, buy more office wear and less casual wear. Because if you buy clothes for a fantasy version of your life instead of the reality, your clothes will find its way to no-man’s land sooner than you imagine and you’ll end up having too many useless clothes. Sometimes you might want to sit down and think about your style, think on what defines you as a person and what you feel comfortable in. You might have a set of your favorite pair of denims or a certain kind of t-shirt. Pay attention to how the material feels, the shape and the size of the clothing. Once you know what your body and you feel comfortable and confident in, you’ll know what to buy next time you go shopping. You’ll pay more attention to your comfort for multiple occasions rather than buy anything that looks flattering at the store. Of course that doesn’t mean you have to wear the same thing every day. You might want to keep the fabric and fit unchanged and experiment with the style and colors.

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And for all those who have really less time on hand and can’t really afford to waste time on deciding what to wear, follow the tactics used by successful people like Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs or Barack Obama. If you’ve noticed, the Facebook Founder & CEO wears a plain grey T-shirt everywhere, the Co-Founder and CEO of Apple is always dressed up like a French mime artist and the President of the USA owns many identical suits. They’ve got millions to spend on clothes and still wear the same thing everyday, you might want to question? It’s simple. It could be that they just don’t want the media to start discussing about silly issues like who wore what and where. They don’t have the time to ponder on clothes. There are plenty of things that need attention, clothes is not one. Also it’s a solution to move away from pointless decisions of everyday life that people generally make. They cannot afford to waste time and would rather utilize it to make great changes in the world. Also when you are in your best comfortable outfit, it makes you feel confident and at the same time you are building your brand as a personality.

Hope that helps! Happy Shopping 😉