Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Svastishri Lnu, Owner of The Kurta Lady, located in Monroe Township, NJ, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
The Kurta Lady is a brand created for the many South Asian ladies who reside abroad and wish to dress in the newest styles from their native region. Making this shop a one-stop shop for women is my goal.
My consumers will be able to purchase an entire appearance that I have carefully selected at reasonable and cost-effective costs. The Kurta Lady will be your go-to destination for anything from casual clothing to festive fun to romantic wedding attire.
Tell us about yourself
I felt the need for an affordable clothing line that would serve the Indian American diaspora locally. I could not find fun, casual and chic everyday wear Kurtas for a good price anywhere. And the saddest part was the Indian Kurtas I saw were out of fashion and looked dull or boring. That was my inspiration to start my own clothing line that would address all of this and more. My biggest motivation today is that I am able to go online and take Indian fashion to many more women.
I constantly strive to find affordable styles, fabrics, and designs that are fresh, vibrant, and new. I want women to feel good when they shop and wear these looks. I am a budget-conscious shopper, and I know how hard we work to make a living. I want to give my customers the best without pinching their wallets. When they are happy, I am happy.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
It was in July of 2004 that a very uncertain and young me landed in the USA. As a first-generation Desi, it was a difficult time on many accounts. The struggles were real. Those were days of no social media, and the internet culture was fairly new. I had zero fashion sense thanks to the lack of exposure and pretty much-bought anything labeled 'Clearance'!
To look back on my journey and to believe I have come to this far surprises me many times. Now that I have my own label and I proudly design and showcase case latest Indian wear for women here in the USA makes me beam.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Owning a business is a 24/7 commitment, and sometimes that's a tough act to balance. I am a mom of two boys, and like most working moms have to find the time to navigate their world along with mine. I work weekends and late nights to compensate for the time I give my family during the day/week. It is physically and emotionally very exhausting. You got to be resilient to survive all this.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
It's not an easy journey being an Entrepreneur. It comes with a lot of 'not knowing what to do and 'figuring out things as you go. The lessons learned, though, are valuable, and there is joy in knowing you did this all by yourself. My top 3 tips for anyone aspiring to go down this lane would be to:
- Know what you are getting yourself into.
- Read / Educate/ Research / Talk to people / Know the pros and cons of the business.
- Put your heart and soul into it coz only hard work makes a dream come true, and there is really no shortcut to success !!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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