By Hand From The Heart is a curated Makers Market event in South India. Upcoming Events: 22nd Edition: 2nd – 3rd February '18 in Coimbatore | 23rd Edition: 16th – 17th – February '18 in Chennai.
Let’s meet Swaathi Wudali today on our Meet The Makers Series! Swaathi runs a home design studio where she creates art based wood and mixed media products. We catch up with her about her creative business and her showcase at the By Hand From The Heart Makers Market here in Chennai this October.
1. A bit about yourself.
My name is Swaathi. A true Chennaite in every sense, I did my schooling in PSBB. An architect-turned- media professional, creativity has been my identity since childhood. I would always want to do even the smallest of things differently. After working in a MarComm startup for 2 months and dedicating the last one year to my dream venture, here I am, looking forward to take Wud Works to greater heights!
2. How would you describe what you do; and how long have you been making and creating?
My tryst with customising handmade gifts for my friends and family started during my school days. I used to make gifts which were unique and relevant to the receiver. It gave a better sense of satisfaction as compared to buying a gift. This made me stand apart in my social circle. Wud Works is the outcome of immense support and encouragement from my family and friends. Their spirit is what keeps my spirit alive and gives me the strength to cross the initial road blocks to becoming a successful entrepreneur. I create a variety of utilitarian art that exhibits the character of the owner. Mostly customised, I also create vibrant home decor items that add life to the surroundings. Personalised stationery like handmade notebooks, desktop organizers, etc. is an area of interest for me too.
3. Why is making important to you?
The freedom to express myself through what I make is very rewarding in terms of mental satisfaction and the immense happiness that I experience when people appreciate what I make is enriching and priceless!
4. Tell us about your recent works and your proposed showcase at the By Hand, From The Heart.
After my first experience with BHFTH in August 2015, I got the confidence to experiment combining wood with other materials to create interesting products. The upcoming edition of BHFTH will see me showcase these experiments of mine. Focussing primarily on home decor, there is going to be a wide range of products that shall be exhibited – fridge magnets, mini golu stands, bangle boxes,etc!
5. Describe your work premises & what is a typical working day, like.
I work from home. The flexibility at home enhances my creativity as it breaks confinement in any sense. A typical day at Wud Works generally comprises of me putting together concepts for customised gifts for clients, given their requirement and budget. I give them options, enabling them to choose what best they like. When I am not working for a specific client, I like to innovate and come up with out of the box utilitarian items to hand paint and personalise.
6. What is your personal favorite pick at Wud Works right now? And why ?
I am right now going gaga over my mini golu stand which will make sure the navratri festivities last all year round in households. This mini golu stand can become an integral part of a pooja room with miniature figurines of gods and goddesses adorning it.
7. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve gotten along the way in building your business?
There is a lot of support and encouragement in the current social scenario for people who want to start something on their own and sell their work. All that you need is the initial drive to keep going come what may, because that is what tests your ability to establish yourself over time.
8. What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned since starting your business?
Once you start something, it needs all your time and energy to become a successful venture. Wud Works has taught me to prioritise the most important things that make or break the venture and get this order right.
9. About Chennai
Chennai or madras, whatever you identify it by, the city always comes with the prefix “namma“. The city is undeniably ours – our identity, love and pride. It bursts with colors, energy, culture, kuthu and camaraderie. Chennai to me is a perfect inspiration and my muse forever.
10. You have participated at an earlier edition at BHFTH; share your experience.
Being a part of BHFTH has given me tremendous confidence through the visibility I could create and the networking I could do. It opened up a lot of avenues with plenty of opportunities for me which proved to be a great kick start for Wud Works.
At the Makers Market exhibition in Chennai this October, meet the maker!.
By Hand From The Heart: MAKERS MARKET – Festival Special – 19th Edition
Date: Friday – Saturday, 7th – 8th October, 2016
Time: 10:00 a.m – 8:00 p.m
Venue: Crowne Plaza Chennai Adyar Park
Address: 132, T.T.K Road, Alwarpet, Chennai – 600018, Tamil Nadu. India