Preeti Agarwal is skilled at customising footwear on the spot. Her other interest is jewellery designing

What are the things you could do in 20 minutes? Get dressed, have a shower, cook a meal or... get footwear of your choice made right in front of you. Be it laces, frills, gemstones or denim, Preeti Agarwal and her staff, much like the shoemaker and the elves, create whatever pattern you want to adorn your feet with.

Preeti, who started her label Aticute in 2008, says the idea of customising footwear on the spot came to her while she was watching a sub sandwich being made. "Just like we decide the ingredients that go into it, and it's quickly put together and served, I felt there was nothing like allowing my clients to choose their footwear and getting it ready in 20 minutes. There are about 20 designs to choose from," says Preeti.

Providing variety

Aticute specialises in both jewellery and footwear. Jewellery, the young designer says, is what she loves. As for footwear designing, one of the reasons she got into it was because she has flat feet and finds it difficult to get variety. "Instead of wearing the same pattern of sandals, I wanted to make them look different. Besides, I make footwear for people with diabetes and acupressure flats. I also have a range of sizes, be it for tiny feet or really large ones." Her tagline? ‘Aticute's design + Your freedom of choice = happy and healthy feet!'

Contrary to popular belief, Preeti feels Chennai is no longer a city where people are content with staid accessories. She notices that people have really begun to experiment. "Though black and white are ever popular, my clients also opt for shoes in bright shades such as purple, red and blue… and bling is, of course, a favourite," she smiles, adding, “at the end of the day all that matters is what you can carry off with confidence.”

Preeti gives every pair of footwear she customises a unique look. There are Kolhapuris in denim, sandals with dainty lace toe straps, flats with colourful satin rosettes…no two pairs are the same. Her clientele comprises women aged anywhere between 13 and 60. “It was desire more than anything else that made me take up designing. It's always good to have varied career options.”

On the jewellery front too, Aticute has quite a few collections. Preeti's latest line La Nature is inspired by Nature. Each ornament has a story behind it, she says. Her collection is available at Adoniya, Silk Worm Boutique, Asharaa, Envy Me and Button Green.

For details, log onto www.aticute.com

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