I was once in Dubai walking along the enticing show windows in the Great Dubai Mall and something rather interesting caught my attention.It was a teal coloured formal male leather shoe. I looked up to check the name of the shop and it read Berlutti. Curiosity took me into the store, and strange enough, all the colourful merchandise was only for men. As I was mesmerised by the variety it had to offer, I was greeted by an extremely well groomed gentleman. He took me through the history of the brand and the way they distinguish themselves from the rest ; this was where I was taken by surprise…… I was shown a shade card and was asked to pick a colour.
So while in other stores the salesmen ask you to pick a product, here I was asked to pick a colour for the product. What was interesting was that I could pick any design on display and have it dyed in the colour of my choice. Being a woman, I flooded the salesman with questions like…..” can I mix colours?”,” can you also use gradients?”, “how long will it last?”, ” what happens if the colour wears off?”,” what if I chose a shade and then don’t like it when i see it physically?” blah blah blah.
For me leather predominantly came in shades of Brown or Black and more recently, very select primary and secondary colours. I have never had a choice to pick a colour for my own bags or shoes, except for having to choose from what was on offer, leave alone for men.The gentleman at the store patiently answered all my questions and which is more, I was more than convinced to buy…… but then I hit a road block with my bank balance! The final nail in the coffin..the price…..He said the starting range is 5000DH which is close to INR 90K. As a struggling entrepreneur any indulgence sure seems to be beyond the horizon.
I didnt want to disappoint the salesperson by not actually buying as it didn't fit my wallet then , so I politely asked him whether they had a store in India where I could buy. He replied,” Ah you are from India!!! We don't have a store but we sent our shoemaker to what's his name... Shahrukh Khan, to take his size and got shoes made for him….I laughed and assured him that I would surely come back with my husband to get the exact size and his shade preference.
However the experience opened my eyes to a different world of male accessories that was colourful, classy and very interesting but of course it came at a price!;-)
I wonder why they don't have such an offering for women yet……maybe because we would always ask for a shade that is off the shade card or maybe because they are yet to figure out ....What Women Really Want!!!