Breaking Boundaries to Bring India’s Authentic Handicrafts to Global Market

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Sachchit forlife - Shina Rai

“Where do you see yourself in 5 years?”

This interview question attempts to analyze a candidate’s future perspective in regards to the applied job position. In each discussion, the interviewer is looking to hear a generic sentence that shows that the prospect is willing to dedicate their whole self to work. But what if the candidate’s answer is ‘entrepreneurship’? Would it get them the job? In the case of Shina Rai, a corporate working individual at the time, the reply got her rejected from the job position. However, the same rejection also resulted in encouraging Shina to quit her commercial job life and take the first step toward setting up a business.

Hailing from a decent town in Uttar Pradesh, India, Shina had always been fascinated by the handicraft products from her home city, Saharanpur. While growing up, she saw various items lined up against the shops, made and sold by the shopkeepers themselves. As Shina grew up, she understood that while this amazing craftsmanship is distinct, it had still not reached the masses outside Saharanpur. Although working in corporate, it was then that she decided to venture into the world of business and take the beauty of such handicraft items beyond Saharanpur’s border.

Taking Local to Global

Three years ago, Shina, along with her husband, started Sachchit forlife Pvt. Ltd. to turn her dream of expanding Saharanpur’s handicraft market to other regions of India and the globe. With nearly no experience in setting up a business venture, Shina turned to her father and In-law for support. “Both my father and father-in-law are businessperson and proved to be my guiding light in the early days of Sachchit forlife. With their assistance and INR 50,000, my husband and I set up the foundation stone of Sachchit forlife,” says Shina. Since its inception, Sachchit forlife has partnered with thousands of small and medium craftsmen to bring their creations to people worldwide. Initially, the firm offered only a few handicrafts items, which has now increased to include 5000+ products. Today, the brand deals with wooden artefacts from Saharanpur like wooden decorative, kitchen cutlery and tableware products as well as Rajasthani decorative and minakari work and marble kitchenware products. Other popular items on Sachchit forlife’s website are Brass statues and decorative from Moradabad, UP, Wooden handmade jewellery from Nagina, UP, and Kashmiri Paper-Mache artwork and pashmina stoles and shawls. It has also collaborated with third-party logistics to ensure timely and damage-free goods delivery to all the customers worldwide.

Sachchit forlife brings freshly designed handmade products to the customers directly from the artists without middlemen’s involvement. Its mission is to reach out to India’s soul (rural places) to bring out the extremely talented and worthy craftsmen in front of an audience and provide them with the platform to showcase their craftsmanship. But before an artist could sell their products on the Sachcit forlife online platform, they need to go through the onboarding procedure. For the same, Shina has mapped out a detailed plan that includes meeting the artist before signing them a deal and putting forth terms and conditions agreed to upon by both parties. “Our aim is to give craftsmen and makers their due in the entire product development and selling process. We ensure that the legal terms favour the artists and receive the deserved amount and recognition for their hard work,’ Shina elaborates.

The Secret Lies in the Name

For most brands, their name reflects the work they do. For Sachchit, it is to bring out the essence of crafting and artistic skills to the fore. With the idea to uplift handicrafts business and artisans in India to reach unexplored heights, ‘pure soul’ Sachchit was born. “Nothing could be as unadulterated as handmade products with genuine love, care, and skill. Sachchit’s meaning captures just that,” Shina explains proudly. Many customer testimonials and positive reviews on Sachchit forlife’s website only add credibility to the authentic and minimal handicrafts products they offer.

The brand is also dedicated to providing equal opportunity to women who are skilled at crafting and designing to give them a chance to convert their talent to monetary. Although Sachchit forlife has already supported several women in getting their due, the company is continuously working toward reaching more homemakers and helping them enter the handcrafts business.

The future endeavours of Sachchit forlife include continuing its brilliant work and bringing authentic handicrafts product to the national as well as global market. Having already established a trusted export business into London, Australia, and the Netherlands, the brand is now eyeing expanding to other international markets to ship India’s handmade items. Simultaneously, the brand is proactively looking for talented and skilled artisans across the country for partnership and bring their products to global market. “Even with such extensive future plans, our whole focus is on bringing the individual artists and skilled homemakers to the forefront. All of our products include information about its maker, and people can read more about the artists we work with on our social media pages,” concludes Shina.

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