Queen Bee – The Determined Doll-maker of Queen Bee Crafts

When she was around six years old, Radhika was playing outside and fell, hurting her leg. She limped home and everybody thought it was a regular wound that would cure and go away. Soon, the pain persisted and the parents brought her to the hospital where they found it was a bone fracture, and the […]

Slowthreads – Growing the Market for Slow Fashion

  Scores of entrepreneurs set up stalls and do brisk business in pop-up events. But rarely does one make an instant connect with the founder, so much so you end up not only becoming a loyal customer but also see a potential friendship blooming. Well, this happened with Archana Ravi, the owner of Slowthreads, a […]

Madras Mandi – From Harvest to Stores Within 12 Hours

Chennai’s enduring love for vegetables and fruits is well-known. Though we love handpicking fresh produce, the city has gracefully embraced the shift toward online purchase in recent years. Madras Mandi has been harnessing this potential since 2020. Beyond delivering quality, the venture also seeks to reduce wastage in the fresh produce supply chain making the […]

WEDO – A Resource Hub For Women Entrepreneurs

Moving on from two successful businesses, Kadambari Umapathy is now spearheading the third one, Women’s Entrepreneurship Development Organisation (wedo.org.in). Her challenge-riddled story is the stuff of movies and the fact that she’s still so full of plans for her organisation and the empowerment of women, speaks volumes about her zest for action and never-say-die spirit. […]

Imaginethat – Designing Holistic Retail Shopping Experiences

Breaking into the retail visual merchandising scene in Tamil Nadu through their startup Imaginethat, duo Dhurgha and Ashok are channeling their creativity and overcoming challenges to grow at a steady clip. When it comes to fashion and style Tamil Nadu is seen as being conservative and lagging a step behind the rest. The popular perception […]

Athma Laya – Fulfilling Women’s Aspiration to Dance

The chatter of excited women in their forties, fifties and some older, livened up this one salon in Alwarpet, as they went about getting their makeup and hair done. The scene reminded one of restless, eager children preparing for their school annual day celebrations. It came as a pleasant surprise that they were dressing up […]

Games Anchoring Families to Indian Culture and Values

“I asked a group of school children where their source of drinking water was. Many responded with answers like, “our RO machine,” and “the water tanker,” and so on. Not one could name the lake or river from which their water was captured. I was not shocked, but very disappointed that these children have absolutely […]

The Madras Trunk – Redefining Kolhapuris, a Fashion Classic

Nithila Arun of The Madras Trunk has managed to redesign the classic to create a vibrant range of kolhapuris, attracting reapeat buyers from all over the country.  Kolhapuris. They were a rage in the 80s when coolly casual folks paired them with blue jeans and a breezy kurta while extolling Satyajit Ray’s genius. Cut to […]

Traditional Kitchenware Makes a Comeback

In the hum of daily life, we often overlook ancestral treasures hiding in plain sight. A couple of years ago, Ravisankar VM stumbled upon utensils (paathirams in Tamil) that proved to be family heirlooms and since then his mission has been to introduce such vessels to the younger generation, making them aware of their heritage. […]

Empowering the Elderly

‘Old is Gold’ The ‘Old is Gold’ store is located in a traditional home with easy access on the ground floor, making it comfortabe for the elderly to browse and shop at their own pace. As the name suggests, the brand serves the elderly, offering products that put them more in control of their lives. […]

Repurposing Textiles into Innovative Products.

“There was a dye plant next to my house in Erode,” starts Shanmugavel, founder of Fabrula, a young start up that is exploring ways of recycling fabric into useful products. “The plant leached chemical colours into the water, and I would always wonder how we as a community tolerated this.” From pondering about such instances, […]

Coffee Meets Carnatic Music

Carnatic musician Akshay Vaidyanathan orchestrates a harmonious blend of coffee and music with his homegrown brand, Kāpi Kottai.   Picture this. You are sitting in your favorite corner of your space, and the mellifluous notes of the raag Khamās fills the air, making your private world an entrancing space. You take a sip from the […]

Rebelle with a Cause

Promoting better vaginal health through cloth-based menstrual pads IMalinee Saravanan was chatting with her friends at one of their casual monthly meet-ups in Salem, when their talk turned to vaginal health. One of them revealed that she had been suffering from a vaginal rash that she thought was chronic, but found relief in just a […]

Quirky Creativity in Daily Life

MASH COLLECTIONZ – A curated artsy lifestyle collection No two things at the Mash Collectionz store are the same. Each piece from her collection of quaint handmade artifacts, block-print dresses, mosaic bowls to repurposed furniture and quirky quote boards, is a unique slice-of-life art. The range is also a reflection of the founder—Mahalakshmi Rajendran’s personality […]

SANAL: Finding sustainable replacements for plastics

“Don’t use plastics is probably the most useless statement or advice,” begins Dakshnamoorthy Durairaj, founder at SANAL (Sustainable Alternative for Non-polluting Acclimate Living), who promotes a positive adoption to plastic alternatives. “SaNal” is derived from the Tamil phrase Samudhaya Nalanil (for the benefit of the community.) Dakshnamoorthy runs SANAL as both physical and online stores, […]

Where cultures collide and empathy abounds in children’s tales

The Little Dipper Publishing, led by independent publisher Anusha Veluswamy, is dedicated to producing children’s literature that celebrates diverse cultures, fosters empathy, and offers diverse representation In a world where big publishing houses dominate the literary scene, it’s easy to overlook the growing number of indie publishers quietly revolutionising the industry. These small but mighty […]