Cupcakes and Closet believes in “Dress to Impress”. It launched in 2011 as a Facebook page with a motive of providing trendy and affordable fashion at your doorstep, the unique brand today has a following of more than 70,000 fans. Meet Aneesha Dalal and Nirali Malji, Co-founder and Director, at Cupcakes and Closet Pvt. Ltd.
Despite not having any formal education in fashion designing or business management, Aneesha and Nirali followed their passion and joined hands. At an early age they took that extra step and that extra mile to fulfil their desire to become an entrepreneur with a common love- fashion! They retail clothes, bags, swimwear and accessories for young fashion conscious women, women who want access to a wide selection of current fashion trends at an affordable price.
How did you’ll come to be an entrepreneur?
Nirali completed her Bachelors in Law and Aneesha completed her Bachelors in Chemical Engineering. We didn’t study Fashion Designing or Business Management. We’ve always heard people say, to start a business you have to go to a bank, have a business plan, and borrow startup capital. If we would have started a business in debt, we wouldn’t have been able to get up in the morning. We started our company with zero capital since we worked on a pre-order basis.
We were only 20 years old when we decided to start off. We had no experience and that can be daunting. We wanted to be entrepreneurs, we didn’t have our own office, we didn’t have saved up capital, we didn’t have MBAs or employees with an MBA to help us, it was young, naive us and what we have to make of Cupcakes and Closet was for us to decide. But like they say, risk talking ability is inversely proportional to age and we had to do it then.
In the beginning, what motivated you to become an entrepreneur?
We just wanted to create something people loved and a work environment that made us happy and we were ready to do anything for that. Right from the ultra long brainstorming sessions to the research sessions in front of the computer that went on till our eyes watered, we did it all. Since day 1, our job is to solve problems when we walk in the door every day, even if it’s a hem or a stitch. We did this with our own creativity and hard work.
How have your entrepreneurial motivations changed since you first started?
We take each day as learning process, like they say – formal education can make you a living, but self education can make you a fortune. We are obsessed with fashion! Even when we are away from work we are constantly looking out for new trends or taking inspiration from other forms of art and nature. We could retire or withdraw, but this is where our passion lies.
What’s the single most important reason for your success?
Social media marketing has been the key driver of our success. It enabled us to reach the masses with zero marketing capital to start off with.
What’s your least favorite part about being an entrepreneur?
Being entrepreneurs we are always struggling for time, there is so much scope a startup has, but we don’t have enough time to accomplish all our goals.
What entrepreneurial hacks have you developed to stay focused and productive in your day-to-day?
Cupcakes and Closet is a niche fashion platform. We are offering a unique solution for the most demanding fashion consumers on social media. When shopping online, a consumer responds best to products that make them feel special – we are trying to place such beautiful products with our clients.
We keep up with the global trends. We have a dedicated team studying trend reports and forecasts. We update the collection bi-weekly, depending on our findings.
If you could offer a first-time entrepreneur only one piece of advice, what would it be?
Start small; focus on the product, scale will come with time. The e-commerce market has gotten really competitive over the last 2 years, so we advice people to hire a professional digital marketing team to help push the product.
How do you think being an entrepreneur has turned you into a better person?
As entrepreneurs all decisions are made keeping in mind the interest and needs of your team as well the customer. It has helped us get a better perspective of a situation and be more selfless.
Cupcakes and Closet is a niche fashion platform. Their advice to the young women is to start small, learn from the mistakes and you will eventually perfect your business model. Have the courage to take the first step and get started.
Connect with Aneesha Dalal and Nirali Malji, Co-founder at Cupcakes and Closet Pvt. Ltd.
Feeling inspired? You can be an awesome entrepreneur too! Go ahead, start your online business today!