Armed with his funky and ultra-luxe bags,Corto Moltedo seeks to woo the Indian fashionista
Corto Moltedo is clearly devoted to his craft. The founder of the six-year-old fashion house,Maison Corto Moltedo,clocked into the city at the unearthly hour of 3 am. Yet,the same afternoon,hes busy at work at the trendy Bungalow 8 in Colaba. He admits to being jetlagged and asks for a coffee. But when we suggest a photoshoot out on the busy streets,hes up for it.
The young Italian designer is in the city with a trunk show,hosted at Bungalow 8. After four days in Mumbai,the show will move to the capital,for another four days. Ive never been here before,but I know that Indians love colour and fashion. If they like what they see,they can come to my store in Paris and pick up something else too, he says. And it has to be Paris; although Moltedo launched his label only a few years ago,hes made it quite clear that hes aiming for exclusivity. His bags are,as Maithili Ahluwalia of Bungalow 8 tells us,for the discriminating fashionista looking to stand apart. Moltedo himself tells us,I dont want my bags to be copied and pasted everywhere. Hes not even made the bags available on popular shopping portals like Net-a-porter.com. In fact,so devoted is Moltedo to the idea of customisation and exclusivity,that each of the shopping bags at the store is made in his atelier. He says,When somebody shops at our store,we airbrush the customers name on the shopping bag. It makes it more personal.
Its obvious that Moltedo has picked up his work philosophy from his parentsLaura and Vittorio Moltedowho founded legendary Italian luxury label,Bottega Veneta. The BV label has long been synonymous with handcrafted bags in the softest leather and sophisticated hardware,but what really set the creations apart was the policy of having the labeling on the inside of the bag,rather than the outside. The younger Moltedos bags follow the same principle,with his logo being sewn inside. Its to show that the customer is the star,not the bag, he says. But the high quality and attention to detail is where the similarity ends. While BV has traditionally used a more muted palette and classic shapes,Maison Corto Moltedos bags are marked by their eye-popping hues and a fun,irreverent take on design. I was aiming for the pop-luxe label. Its a reflection of who I am and my great affinity to colours. So while on the one hand,theres the Daft Punk line of evening clutches (very rock and roll actually,with plenty of black and glitter),on the other,theres also the nostalgia-inducing Cassette Clutch series.
Growing up in a household where bags were table talk,the 33-year-old was fairly certain that he wanted to be part of the fashion industry. In my first line,I had everythingclothes,bags and shoes. But then I decided to focus on what I did best,which was designing bags. It took me sometime to open my atelier,but I did it myself, he reveals. Being the scion of the BV brand of course came with its own advantages and disadvantages. It opened many doors,while at the same time making it difficult to break away from family tradition. All in all,from Moltedos perspective,it wasnt such a bad thing when BV was sold to Gucci. It enabled me to get started on my own line, he says.