Italian-born designer Gabriella Cortese started the Antik Batik label in 1992. Born in Turin, her Hungarian grandmother taught her how to embroider, while her mother embodied the model of elegance. In Bali, the thousand-year-old batik technique for printing silk inspired her to create her first range of pareos, wrap-around sarong-style skirts. Taking the word batik, Cortese added antik, “for the rhyme, and because it sounded good in all languages,” she said. In India, Cortese explored other techniques: embroidery, and bandhani: an artisanal dyeing process. After traveling the world for inspiration, she finally settled in Paris. Cortese’s designs are an eclectic mix of European and Indonesian influences that combine colorful prints with eye-catching embellishments.
Antik Batik always stays true to its DNA and philosophy of natural fabrics, hand-made garments and mixed ethnical references. It’s designed for a woman who likes to travel and mix cultures and eras.
Cortese borrows the label’s extravagance from Art Nouveau. Lustrous decorations, stylized floral patterns and geometric prints inspired by the Russian avant-garde fill her creations with history. Sought after by celebrities and all women looking for authenticity, ANTIK BATIK prints and light and fluid dresses and kaftans have become an emblem of bohemian-chic living.