Stories go a long way in keeping a tradition alive. Fabriclore keeps the textile tradition alive in its craft — a craft which is the story of its artisans, their legacy and how they pass it to the future generations weaved, dyed or printed in fabric. Culturally rich and diverse in the fabrics they offer, the founders — Anupam Arya, Sandeep Kumar, and Vijay Sharma embarked on their journey of reviving textile traditions in April 2016 through their online portal — Fabriclore.com. Today, it is one of the most prominent brands of artisanal and contemporary fabrics in India.
Sandeep’s earlier venture brought home the insight of fabric being bought online. Decision to build a brand entirely on fabric was reinforced by their initial market research. Each state had much to offer, with families and even entire communities immersed in textile crafting — the diversity was breathtaking, yet mostly untapped, unknown and difficult to source. Unlike the usual stories of entrepreneurship, the three founders did not leave the security of their jobs during the initial phase of their business. Instead, they put their heart and soul in an experiment that soared, and subsequently became their full-time venture.
Cut from the same cloth, the founders as Anupam puts it shared the same ‘ideological wavelength’ much before they put their complementary skill sets to work. With functional roles delineated and distributed, the three ensured that all aspects of the business was given equal importance. Even now, Anupam concentrates on marketing, technology-integration, and communication. Vijay spearheads all the executive and financial decisions. And Sandeep coordinates with the 500+ artisans, freelance designers, and in-house designers from 12 different states on product procurement and development. Together, they have ensured that the rest of the team came from top-tier organisations — to ensure quality work. Spilling the magic beans Anupam remarks, ‘We have always believed that business continuity is more important than exponential growth.’ Hence all aspects of their business are strictly in-house, except manufacturing.
Demonetisation and the introduction of GST had been hurdles in past, but Fabriclore navigated these successfully, eventually emerging stronger. In all these years, challenges of growth and brand differentiation have helped them in being true to what they offer. A customer-focused brand to their core, they put tremendous focus on the visual quality of the brand. In many ways they remain the pioneers in selling fabric online; fabric which is visually appealing and easy to find on the webbed virtual world. They have found their customers predominantly among females with a desire to experiment; or in search of fusion of traditional and contemporary fabrics, or the ones spellbound by the charm of traditional textile.
Since the very beginning they have tried to capture the artisan’s ingenuity in their choices. Over time, they began to incorporate contemporary designs, and reformulate the existing designs into different silhouettes or layout. Fabriclore envisions to grow into the undisputed brand of fabrics in both contemporary and artisanal domains, having an online and offline presence simultaneously. A single success formula to them is humbug.
Just like the plurality in Fabriclore’s fabric, its designs and dyes, stitches and threads as well as its source — the cities with textile heritage; there is plurality in the tapestry of entrepreneurship too. So says Anupam, ‘[There is] no fixed template on the road of entrepreneurship — everyone has their own unique story and success recipes.’
Based on our interviews: By Shrishti Abrol
About the Startup:
Fabriclore i.e. Fabric + Lore (literally means traditional knowledge of fabrics) is attempting to revive India’s rich textile traditions on online medium. Fabriclore in collaboration with modern designers is constantly inspiring creative people to achieve stand-out boho and fusion designs in both clothing and home furnishing. Further more, the traditional fabric merchant heritage of founding team allows them to pay meticulous attention while curating each piece of fabric that they exhibit at our online store. These fabrics are sourced directly from the masters of the traditional craft and even from the traditional keepers.