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Designer Style Quotient

Old Mastery




Delhi-based designer Ritika Bhasin Gupta re-visualises jewellery, breathing new life into outmoded

One can always create from one’s own creative drive, but the fact that remodeling makes the left out pieces wearable made sense to me.” – Ritika Bhasin Gupta, Reinventing Fine Jewellery, Jewellery Designer

The Retail Jeweller (TRJ): You started your career in the garments business. When and how did you sense the call to jewellery design?

Ritika Bhasin (RB): I started my clothing line 10 years back (which now is handled by my sister and called ‘RIDHIMA BHASIN’). During this time I realized that I had a knack for pairing up apparels with the right kind of jewellery. That’s when I took the plunge and started jewellery designing.

TRJ: Old jewellery is your forté. Was it a deliberate decision to go into redesigning and remodelling?

RB: One can always create from one’s own creative drive, but the fact that remodeling makes the left out pieces wearable made sense to me. I thought from a customer’s point of view, say a client who has jewellery sitting in her locker for some 10-15 years. She could never use it as designs were old and outdated- I design for them.

TRJ: Did you face customer reluctance when you entered redesigning?

RB: Most customers are very guarded about handing over their heirloom pieces. The pieces have great sentimental value to them, and design outcomes are not always predictable. Gaining my customers’ trust was, obviously, an early hurdle. With time, I have left that hurdle far behind. People appreciate my work.

TRJ: What is your design process when working upon an existing piece of jewellery?

RB: “Redesigning” doesn’t mean “breaking down”. Instead, one respects the old piece while giving it a fresh character. I study each piece carefully and devote time to imagining how I can make it different and better without taking the whole thing apart. First, after I have studied a piece carefully, I disclose my design plan to the customer. I give them the break up, gross weight etc. and we mutually decide the look the new piece would have.

TRJ: What is your design style?

RB: If you look at my pieces, my designs are very couture and suited for cocktail soirees. I generally come up with very bold interpretations and more than often the new piece is so different that the customer herself isn’t able to recognize that it was her piece. I prefer adding a lot of element to the exsisting designs, you can come to me with a regular traditional polki set and the final product would be very modern and chic.

TRJ: How do your customers react to your altogether new design language?

RB: Initial reactions are usually apprehensive. But clients come to me aware that their heritage jewellery does not match their fashion sensibility. They love how very striking and different their old jewellery looks after the redesign.

TRJ: Please tell us about one piece that is very close to your heart.

RB: This has to be my own story. When I got married, my grandmother gave me an old bangle. It was an antique design with a shiny gold look that I didn’t like. I redesigned it my way, and I use it still today.

TRJ: What are your future plans?

RB: I consider myself more of a consultant than a brand for jewellery. My focus for designing any piece is on the fact that it should match the wearer’s sensibilities and style. I do not want to open up a showroom like a brand for that would dilute my creative purpose.

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