“I am in the world of fashion and fashion keeps changing.”
‘Fashion’ was in her mind right from the beginning. Ms Geeta Jain, from Indore explained how her family business involved fabrics, jeans as they were wholesalers. So, it was quite natural that she was lead into this world. She talks openly to Shree Lahiri on how the germ of this idea came to her, how her team of women are working together, the courses she conducts and more….
- How was it in the beginning when you got into this business?
In the beginning, I had joined up with my cousin sister and we started working for the NGO – Mahila Bal Vikas Mantralaya. Here we used to do ‘sewa’ for women and children like helping them out, giving gifts during festivals and so on. Then, later on – I thought why not start something of my own? And, it was quite logical that I chose the world of fashion, since my family has been into various businesses in this area. So I started working in my Boutique called ‘Origin’ in Indore, where I live. Actually I had this boutique before and used to make ladies’ garments. Today I stitch ladies’ tops, kurtas, skirts, party gowns, saree blouses etc.
- Where did you get the funds?
Initially I worked with my cousin, as she asked me to join. But then I suddenly developed cervical problems and my health was affected. So I focused on the boutique. My sister’s funds helped me to get the rented place , which is just two kms from where I live. Then customers increased too. I also conduct courses for ladies who want to take up this job – so they are taught designing, cutting, stitching – all the functions of a boutique. It is still going on.
- How large is your team and how do you encourage them?
There are six ladies in my team. The work is divided among them and we work as a team. We are like a family and we help each other. On festivals, we try to have our own celebrations like in Diwali, Holi etc. In Indore, there is the Malwa Utsav in March, where we participated and the sales are quite good.
- What are the changes you see today, in the business that you are in?
I am in the world of fashion and fashion keeps changing. It’s been 10 years since I started. First it was salwars, churidars, suits that were in fashion and today, it is leggings, kurtis, gowns, tops that are in demand. Today ladies take extra care with their clothes and they spend more and make special clothes for festivals like Navratri, Diwali etc. Ladies have become more fashionable. They have their own choice. They even see patterns online and then they ask us to copy them.
- Are you aware of government schemes?
No I have not availed of any government scheme. There’s a lot of running around involved like to banks etc. I feel I am getting along fine with family support.
- Have you been trained for this business? Would you like to get some more training?
I have been trained. I did Fashion Designing course form NIFT in Indore. If I do get more training and I will get more scope to increase my business, then I will be interested.
- What were the problems you faced in your journey?
In the beginning I faced problems in the family. My husband was busy with his job and my daughter was 8 years old. My shop is in a residential area, near the airport and I stay in Kalani Nagar, which is 2 kms away. But since I got into my family business, I managed.
- Where do you see your business going in the next 3 years?
I really want to increase my business. And, I want to continue with my training classes. I tried to start a college for fashion design, but I could run it only for a few months as there were many problems. The costs involved were high, and the students were also less, so I had to discontinue. Then I wanted to take a larger space, and even got offers, but they were far away. So, I decided to remain here. But I want my showroom to be bigger and widen the scope of classes.