What’s Indian, Italian and has been part of every school kid’s life? It sounds like a trick question, but the shoe brand in question, while European in origin, is as Indian as dal and rice. And to complete the adoption process, designer Malini Ramani has created her first line of shoes for Bata.
“Even I wore their shoes as part of my school uniform,” laughs Ramani, who admits the ubiquitous nature of the brand helps her reach out to the masses. Her first collection, a line of Kolhapuri wedge heels in a mix of pop colours and metallic hues, is a take on what the designer has been creating as part of her line for about seven years now.
“I’ve only had one style, and they’ve been selling like hot cakes for seven years, without any modifications,” she reveals, adding, “So, I was surprised at myself when I came up with so many new patterns and designs for the Bata collection.”
To help her imagination run wild, Ramani created a character — Mango Mausi — who goes to the sangeet and runs around in chiffon saris with plunging necklines and the Kolhapuri heels. “I wanted a collection for the wedding season, which could be worn with a lehenga or a pair of jeans,” Ramani recalls.
Having signed on for two seasons, Ramani admits she’s already halfway through with her second outing. She says, “Next season, we have animal prints, which are my signature. One style is glossy python print sneakers, and I have already seen a few samples which look really cool.”