For Sneha Prabeen, an accessory becomes a signature piece when it spices up an outfit even as it keeps the overall look swanky and sophisticated. But when it comes to statement jewelry, the young designer, who hails from Kozhikode in Kerala, swears by the power of beads.
“It was on the summer break after my bachelor's that I found some stranded beads in my closet. I immediately decided to craft an anklet out of it. But the formation of those beads into a delicate jewelry piece amazed me. I realized beads are far more versatile than I thought. So, I decided to replace every accessory I wear with beads by blending my artistry with sheer utility values,” she says.
Still, it took seven years of considering the pros and cons, before Sneha decided to pursue her passion in jewelry making. And once the quirky teen drew a ‘bead’ on her passion to become an entrepreneur, Yuvanta was born.
Today, the sky-blue name-board of Yuvanta and a crowd of excited women waiting for their turns to choose the beaded beauties that perfectly gel with their skin tones are a constant presence in the flee markets of Bangalore and Kochi.
Beaded lingerie straps, home décor items, bookmarks, stoles and accessories that capture the attention of best of fashionistas, Yuvanta has it all.
Makeover to lingerie straps
Apparently, Sneha always had a problem with the plastic lingerie straps and the rashes they left behind. “Although they look transparent, plastic lingerie straps are so unsightly. It simply doesn't go with your skin. I think it is shouldn't be about hiding your lingerie straps but about showing it off cleverly. Beaded lingerie-straps are one genre of quick-moving products I have. Girls welcomed this idea with joy and replaced their 'biting straps' with beautiful chains,” the young designer sounds proud.
For Sneha, fashion is also about utility. Her brand is not about those avoidable extras you wear to a party but of those subtle and elegant replacements to your daily fashion accessories.
Yuvanta is now a well-known designer brand with patented designs and raw materials. When asked about it, Sneha says that it is imperative for an innovative designer to safeguard her designs as "some concepts you formulated shall stay yours forever."
Customers reach out to Sneha through Yuvanta's official website and social media handles. Sneha never wanted a physical store anywhere; she takes time to travel and explore new designs, raw-materials and genres.
Journeys in search of people, beads
Sneha opted to stay away from placements and talent hunts after her post graduation in Corporate Communication and Marketing. She knew she was all set to craft her future with beads, and Yuvanta was already in her mind. But this village belle, who didn’t have much exposure, did not have enough opportunities to learn the technicalities of jewelry designing.
“A meeting with Madhavi at Bangalore changed my outlook towards beaded jewelry. She is a software engineer by profession and a fashion designer by passion. She has the same love of beads that I have and has mastered some fine techniques to work with it. For a beginner like me, her experience and expertise was a treasure and that’s how I oriented my signature style and patterns,” Sneha says.
The 27-year-old has also traveled all the way to Haskar, a rural belt in Uttar Pradesh where the local communities handcraft glass beads and pack it in lots to different parts of the country. “I have been using handcrafted glass beads for a long time now. I make sure that each of my designer product is intrinsically unique,” she says.
Yuvanta has a large range of décor items like long-beaded curtains, sparkling window-blinds, drapes, show-pieces and the like. Usual jewelry options like necklaces, earrings, nose-pins, head-wears, hair-do accessories, bracelets, anklets and others are also aplenty in Sneha's collection. She plans to enhance more utility items in a bid to give a beaded twist to daily life. Yuvanta now has a manufacturing unit in Kozhikode.
Sneha has a few words of wisdom to share with aspiring entrepreneurs who want to venture into the designing field. “Choose your medium well; because that determines your destiny. Dream big; if you imagine it, you can very well accomplish it,” she says.