Swastika Collection was born out of passion to create something unique for women, with the six yards. The love for saree brought a teacher by profession and a sabbatical later, into the boutique business. Located near the airport at Kolkata, Swastika Collection was established fourteen years ago with a vision in mind – of that to dress the women of all genres and age in the six yards of elegance. Entrepreneur Sarbari Dutta started her retail operations and it’s been a long journey so far. Her main forte being the saree, highlights the Indian tradition in various ways.
Here, Abhrajita asks Sarbari Dutta about her adventure into the retail business and her life.
AM: So, how did you start the journey?
SD: I started the journey fourteen years back after my daughter was born. I love sarees, especially silk ones. Since, a long time I had this burning desire in me, to do something on my own and this was it.
I started my journey with fifty sarees. I had organized an exhibition of sorts from the ground floor of my home. The stock of saree flew off the racks like hot cakes. I managed to sell off forty five saree in three days. That is how Swastika Collection was born.
AM: Who has inspired you, in your journey so far?
SD: My husband has inspired me immensely and so has my mother-in-law, in terms of emotional support.
AM: Tell us more about your collection.
SD: I am dealing in all kinds of saree. You can find a variety of saree at my retail store, ranging from Bangalore silks and Tusser Silks with a lot of kantha work. I stock a wide variety of saree to suit every age and strata of society.
A huge variety of traditional saree have been launched for the Durga Puja 2019. Apart from Bangalore silks and Tusser Silks, you will also get Kattan silk, Gadwal silk, Murshidabad Silk in various finishes. You will find a lot of block prints, applique and hand painting on the sarees. You will also get Dhakai and Jamdanis in a wide range of designs and colors. I also customize the designs and texturization, if the client wishes to.
I stock sarees for regular wear, as well as festival wear. I am also garnering a lot of response for gowns. For regular wear, I have getting huge response for the cotton collection – dress materials and suit pieces. I have a wide collection of Bagru prints, Jaipur prints and Embroidery on Plain Cotton is also one of the Best-sellers.
We are also into dyeing raw materials and have a workshop in Shantiniketan, catering to customer demands in the city.
AM: How are to strategizing your brand in the highly competitive clothing market?
SD: I am mainly retailing from my store, which is in a prominent location near Kolkata airport. I also post my collection on facebook and co-ordinate with prospective clients through Whatsapp.
Apart from that, I have participated in various exhibitions and hold pop-ups. I have already done two exhibitions ate Sarojini Naidu College, of which I am an alumna.I have diversified and also stock Suit pieces, Kurtis, Wraparound skirts apart from handmade jewellery, which is trending nowadays. I have also participated in Sabala Mela.
You will get jewellery in gold and silver finish, oxidized jewellery and gamcha jewellery.
Prices for sarees start from 600/800 INR for regular wear to 15,000 INR for silks and exclusive range.The Kantha embellished range is between 7500 – 9000 INR. Dress materials range between 400 INR for cottons to 2600 INR for Embroidered Jaipur pieces. Kurtis range between 650 INR – 2500 INR. The range is priced competitively and is value for money. My main motto is customer satisfaction.
AM: What are your future plans?
SD: I am myself responsible for the entire Sales and Marketing. I will definitely plan to go online, as that is the call of the hour. Going online will also increase my client base in the city and may be beyond.
AM: Message for Today’s Women:
SD: All women should stand on their own feet, not only for financial, but also emotional independence.