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April 20, 2024

Inspiring women in luxury and women who inspire them

Pooja Patel & Ruhi Gilder

What is the world without its heroines. We all have one and on this International Women’s Day, we ask the women leaders of Indian luxury who inspires them. From world leaders to mothers and friends, these boss ladies tell us that inspiration is everywhere and every woman inspires!
Sarah Fabergé, Founding Member of the Fabergé Heritage Council & Director of Special Projects, Fabergé

“One woman who inspires me the most is Janet Evelyn Fookes, Baroness Fookes (A British politician). She was my English teacher in school, and now my friend. I grew up at a time when girls were not always expected to have a career, and Janet instilled a sense of confidence in me. She became a Member of Parliament in 1970 when there were very few female MPs and later held the role of Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons. I admire Janet’s energy and dedication to her parliamentary career, and other causes she believes in. Whenever I am feeling doubtful or concerned, I ask myself, what would Janet do? I know for certain that she would remain cool and logical, analyse the situation and look for solutions.”
Your message to other women on International Women’s Day:
“There is so much we can learn from each other, and it is encouraging to see women of all ages, continuing to break down barriers to achieve their goals.”
Gauri Devidayal, Director, Food Matters India Pvt. Ltd.

Gauri Devidayal

“A big part of who I am today is thanks to my mother. She gave me confidence, exposure and freedom to do things I wanted to. She is a no-nonsense, no shortcuts person, and those qualities have been ingrained in me. She always stressed the importance of being financially savvy and independent and I think that’s one of the biggest strengths she gave me. She’s always encouraged me to strive to be and do my best and aim for the highest. She’s very vocal and honest in her feedback and criticism, which at first seems harsh, but,  in fact, it always pushes me to do better.”
What is your message to other women on International Women’s Day?
“Today it might seem like you have a seat at the table because you tick the gender diversity box for someone. But at least you have a seat at the table. Tomorrow it will be because of what you bring to the table, rather than your gender, but until then seize every opportunity that comes your way.”
Neeta Lulla, Founder, House of Neeta Lulla

Neeta Lulla

“I look up to many women and people for inspiration. But one woman who inspires me the most is the late Mexican artist Frida Kahlo. She lived an unconventional life, the one that had a lot of pain until the very end. Despite that, she was so passionate about art and lived her life with dignity. She was always so well dressed, passionate about her work, and believed in herself. She inspires me to continue doing what I do irrespective of any obstacles or challenges. One thing about her that always stays with me is that creativity has no boundary.”
What is your message to other women on International Women’s Day?
“Be an unbridled source of enthusiasm, expression and sentiment; nurture the world within yourself. All attempts to bind you will go in vain as you are limitless, fearless and strong-willed; ever ready to break free and fly into the unknown. Be a vast expanse of emotive excellence and rule the hearts of one and all.”
Varna Bhat, Founder & CEO, Blisswater Industries Pvt Ltd

 Varna Bhat, Founder & CEO, Blisswater Industries Pvt Ltd

“I am inspired and motivated by Amelia Earhart—the first woman aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. For me, flying represents a sort of freedom and a feeling that anything is possible, that the sky is the limit in terms of what one can achieve. To me, she embodies breaking-free and soaring heights. She did that both literally and figuratively. I grew up reading about how she was an early supporter of the equal rights amendment. It was crucial and difficult to stand for the cause back then in the 18th century. For me, that is very motivating. Her life and her stories always pushed me to go above and beyond, to move the needle at every step. She was known for being independent and persistent in stressful situations. This is something I try to imbibe in my daily life as well. It is a well-known fact that she learnt to fly from another woman. And this serves as an inspiration. During my professional career, I have always reached out to fellow women entrepreneurs whenever I need support, and I am more than happy to help other women in whatever way I can if they need support and guidance as well.”
What is your message to other women on International Women’s Day?
“I think collaboration is the key. We should all help each other grow, so we all can become successful. Another thing is to constantly keep learning from leaders, peers, and just about anyone! Learning happens everywhere, and this is something we must pay attention to at all times. And lastly, everyone must understand that there is no substitute for hard work and perseverance.”
Snigdha Manchanda, India’s First Certified Tea Sommelier and Founder & CEO,

Snigdha Manchanda - Tea Sommelier & Founder of Tea Trunk (3)

“My mother encouraged me to start Tea Trunk. Entrepreneurship is a tough journey. Every time I was tired and wanted to give up, my mother reminded me how I am fortunate to receive opportunities that others would kill for. So instead of complaining, I should get back and do complete justice to it. Everyone needs a personal cheerleader and my mother has been one for me. Among public figures, I love how Sara Blakely (American businesswoman and entrepreneur) and how she built Spanx (American underwear and shapewear maker). Very few people know that this 50-year-old woman bootstrapped this global brand and still owns 100 per cent of her business. Love her personal brand of energy that she infuses in her products. Blakely has taught me that it’s possible for a solo woman founder to build a global brand. Women need to see many such role models so we can normalise this. My mother stood by my decision to bootstrap Tea Trunk and gave me the initial seed money that I needed to buy my first lot of inventory. This is the money she had been saving while she was working. There’s no shame in asking for all the help you need. She taught me how important it is to create an ecosystem around you and to thrive as a woman entrepreneur.”
What is your message to other women on International Women’s Day?
“Ask for help. Don’t know how to read a balance sheet? Ask for help. Want more time away from chores? Ask for help. Want to hire a team, but don’t know where to start? Ask for help. Stuck with sales projections? Ask for help. Women sometimes undermine their needs by default. You don’t have to do that. If you’re building something you believe in, go out and get all the help you need to thrive.”
Read More:
From Alia Bhatt to Taapsee Pannu, women will rule Bollywood in 2021 with big hits
Looking back at the biggest wins of 2020 for women this International Women’s Day






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