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Lokvani Talks To Anuradha Sanyal

Nirmala Garimella

Share with us your background? 

My name is Anuradha Sanyal and I am the founder of Anuradha’s Collection. As a devoted mother of two, I used to dream of the day of being able to start my own venture. Now that my kids have grown up, I am finally getting a chance to begin. I have always had an eye for design and aesthetics and wanted to combine that with my love for traditional Indian wear. That includes items such as saris, to more modern looks such as tunic tops and scarves and other accessories.

               I personally choose every item from a few choice suppliers that have the highest standard for quality. This is the cornerstone of my business. Many of my products are from little known suppliers in rural parts of India who have mastered the art of Indian formal wear.

            I also love people. Nothing brings me more joy than building genuine relationships with those around me. I apply this same attitude to my business. Making sure a customer is satisfied is always my top priority.

 When did you get interested in starting your business?

 Anuradha’s Collection was founded in 2007 after a trip to the Surajkund Crafts Fair in Faridabad, a small town South of New Delhi. Inspired by the unique handmade handicrafts, household products and Kantha sarees, tunics and scarves - I decided to bring these designs to America and support local artisans in the process. Since then, I have sold hundreds of saris, scarves and handmade gifts - all sourced from the best materials in Delhi, Amristar, Jaipur, Bhuj, Baroda, Ahmedabad and Kolkata.

 How do you source your products?

My initial idea was to focus on unique handicrafts, handmade household products - everyday usable products that would look good in your glass cabinet. Proper sourcing requires trust and through the years I have built relationships with artisanal families in the small villages surrounding the major cities of India. Using local connections and slowly becoming a trusted buyer, I’ve found the best craftsmen that make some of the most spectacular and high quality products in the world.

 Are you supporting some livelihoods of these folks?

As of now, I am proud to say that my efforts are supporting communities in Bolpur near Kolkata  and communities in and around Haryana and Rajasthan who sell at the various crafts festival. I especially try to support women artists, since empowering them affects the socio-economic relationships in their region.  

 Can you share a personal story of one your visits to these centers

I met this young lady who was doing amazing embroidery during a visit to the crafts fair in Surajkund in Haryana in 2008. I started a conversation with her about her work and what she does. She showed me some of her finished products and I fell in love with her creations.

She is from a small village in  Gujrat. She makes beautiful pieces of wall hangings, clutch bags, bed spreads, small cushions and other accessories. Since then I have been sourcing a lot of supplies from her and she has become a very good friend. I try to help her by giving her orders every year which is helping her in her production line. She is very hard working and committed.

Through these experiences I have learned that some of the best work comes from the people who have the least. I am happy to sustainably support local artisans and will continue to do so as my business grows.

 Where can we shop for your creations?

I host regular holiday sale events in Lexington at the Historic Society. I travel and do trunks shows at selected cities where my friends host me.  I also attend annual cultural events across the US.

You can also shop online at https://anuradhas-collection.myshopify.com/ and connect with me via Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/anuradhascollection


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