Jewellery designer Karishma Jain reveals the secrets to being a success in the bling industry. MADHUMITHA SRINIVASAN
At 26, jewellery designer Karishma Jain is already a name to reckon with, catering to high-profilers and fashionistas. But what’s more surprising is that she has not done any course related to her field. Though some might say that being from a family of renowned jewellers — Lalchand Hastimal Jeweller — it must have been an obvious choice, the determination to stick it out in a tough, competitive environment and a natural talent that sees her designs attract eye balls is to her credit. Here’s Karishma in a chat with NXg…
Was getting into jewellery designing a natural decision since your family is also in the business?
I completed my Masters in International Business Management from the U.K. When I came back I would spend time in our store. Even before going to the U.K., I would sit with my father and help out in the daily business. He always encouraged me and insisted I help him. While visiting an international jewellery show, the thought of starting a new brand name with a unique designing concept came into being.
Were you fascinated by jewellery from childhood?
Initially I wasn’t interested getting into the family business but, as I started thinking about it, the interest developed and dad pushed me into it and guided me. He has always been a great support.
How did you prepare yourself for this career, academically and experience wise?
I haven’t done any professional course in jewellery; it was all by experience. I learnt from my father who has won awards for his designs and is director of All India Gem and Jewellery federation (GJF) of India; belonging to a family that’s been into jewellery since 1901; my brothers’ support and learning from them … all this helped me create a name for myself. Qualification is not as important as talent used at the right place. It is not that a person without a degree can’t be a successful businessman. My biggest example is my father, who has only studied till std. XII, but has immense knowledge about diamonds and designing. Many people come to him for advice on rough diamonds.
Tell us about your collections. And the one you’ll be showing at Chennai.
My collection is trendy yet economical and contemporary yet traditional. It is easily wearable earrings, chandbalis, handcuffs in 92.5 silver and gemstone accessories. At every exhibition I make sure I add something new to the collection. This time, along with the traditional and Italian silver gift items, I have introduced art painting jewellery.
One advantage and disadvantage of being a youngster in this field…
The advantage of being a youngster is that clients feel that my jewellery connects to their taste. Disadvantage is that often there is the apprehension that my jewellery is fake. I need to keep reassuring that it is 92.5 sterling silver, which is gold plated, and that, like gold, even silver has a resale value. Because of my age, approaching stores for business development works against me.
In your journey so far, what is your one significant achievement?
I have just started; still a long way to go and much to learn. Apart from the business angle, a part of my profit is given to the needy and visually-challenged children. The smiles it brings when they are given what they need is an achievement for me.
Youngsters and jewellery; your take on the trend.
Earlier, accessories weren’t as important as they are now. Today youngsters are independent and they choose what they want. They love to accessorise whether it is with Indian or western attire. One chain of gold links can change an outfit’s look and make it trendier. One can turn a normal day look to a party look with the right accessories. That’s what they want. That’s why youngsters are the target customers.
I am getting into heavy polki sets. We are also coming out with the lightest 22kt temple jewellery made in our factory.
Inspiration for your designs…
Any object or a graphic. A little bit of modification changes the whole look. I look for inspiration in art, objects, a drawing done by a kid… pretty much anything and bring them together and create designs. It’s fun to work in this way.
Any celebs clients?
Upsana Kamineni (of the Apollo Group) who is also a good friend, many socialites and Tollywood stars.
Where do you retail? How can clients across the country reach you?
I retail from our own store Lalchand Hastimal Jeweller in Secunderabad. A subsidiary within that exclusively retails my brand of jewellery: Karishma Jain. I also supply to designer stores in Hyderabad like Anahitha and Tamara, and Nivedita Saboo in Pune. Besides, I show at various exhibitions. This is my first time in Chennai though.
Contact Karishma at: 040-27703197; +91-9885544402
Website: karishmajewels.com (under construction)
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