Mrs. Shibani Jain is a designer by education, being alumni from NID Ahmedabad. In the last 25 years, she has worked with the corporate sector and grown 2 sizeable companies from scratch. She is now involved in growing Baaya Design, which was found in 2009.
- Can you recall a significant moment or sign that propelled you to change careers and build your own brand?
I had a very lucrative corporate career as design head in a multimedia e-learning firm. I was doing very well, but within me, there was a sense of dissatisfaction. I did not quite believe that what I was doing, was something that I could enjoy doing for a life time. I felt that I had to find something that gave me a greater sense of creative satisfaction and purpose. I got into the crafts industry by starting a dot com. Here, I got a sense of purpose working with the artisans of India- they needed help to understand the market and to preserve their skills. The vast arena of crafts in India, made me feel that the learning here was unending and possibilities were immense. And that is how I started Baaya- where the creative, social and learning skills came together. I work with highly specialized artisan skills for interiors and thereby help them innovate and generate livelihoods.
- What is your design philosophy? Where do you seek inspiration? What continues to facilitate your growth as a creative individual?
My design philosophy is to use the Indian aesthetics and culture and map it to modern day environments. I seek inspiration from our traditional arts, architecture, cultural habits, etc. What continues to facilitate my growth is the ever expanding base of learning – there is so much to learn about handicrafts- the socio-cultural background, the artisans and their skills, production methods, applications in new markets. It’s a never ending cycle of learning.
- How do you manage to innovate designs yet keeping contemporary expectation of your clientele in mind?
I use my design thinking and training to innovate the traditional styles, themes, processes. I combine modern day preferences into the cultural ethos to create a new language in everything that we produce.
- Could you define your aesthetic in 3 words?
India, Fusion, Color
- What do you believe it is about your work that intrigues people and keeps them loyal?
Our constant innovation and new range that we bring out regularly in the market. Also, the chic, unusual styling that we provide for contemporary spaces.
- Where do you see yourself in the near future, let’s say 2-5 years?
In 2-5 years, Baaya should be working in more cities, going international and impacting many more artisans. Baaya needs to be the most vibrant art and artisan platform possible in the world.
In conversation with Shibani Jain, Founder & CEO, Baaya Design