Creativity Is Natural For Me - Sowmya Bandaru

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1. Tell us more about your background and journey?

After completing my in IT, I chose to pursue fashion design. It was always my cup of tea. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get into NIFT; hence I had to take up Engineering so that I don’t waste out on another academic year. I did my fashion design course from Hamstech in 2015.

2. When did you decide that you wanted to be a blogger?

One thing I was sure about is that I did not want to take up another job as a stylist at a retail store or work under some designer. I realized I wanted to be a blogger while I was halfway through my course in Hamstech. Being up close and getting hands-on experience related to fashion design and style intrigued me.

3. What made you turn into a Fashion and Lifestyle Influencer?

It’s always great when you have a specific obscure idea, and once you post it online, you find similar people who resonate with you; it keeps you motivated. I struck when the iron was hot, which pushed me to keep pursuing this career path.

4. Where does your inspiration lie?

For me, it occurs spontaneously, and from there, I create a mood board. And if I am facing some creative block, then I hop onto Pinterest or check out magazines.

5. What difficulties do you face being a Blogger?

It is ten times harder to grow a blog. We are our marketers, and we have to push our content, network with our peers. Also, generating revenues I am speaking only for myself when I say this, it took me quite a while to earn a substantial income. 

There are opportunities out there, but finding them is a task. And sometimes brands do not help either as they keep on negotiating the remuneration. 

I receive many emails with an opening line that says, “ we don’t have a budget, or we are a small business.” But guess what? I am a small business too. My time, photography equipment, editing, writing everything cost money. Brands should realize that it is a two-way street.

6. How did you come up with the idea and go about executing it?

There was a sudden surge in the blogging community back then from Mumbai and Delhi, but they were all luxury lifestyle and fashion bloggers. I wanted to bring something new to the table and break through the noise. 

That’s when I came up with the idea of being a blogger on a budget. I used to recreate my mother's sarees into different outfits that people loved, and I showcased outfits which a regular girl could wear daily, and that's when I started gaining traction.

7. What kind of influence do you think your followers have based on your blogs?

I am lucky for having a niche, authentic audience who have stuck with me throughout. Since I am a micro-influencer/blogger, I guess people take my opinions about certain products seriously. Because I do not rave about a product just because I am getting paid. I give honest advice, which is why my audience keeps coming back to me and helps me create double-tap worthy content.

- Sowmya Bandaru, Blogger

- Interviewed by K. Anusree

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