India Today

10 most powerful innovators

The Design Diary

Ishrat Sahgal 29

Founder, Mishcat Co and Ishrat Sahgal Studio, Delhi

Meaning of power

With power comes a lot of responsibility. We encourage women weavers from single bread earning families to engage. In the past, it was unheard of for women to work for a living as most were expected to take care of their homes alone. My vision is to revive dying crafts and make them suitable to modern lives. Responsibility towards the planet is equally important.

The challenges

Being a young businesswoman initially posed challenges as workers not used to taking orders from a woman refused to take me seriously. That changed once they looked at the work I was doing. Educating clients on the ecological aspect was also a challenge but that helped in winning lasting relationships. Future forward Mishcat's sustainable model that showcases Indian craft also has a wider global appeal. We are very proud that ours is a Made in India' brand. There are plans for expanding to London and eventually to New York.

Quick tip

Women entrepreneurs should question the idea of normal and work at finding their own voice. Don't take anything too seriously. What is most important is good and pure intention. By Kuheli Sen

Claim To Fame

At the helm of design house Mishcat Co, she works with artisans from Uttar Pradesh to conceptualise, source, manufacture and place carpets made of leftover silk saree skins

The Pad Woman

Deepanjali Kanoria 26 Founder and CEO, Heyday Care, Kolkata

On power and success

Power is the ability to effect change. Anyone who employs innovation to make life easier

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