Vandita Purohit believes that the design of the place where you live or work can significantly impact how you feel, affecting your productivity in many ways. “Design is supposed to interact with the people and spark conversation, creativity and enhanced productivity”, she says. Vandita’s friend Shivani Vyawahare, on the other hand, has always been inclined towards the furniture and refurbishing industry. The two minds collaborated in 2021 and founded Kalapentry, a design & refurbishing company that designs collaborative spaces for clients, refurbishes furniture & home décor and creates a sustainable line of interior products. “We are not just reinventing but also restoring the old”, Vandita says.
Vandita’s idea of refurbishing and repurposing furniture was validated when the first Garage Sale they organised in August 2021 got a great response. They also successfully designed a workspace for a design company earlier this year, another milestone in her entrepreneurial journey.
The team at Kalapentry
“At the heart of this success is my team. I look into design and strategy, and my co-founder Shivani Vyawahare is an architect. We also have a product designer and three independent professionals partner with us for projects. A team of carpenters, fabricators, painters and other vendors also work with us on a project basis”, she says.
Entrepreneurship is hard. You have to be in your best headspace to give your best. Mastering multitasking and wearing multiple hats as an entrepreneur is inherent. – Vandita Purohit
A crucial lesson that her entrepreneurship journey has taught her is that executing ideas at the right time is the key to successful entrepreneurship, and you need the right kind of funds for that.
Another essential factor contributing to their success is the organisational and time-management skills they apply daily. “We are heavily dependent on Google sheets for all accounting, progress mapping, strategy and timeline-based activities”, she says.
“Furniture and design is a capital-intensive business, and we are constantly finding ways to go lean, but sometimes it’s challenging to work to the best of your capabilities without funding”, she elaborates.
Does it get overwhelming at times? “It does and that’s when we pause a little and focus on our mental health. Entrepreneurship is hard, and you have to be in your best headspace to give your best. Mastering multitasking, wearing multiple hats as an entrepreneur is inherent”, she says.
Advice to fellow entrepreneurs
Her advice to other women entrepreneurs is to be unstoppable. “Carve an identity of your own and let’s make this world an even better place.”, she says.
Women need to have a solid support system in place to thrive as entrepreneurs. She agrees but also believes that women must become their biggest support systems. “You first need to build yourself, make yourself capable of taking care of yourself, and you are your biggest support system”, she says.
What’s there in the pipeline for Kalapentry? “We are organising a big Garage Sale in January where we will be inviting a lot of businesses selling sustainable decor products and vintage furniture, restoring the old. There would be a conference on design & sustainability, a flea market, art installations, an auction of old furniture, food & music. It’s going to be a one-of-its-kind festival of Sustainable Design and Decor”, she informed. Besides that, the entrepreneurs are also working on a product line for home decor and furniture.