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Wise Words with Kavita Parmar

Wise Words

This week we speak to the founder of the IOU Project, one of the most popular businesses featured on Springwise in the past few weeks.

We’ve been speaking to Kavita Parmar, fashion designer and the founder of The IOU Project, which was launched last week. Kavita is based in Madrid, where she has been designing and producing two brands, Raasta and Susie Wong, for the past ten years. Eschewing mass-produced fabrics altogether, The IOU Project offers a line of unique items of clothing assembled by craftsmen in Europe using hand-woven Indian textiles. Allowing a real insight into the production process, each garment is tracked every step of the way, and the resulting product life story is accessible to the consumer via QR code. Consumers who buy the items are invited to upload pictures of themselves wearing them.
Thanks Kavita!
 
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
6. What drove you crazy when building your business?
The time it took to develop the project. I am impatient so it just wasn’t happening fast enough for me.
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
5. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Perseverance, A belief in yourself, the ability to talk yourself through tough times  
6. What drove you crazy when building your business?
The time it took to develop the project. I am impatient so it just wasn’t happening fast enough for me.
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
4. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on The IOU Project?
Cooking, listening to music, taking my boys out to the park on their bicycles, watching a movie, talking a walk through the old part of town, I could go on and on…

5. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Perseverance, A belief in yourself, the ability to talk yourself through tough times  
6. What drove you crazy when building your business?
The time it took to develop the project. I am impatient so it just wasn’t happening fast enough for me.
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
3. Can you describe a typical working day?
I walk to work through the park (my favorite bit) and then when I enter the building it’s whatever comes my way, meetings with my design staff, experiments with product development, brainstorming with the graphic design team, locking horns with finance and admin, impossible conversations with our technology partners, answering phones, packing boxes. I cannot think of a typical day!
4. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on The IOU Project?
Cooking, listening to music, taking my boys out to the park on their bicycles, watching a movie, talking a walk through the old part of town, I could go on and on…

5. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Perseverance, A belief in yourself, the ability to talk yourself through tough times  
6. What drove you crazy when building your business?
The time it took to develop the project. I am impatient so it just wasn’t happening fast enough for me.
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
2. Why do you think the IOU Project can succeed in such a crowded market?
I believe that we are speaking to people who appreciate and want a well-crafted handmade product and would love to be more aware of the entire process and maybe even participate in its growth.
3. Can you describe a typical working day?
I walk to work through the park (my favorite bit) and then when I enter the building it’s whatever comes my way, meetings with my design staff, experiments with product development, brainstorming with the graphic design team, locking horns with finance and admin, impossible conversations with our technology partners, answering phones, packing boxes. I cannot think of a typical day!
4. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on The IOU Project?
Cooking, listening to music, taking my boys out to the park on their bicycles, watching a movie, talking a walk through the old part of town, I could go on and on…

5. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Perseverance, A belief in yourself, the ability to talk yourself through tough times  
6. What drove you crazy when building your business?
The time it took to develop the project. I am impatient so it just wasn’t happening fast enough for me.
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!
 
1. Where did the idea for The IOU Project come from?
This project was born out of my need for coherence in this ever-changing world of fashion. To address things that were close to my heart, sustainability in our work, giving back to communities that made our designs possible and encouraging artisans to continue their age-old crafts that define us as humans.
2. Why do you think the IOU Project can succeed in such a crowded market?
I believe that we are speaking to people who appreciate and want a well-crafted handmade product and would love to be more aware of the entire process and maybe even participate in its growth.
3. Can you describe a typical working day?
I walk to work through the park (my favorite bit) and then when I enter the building it’s whatever comes my way, meetings with my design staff, experiments with product development, brainstorming with the graphic design team, locking horns with finance and admin, impossible conversations with our technology partners, answering phones, packing boxes. I cannot think of a typical day!
4. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on The IOU Project?
Cooking, listening to music, taking my boys out to the park on their bicycles, watching a movie, talking a walk through the old part of town, I could go on and on…

5. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Perseverance, A belief in yourself, the ability to talk yourself through tough times  
6. What drove you crazy when building your business?
The time it took to develop the project. I am impatient so it just wasn’t happening fast enough for me.
7. What motivates you to keep going?
To create something that excites and inspires people and makes an impact on someone’s life.
8. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Oh I don’t know, I think the mistakes I made were worth their while as they taught me a lot.
9. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
Working with artisan groups not only in India and Europe but worldwide, there are so many things out there to conserve and care for before they disappear. That this should grow beyond fashion. We are already working with people like Domain de Boisbuchet and we are being approached by some other institutions.
10. If you weren’t working on The IOU Project, what would you be doing?
Something similar to this, as it is truly what I have worked towards all these years as a designer and entrepreneur.
11. Tell Springwise a secret…
I am addicted to Chocolate and TED talks … I think.
12. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up no matter how many times you fail. As an entrepreneur you really don’t have an option but to try again.
Thanks Kavita!