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‘Identify a career you are happy in’

Jaspreet Cibbar, a textile designer and an entrepreneur says she found her calling for textile designing during the drawing competitions at school



Jaspreet Cibbar is a textile designer at ANS Sanghvi Export, a retail company based in Mumbai. She also successfully manages her start up venture, Premium Shirts, where she designs premium gender neutral shirts for all. In an exclusive interview, the Apeejay Kharghar alumnus gives an insight into her work life and suggests students to explore different fields at school to identify what they are good at. She also shares about her experience of setting up her start up business. Edited excerpts:

What does a day at work look like?

My day begins at 6 am. My office starts at 9 in the morning. I work on luxury home furnishing products and I make designs for cushion covers, bed linen, curtain, table linen, and embroidery. In the evening, after completing my work at the office till 5, I go to my start-up office in Belapur (Mumbai). The whole thing is set up, the designs are done. I just have to go and look at the logistics for 2-3 hours. I work there till 8 pm. I work for six days a week.

What was the inspiration to go into the textile industry?

My inspiration came from my school days. I have always been good at art and craft. Moreover, Apeejay Kharghar provided me with different platforms to participate in various inter-house and inter-school competitions. In school, I was very active in co-curriculars, I took part in all the drawing competitions. Through that I understood I wanted to do something in the creative field. I researched what I wanted to do: animation, VFX, textile designing, fashion designing. I attended many seminars and realised I wanted to do something that requires hands-on work. I am not into softwares. Also, my mother owned a boutique, so I always had an interest in clothes. Then I joined NIFT Mumbai in 2014 and pursued my textile designing Bachelor’s degree.

Tell us about your experience of managing your start up?

I did a lot of planning and research during the pandemic. I quit my job because the travelling was getting very hectic. I always wanted to start my own business. When it came to funding, I invested the money I had saved during my four years of work experience. For the rest of the funding, I applied for a government startup loan for women entrepreneurs. I applied for that and it took six months in that process. Then I began collecting vendors. I had a list of vendors from my work experience, so it did not take much time. It  took me two months to finalise the place of manufacturing. Then branding took another month. In October 2021, I set up an office in Belapur. We manufacture shirts and sell them online on our website.

Tell us about some of your best memories from school life?

Well, I was heavily into sports, especially handball. I was the goalkeeper of the Apeejay School, Kharghar handball team. I played a lot of tournaments all over India. Those are special memories.

What is the one word of advice you would like to give to a current student at Apeejay Kharghar?

I would say students in school must explore different fields beyond studies and find out what they are interested in, what they are good at. There are a lot of opportunities when you are in school. So many different competitions to take part in. Winning is not the motto, the idea is to understand what you are good at and identify your interest. That’s how I got into designing. So, explore in school and decide on a career that you are happy in.  

What are your future targets?

I would like to quit my day job and focus on my brand to take it to an international level. 

Arijit Roy is a young correspondent at Apeejay Newsroom. He has done his masters in English literature from Delhi University and has a book of poems published by Writers Workshop India. He can be reached at [email protected]

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