It's a mud, mud world

Earthy designs

It's a mud, mud world

A working woman can never sit idle at home. And it is this notion that drove Gomti Sampath to become an entrepreneur. An ex-employee of IBM, Gomti was forced to quit her IT job after her second child, as she explains, “My elder daughter still holds a negative hunch — my mother cared more about her work than I — as I had admitted her to a day care centre. I did not want to repeat this mistake and hence forced myself to quit the job.”

Well, what next after quitting her job? As a person who liked to keep herself busy, she did not wish to sit at home and watch soap operas while her kids were away at school, which pushed her into starting ‘IRA Fashion’. A clothing and accessory brand, she started off sourcing ethnic apparel, including saris and kurthas, from the culturally rich villages of Gujarat and Rajasthan. “Sourcing ‘kutch’ embroidered saris and kurthas from Gujarat, mirror work and embroidered attire from Rajasthan, Banarasi saris, ‘patiala’ suits and ‘zari’ worked saris; I started selling them online through my Facebook page,” she recalls.

She further craved to create something on her own, which lead her into venturing the art of jewellery making. A self-taught jewellery artist, she is now an expert in terracotta and beaded jewellery making. “I scrutinised the web and YouTube and learnt the art of terracotta jewellery making. I met a wholesale dealer in Mahadevpura, who briefed me on the things I can try my hands on and thus began my journey to the accessory world,” she says.

The desired mud was bought and she went around looking for some moulds, after which the laborious task of designing jewellery on heated charcoal began. With much care, she burnt the moulded mud to get the desired black and red colours and this art soon became her forte. “My friends and family loved my work and they instantly became my clients. With word of mouth, I started getting orders for customisation and my free hands again began functioning enthusiastically,” she explains with joy.

Her interest in jewellery making grew further when she decided to make beaded jewellery, which became an instant hit among her clients. “To keep myself hooked on to the art, I bought artificial beads and stringed them together referring to the various DIY sites. The sketches and drawings done by my daughters too inspired and still inspire my jewellery designs,” she says.

A dotted mother, she did not want her kids to feel less cared for, which is why she says, “I indulge myself in my passion and business only when my kids are away. Once they are back from school, I do the usual homemaker chores. This is the reason why I do not wish to be a part of any flea markets as it will take away a lot of my time.” Gomti also sources various brass jewellery with ‘kundan’ and other precious stones from many villages across the country, on special requests from her customers. “I am in close ties with many artisans and through ‘IRA Fashion’, I provide them a platform to sell all their products,” she says.

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