These homegrown brands on Myntra are geared up to spread festive joy to shoppers this Big Fashion Festival

From ethnic wear for women and children to handcrafted jewellery for the modern Indian woman, three homegrown brands on Myntra share how they are gearing up for the much-awaited festive season.
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The festive season has been officially flagged off, and among the series of celebrations, there is another reason to cheer. Myntra, the go-to-destination for fashion, beauty and lifestyle, has announced the arrival of the third edition of Myntra’s Big Fashion Festival (BFF) starting September 23. This edition is going to be bigger than its previous versions, comprising the biggest ever collection of over 1.5 million styles from over 6000 domestic and international brands. The mega fashion carnival is geared to handle 13k orders per minute at peak and is expecting over 6 million customers across the country.

In this edition of ‘The Pathfinders’ series, we traced the journey of three homegrown brands – who are excited about the Myntra Big Fashion Festival – by putting the spotlight on their origins, expectations, and what they have in store for the much-awaited festive season.

Ahalyaa: Festive with a hint of functionality

When Sabah Mahajan graduated from the National Institute of Design, e-commerce was still in its nascent stages. Belonging to a family with a 15-year-old established fabric printing business, Sabah thought of extending it and venturing into apparel business. Her Surat-based Indianwear label Ahalyaa came into being in 2016. “I had the backend to myself, like the whole printing unit. So, I was free to explore newer techniques and materials in terms of printing.” she reveals.

Sabah says that the aim has always been to unveil beautiful kurtis, while being affordable and festive. Since the kurtis offer embroidery-looking prints, but not actual embroidery, the clothes are lightweight and easy to carry. As early adopters of trends, Ahlayaa has been seeing a lot of Gen Z interest, who form a huge part of their income. Besides Gez shoppers, a lot of working women also opt for their styles that comprises silhouette and sarees. The brand has a dominant presence in Maharashtra and Delhi, while tier II cities have slowly started garnering traction.

Ahalyaa’s association with Myntra enabled them to evolve and grow in terms of their styles and offerings. At a time when everybody was making straight silhouettes, Ahalyaa wanted to try new designs. “The Myntra team was constantly guiding and supporting us all the way with trend based insights. They help us make decisions and keep us abreast of the latest fashion trends,” she adds. The partnership gave rise to some iconic styles, which became Ahalyaa’s top sellers, such as their Kaftan-pant combo and their maroon sharara set.

As the Big Fashion Festival is here, Sabah is hiring extra workforce and introducing new collections. She promises that the upcoming styles will see brighter colours, keeping the festive season in mind. “We are working towards new styles. Now we have almost 1000+ styles live on Myntra. We want to give our customers variety, so that Gen Z as well as the rest of the generations connect with us,” says Sabah.

BownBee: A one-stop-shop for children's ethnic wear

Monika Chaudhary’s struggle to find good traditional attire for her then five-year-old daughter led to the birth of BownBee in 2015. This gap in the kids’ ethnic wear segment inspired Monika to leave her decade-long corporate career to become an entrepreneur. “We did our dipstick exercise, we put up some exhibitions and to my surprise, the collection was sold out in no time. So that gave me the confidence to go ahead with the idea. And that's how BownBee was born,” she shares.

BownBee caters to two main factors - to promote Indian textile crafts and to build a one-stop shop for ethnic outfit. Today, the brand has over 600 products with presence in India, Australia, and Canada. “We have built a very differentiated model where we have kept our design centralized, but our production is done in different regions in India. This is because there are very specific cultural forms, embroidery or trends that cannot happen here. We have our factories and workers located in different regions of India, and we work very closely with local artisans to bring the right mix of modern designs with traditional textile forms,” she says. The brand garners maximum demand from metro cities.

BownBee’s Myntra journey dates back to 2018. “We are into a very niche segment that revolves around festivals. When the pandemic struck, I was nervous because the festive season was around the corner, I was unsure about the sales. However, my brainstorming sessions, to discuss and understand how to cater to the evolving customer’s needs, with Myntra gave me a lot of confidence. That’s when we started our Indo-Western range, which is now flourishing for us,” she explains. The Myntra team shares trend-based insights with all its partner brands on the platform across the board, enabling them on the platform. Through their platform, BownBee could reach a wider audience and to every nook and corner in the country with its full range of products, right from newborns to the age of 15.

The team has ensured that they have launched their festive collections ahead of the mega carnival event. With over 600 products listed on Myntra, BownBee is increasing its operational capacity for the upcoming Big Fashion Festival to cater to the influx in demand. Monika reveals that there will be a lot of twinning styles this festive season - same prints and fabrics, but different designs for boys and girls. Customers can look forward to a lot of Benarasi, Bandhej, and cotton Jaipuri prints this time.

Oomph: Handcrafted jewellery for new-age India

After working for over a decade in the banking sector, Nishtha Singh craved a new challenge and her love for jewellery encouraged her to plunge into the entrepreneurial journey. She started dabbling with a part-time jewellery business at home, selling to friends, family, and colleagues, alongside her full-time job. Eventually in 2014, she got her brand Oomph Jewellery registered and launched it on Myntra and in 2016, Oomph became her full-time job.

Oomph is a result of painstaking selection and craftsmanship she says. “I am personally involved in the entire curation process. We do contract manufacturing and I visit workshops to see if they are adhering to our quality guidelines. I'm also involved in the raw material selection - right from the beads to the colours. Each piece that is launched is very personalized, everything is personally selected,” Nishtha says. She claims they have the largest collection of Rajasthani Minakari earrings in the country, and almost 40 percent of their income comes from it. These styles are all sourced from Rajasthan, crafted by authentic artisans and craftsmen. Over 50 percent of her orders are also generated from metro cities, mainly the north and the west of India. And through it all, Myntra has been a critical partner.

“Right from the house I live in currently to the setup that I have, I owe it all to Myntra. Without their support and the growth that came with our association, I would have never taken the plunge,” she admits. Understanding that Oomph is a new brand, Nishtha recalls, the brand needed a lot of handholding initially, and the team was always there to support her. “Myntra contributes to roughly 50 percent of our overall business. So, you can imagine that it's our number one priority channel,” she added.

For Oomph, the preparations for the Big Fashion Festival began well in advance. Earlier this year, the brand moved into a space that is five times bigger than its previous set-up. “We've added more storage space as well as more manpower,” she says. Oomph Jewellery has already launched 100 styles across ethnic earrings, sheeshphool, cocktail rings, and they have further added 100-150 styles for the BFF event.

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