Gitto's line comprises formals and semi-formals in bright hues that spell understated elegance
"I AM vintage. I don't really go in for this sort of thing," says designer Gitto, with a smile when asked to pose for a photograph with her collection. She was a faculty member of the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, from 1972 to 1992, and her students include Sujatha Guha of Ray and Keshavan, designer duo Abraham and Thakore, Bina Rao of Hyderabad and Archana of Bandhej. "There are many stars among my students, but that's only natural as I taught for two decades," says the designer whose name is Madhurima Patni.
"Gitto is a nickname. The good thing about the name as a label is that it doesn't mean anything, it isn't rooted anywhere and it's very neutral," she says. Though she gave up teaching 11 years ago, she still does a lot of workshops with students. She says Gitto was started as an `export-only' label, concentrating on furnishing and nightwear. Initially, she only put overruns into the market but has now started producing for the domestic market as well. Gitto is now retailed through a few hotel stores and a couple of special shops because "I like to know where my products are," she says.
"I started the company seven years ago in a small way so that I could stay in control but we've grown since then," explains the Jaipur-based designer.
Gitto's latest collection, on display at By the Vine, is characterised by loose, billowy cuts and bright, fresh colours that make for comfortable elegance. Natural fabrics and traditional block prints are her hallmark. "Most of the prints are inspired by miniatures. I re-draw them on a larger scale and modify them a little."
In the By the Vine collection, she's used Chanderi fabric, a mix of cotton and silk, hand woven in Madhya Pradesh. The result is brightly-coloured kurtas and scarves with the sheen of silk, cool enough for Chennai's heat. There are a couple of kurtas with delicate rogaan prints print done with adhesive and then sprinkled with tinsel or colour. There's also a line of elegant reversible scarves and stoles with Mughal-inspired prints. The kurtas are priced from Rs. 1,200 onwards.
Bags, which are tiny sequinned creations with mashroo a fabric from Gujarat trimming, are priced at Rs. 600.
By the Vine's latest also includes collections from Sabyasachi, Priyadarshini Rao, Gopi Vaid and Shilpa Jhaveri. The store is displaying pieces that Sabyasachi put up at the Lakme India Fashion Week. His clothes are rather zany. One crepe sari comes with rivets along the border, while an outfit comes with embroidered tiger-striped trousers and a bright red top with matching dupatta-stole.
Silk and taffeta in fuschia, green, blue and black combinations make up most of Priyadarshini Rao's line. The floral motifs and embroidery are rather bohemian and the collection of dresses, trousers, full-length skirts and tops is very young.
Gopi Vaid's short kurtas are priced between Rs. 2,200 and Rs. 3,400; bandini silks dominate with embroidery on the neck and sleeves.
Shilpa Jhaveri has used fabric with a cotton-cum-silk feel for her kurtas with simple embroidery and Jaipur stonework as embellishment.
By the Vine is at 4 and 5, Shyams Garden, 10, Khader Nawaz Khan Road, Nungambakkam, ph: 28330599.
Send this article to Friends by