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Meet Neha Ash of Desi Belle

Today we’d like to introduce you to Neha Ash.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Neha. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
Does every story start with an “It’s a funny story?” Well, this one does, so here goes. It’s a funny story.

I’ve always been interested in fashion but never pursued it seriously in the past. My background is from the legal industry. I’ve been in it since I was 19 and practiced Law sometime after graduation. I’ve had a curiosity in fabrics for a long, long time, from cottons to sequins, basically anything and everything.

My mind is constantly running, working on new looks and designs that I really want to wear. (Check my Google history on fabrics, you’ll understand my obsession). I remember when I was a teenager, I used to revamp broken earrings and jewelry into necklaces or headpieces, dress up at home and go crazy with the camera.

Although this was a huge past time, it was a closet hobby as, like alot of teenagers, I was never confident to show or talk about it basically because I was always an introvert and an extremely shy person. I think I come from the generation that lucked out, in the sense that we were blessed with the internet and with that you can do anything you want and turn almost anything into a business, so that’s what I thought of doing… for eight years and just never got around to it.

So here’s the funny story- Fast forward to 2017, after procrastinating and talking about it to my husband for months and months, with only ideas in my head, extremely big dreams but no concrete plans, I was sitting at home bored on a Friday night. My husband was fast asleep, and there wasn’t anything on tv.

I was fiddling with the laptop and was browsing away, and this particular online store really pissed me off, from everything they were doing with their fonts and outlook but particularly with their pricing. I was pretty darn sure I could have found the exact same piece and sold it with a 40% profit and charged it 60% less than what they were charging, and that was exactly what I did.

I was a woman on a mission! I found that same item after three hours (and really painful and dry eyes), secured a website host, paid for all subscriptions, got myself a legit .com, uploaded the item, and my business was up and running ever since.

Next day morning, I told the husband that it’s up and live, he was in disbelief at how impromptu everything went as I was supposed to come up with a plan, go through everything step by step, come up with goals and targets, but nope, just like that, with nothing but one piece of clothing hanging on the page, the website was up.

So I guess my take away from this experience is that if you don’t take action and just procrastinate, nothing will ever happen. Your idea or dream will just continue to be on hold for 8, 18, 28 years. Also, you can always plan a pretty picnic but can never predict the weather. Sometimes its best to go with the flow and not be so scripted in life. Of course, don’t follow my footsteps, I took a gamble, not knowing if the business would take off – it’s not free to start an online business, and neither is it necessarily cheap, and I did say it was a funny story. 😉

About us – today. We have turned from a reselling outlet for two years and now adding on to our list and on our way to unveil our own exclusive designs bearing in mind and sticking to our East meets West concept which I’m so excited about! It did take a long time for me to make my dream come true and patiently waited for things to kick off before being able to afford coming out with our own designs.

With big aspirations and feet on the ground, I am hoping for big things for Desi Belle and a bigger desire for people to relate with my style. I always believe that anyone can start a business – you can sell anything. But to start a brand, that’s being raw. You have to expose your vulnerability and be daring to showcase your personal touch to the world.

Every piece should be something that you would wear. That’s the only way it would work. It takes a lot of courage, and you know what, sometimes that’s all you need in this lifetime.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Like all businesses, we had our fair share of ups and downs. As blessed as we are to have an online platform, it also means we would have to work extra hard to gain our customer’s trust due to them being unable to see or touch the fabrics before purchasing them.

In the initial stages when we had no testimonials to back be our voice, it was hard to convince customers that look, we are legit. But like all things in life, nothing stays in the same position forever. Thankfully we made it through that stage and to be honest even though it is not as hard as before, it is still a problem we face with customers new to our site.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Desi Belle – what should we know?
We mix ethnic styles with modern flairs. Something that can be worn for both traditional and corporate events. We take pride in delivering efficiently and work hard in satisfying the needs of our customers.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Courage, resilience, grace, being grounded and humble, respect, be in competition with no one but yourself, the hunger to succeed and most importantly – to literally mind your own business.

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