"Rapidly Changing Customer Behaviour and Technology Capabilities Are Biggest Challenges for Any Start-up Venture": Vatsala Chopra

What is your assessment about the home furnishing market in India. According to you, what are the factors propelling growth in this segment?

 The scope of home furnishing in India is growing every year due to the rise in contemporary designs, increasing number of households, growing demand for branded and premium quality products which are innovative and rich in style. 

Rising interest for tasteful furniture has led to an increase in demand for premium quality cushion covers, table runners and table matts over monotonous plastic matts and runners. Over the past few years home furnishing market has been dominated by good fabrics like linen, silk and cotton which adds superiority in the product.  

Number of homeowners has increased significantly in the recent years, especially in emerging economies, thereby spurring a growth interest among these owners. Additionally, home decor products have gained a high acceptance among the home owners who want to renovate the home interior and exterior. One of the major reason for growth in home furnishing industry is growth in the urban population, exposure to different culture around the globe, as urban culture influences an individual’ living style.


 How did the brand start and the journey so far? 

Our textile business started as an exports firm which is a 25 year old firm now. The vision of the business is to promote the craftsmanship of India all over the world.  We have weaving units in Bengal, Gujrat, Varanasi, Kashmir and Punjab which helps us to serve the purpose of giving  the best quality of product. We mostly deal in the handloom industry. Looking at  the artisans and the weavers work so hard to craft master pieces of fabrics was an eye opener for me. That’s when I decided to cherish the art and bring back the traditional designs and elegant heritage in India. I wanted to establish a market where the firm could provide 100% pure hand woven material in khadi - cotton , silk , linen & wool along with the intricacy of the hand work. Therefore there was nothing better than opening my own store “VEAVE’S STUDIO” to showcase the concepts not just by providing a normal fabric but leading towards sustainability as well.


 We have a store in Varanasi showcasing our exclusive  range of fabrics, scarfs, dupattas, table runners, table mats, tissue boxes and cushion covers. We strive to be a caring and a responsible cooperate brand to our society as well as our customers. We believe in becoming a leader in the furnishing and fashion-knit industry by empowering the skills in terms of hand woven fabrics in order to provide total customer satisfaction.


Tell us about your distribution in the online as well as offline space. Going forward, what are the plans to scale- up the distribution?

Veave’s Studio has been striving hard to attain customer satisfaction by delivering nothing but the best, by means of providing highest quality of resources. We have been promoting the true essence of heritage by bringing our collections to the public domain through exhibitions, publications, through social media, the website and our store in Varanasi. We are planning to open up stores in the metro cities and are also looking at growing into other countries as well. As and when our demand rises our distribution will follow accordingly. 


 According to you, what are the challenges as far as furniture retailing is concerned?

 Rapidly changing customer behaviour and technology capabilities continue to transform the retail industry. The home furnishings sector is no exception, as it does have some aspects that adds challenges in their retail sectors. 


Majority of the brands in the furnishings, home decor and lifestyle sector are facing challenges like local vendors, online portals and entry of the international players. For example availability of home furnishing online hinders the customers to experience the touch and feel of the product, thereby creating confusion in their minds . Also various options available in this field , customers are always unsure when it comes to choosing amongst them.


 Who do you see as your competition within the same space?

 We have always kept the quality as our priority. We as a premium textile brand strive hard to promote the rich Indian heritage in terms of skills and culture. We initially started with fabrics for garments and scarfs which later motivated me to expand our product line called Teori Living which deals in dinning furnishing. Hence we started using fabrics which are of linen silk and cotton with intricate hand embroidery thereby converting them into cushion covers, table mats table runners and tissue boxes.


Our concept for Teori Living, dinning furnishing and cushion covers includes block prints, screen prints, chikenkari, jamdhani and kantha. Such kind of designs in home furnishing is rare to find thereby giving us an edge over our competitors. 


At last, kindly highlight your growth plans?

 With the onset of  Vevea’s Studio store in Varanasi in 2015, we always had a vision to expand our exclusivity in metro cities. To know the demand for our products we have been participating in premium exhibition taking place in majors cities of India. Witnessing  good response in Scarfs and fabrics inspired me to expand our product line called Teroi Living - cushion covers and dining furnishing  (table mats, table runners and tissue boxes). 

 We also aspire to enter into the field of unique apparels with hand woven and hand embroidered  in sustainable fabrics. Our main aim is to promote the artisans and the weavers from different part of India and bring the delicacy of their designs under one roof that is Veave’s Studio. 


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