“Style is a way to say who you are and without having to speak” and handbag compliments this style for every woman. Sujata Medepalli is a lady who is having a passion to compliment women style through her variety of beautiful purses and handbags which she designs herself. Her brand Sujata Se is really from the heart and has complemented so many ladies with beautiful accessories. Straight from Sujata about her journey from Sujata to Sujata Se-
1. Please share with our readers a little bit about yourself?
My name is Sujata Medepalli, I belong to Lucknow and married to a South Indian.It’s a lovely North/South combination! I have 2 beautiful children, daughter Jaishree & son Dhruv. My passion is designing exclusive evening bags in beads, silk, jute etc. They are retailed in Singapore, and are also shipped to various parts of the world, like Norway, Sweden, Japan, Canada, Malaysia,& The USA, soon going to Australia, Dubai & Thailand! I also deal with affordable antiques from various parts of the world. Hence my company names Sujata Se’ meaning from Sujata. I am also a Yoga teacher and love to teach Yoga. I have led an expat life for the last 24years and have resided in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Norway, Mumbai & Singapore. Beautiful memories & wonderful friends made along the way! Would not trade these experiences for anything, Priceless!!
2. So when did you venture into this business and what inspired or motivated you to take a plunge into this venture?
I started out on my business seriously 6 years ago.I got a lot of support & encouragement from my family & friends. When I first started out it was just by word of mouth & the business just grew to the point where ladies used to just call me & reserve my bags, antiques as soon as my new stock arrived, without even looking at the pieces, they trusted me & my choice so much.This motivated me to work harder & grow my business.
3. Can you share with us, some of the challenges you faced during your initial days?
Challenges are always there in whatever you do.Especially when you are getting your products made in India. Sometimes it was very frustrating, in the beginning, when I would not get the product I wanted, the bag I designed, bad workmanship, I am very particular about good workmanship & finish, even if the bag costs 10$, the finish for me has to be perfect. Through lots of trial & error, now we have made it! I am proud to say today, through this little business of mine I have given employment to many poor in India and now they even know how to email, even what’s app!!!
4. So how do you balance your personal and professional life?
Organization! One has to be organized & plan ahead. Luckily for me, my family is a huge support & do not mind me being away from them hours on end! In fact, they come & help me out.
5. What would you suggest to other aspiring women who want to venture out on their own?
My advice to other women is you have to be ready to work really hard & be focused on your goal & stay true to yourself. There will be many different kinds of people you will meet along the way, really good ones & some not so good! Stay strong & you will succeed. There will be many who will copy your products, but as long as you are confident about yourself & your product you need not worry! Be POSITIVE!
6. Is there any person who has mentored/supported/inspired you?
My biggest support is my husband, he has never stopped me in anything I wanted to do & never questioned me, as to why what etc. He has always said go ahead & do what you want to do. The inspiration I have got from various women I have met along the way, the average woman who works so hard.Some of the medical problems but still working hard.So I look at it this way, if they can do it so can I.Biggest inspiration was from an 86 year old man suffering from cancer when I asked him how he was doing, his reply was I am only 86, I have so much to look forward too. I salute such people.
7. What do you have in the pipeline for your company’s/business future development?
A Sujata Se’ store is in the pipeline in Singapore & then to expand to other countries.
Promoting Excellence in Women!