It’s really appealing to glimpse at the customized dresses draped around the mannequins which head towards the wish list of many customers. However, very few are able to draw their attention on those leftover scrap textiles abandoned in the corner of the store. A handful of these pieces are sold to transform as stuffings for the blankets whereas the rest of them goes directly in the dumping sites. This huge wastage triggered an 18 years old teenager named Sujhan Ghimire to open his own brand ‘Taalo’ which upcycles the scraps into clothing accessories such as ties, headbands, scrunchies and sell them via social media. The startup is surviving for 6 months with the official sales from September 2018.
Story Behind Initiation
“When I was in grade 9, I visited my father’s garment factory where I was left shocked seeing the number of leftover fabrics just going in the waste. Instantly, my mind started to think about how to utilize these pieces. However, as a typical Nepali student, I was set up solely to concentrate on my studies rather than diverting my concentration more on this topic. But the curiosity of searching alternative ways to recycle always led me to brainstorm. So immediately after my A-levels, my prime focus shifted to carve my ideas into reality.” says Sujhan. He mentioned that his initial investment was of about Rs 8000 which he was saving since a long time for this project.” He added,“ I have been purchasing the scrapes in kilos and the payment to the workers is also done in the piece rate. This reduces my overall costs to an impressive level.”
Taalo is a small step to modify the definition of entrepreneurship. Whether you design from the new fabrics or the idled rags, there is always the scope of entrepreneurship when you think out of the box and splurge the creativity. It aims to reuse and recycle the wasted fabrics in something more useful and creative.
Sujhan says, “Since Taalo is in its recent phase, there are fewer varieties of accessories. However, I am looking forward to expanding the portfolio.”
Sujhan expressed his challenges of doing all the jobs himself from searching the suppliers to delivering the final goods. He said, “I visit different boutiques, factories and leather workshops to seek the appropriate scraps myself. Likewise, I design on my own. It takes lots of time to design different samples and finalize the final design so that the actual production can be done in the bulk. On the other hand, since scraps are of limited length, matching accessories such as a similar pocket square for a similar tie is also difficult to produce.”
Sujhan is really happy with the customer response. He said, “ It’s not even a month that Taalo is getting such good responses. No matter how a small number of customers we have right now, their words are really motivating and encouraging. I think, it’s the affordable price and ample quality provided by Taalo, that makes our customers satisfied.”
He explained, “Taalo doesn’t have a visible store. All the buying and selling process is done online. So, I am planning to open a small workplace in near future. I am really grateful to my friends who used their social media to promote my startup. However, still, Taalo is only known to few people. So, I am looking forward to aware more buyers in future. Not forgetting to mention that teamwork is really crucial for any business, I am also on my way to recruit like-minded people for Taalo.”
Message to youths
Sujhan expressed his final words as “You don’t always have to do what others say. Just wander around and discover your horizon of interest and work accordingly. Different minds mean different ideas. Different ideas mean different innovations. So, if more youths follow their heart rather than chasing the old conventional job mindset, then the whole society is going to have a better future.”
By: Ruby Shah