Niha Hanees - Success Is Living a Happy Life and Being Able to Do What You Love (Entrepreneur / Founder of the_card_factory_ )

I just wanna do what I love for a lifetime, making my own living, being able to be independent, and at the same time being able to give a fair share of my time to my family

1. Tell us about your background and journey.

Hey there, I’m Niha Hanees and I come from Kerala. I’m a science postgraduate who decided to take art as my career. All of this obsession with Art began when a very fine morning my mamma came with a bunch of colored papers from her school where she works as a kindergarten teacher. 

As a child, I had this obsession with collecting chocolate wrappers and all those colorful stuff which I found eye-catchy. Little did I know then, that those bunch of color papers, would bring color to my life. I learned how a lifeless inanimate object could bring life to you. Those papers started to keep me company, they started to be a reason why I wanted to wake up the next day. 

Slowly I learned crafting, made gifts for my friends and their happy smiles motivated me to create more and start my own business. I learned the magic of creating smiles and loved and nourished that tiny magic within me and that pretty mess that came with it. There were times when the numbness of not being accepted by people struck me. There were times when I struggled to find materials. 

There were times I searched for a helping hand and none where there. There were times when I was looked down on by people and mocked by them for owning a small business, times when people backbited me and found me unworthy. There were times when I felt low and kind of depressed thinking about the dreams I hadn’t achieved, thinking about the deadlines I couldn’t meet, thinking about the goodies I couldn’t buy, and so on. I fell a hundred times, learning that each time I was the only reason I fell. 

But each time I fell, the urge of wanting to stand up again, made me realize how much I loved my passion, how much I wanted to experiment with new things, and how much I wanted the smiles on their face each time their eyes met my creativity. It took me a whole 4 years to gain this huge art family that I’ve on Instagram. 

But at this moment, I’m glad I chose Art as my career making it my happy pill, being able to do something new each day in itself is refreshing. From being a content creator who creates DIY gift ideas each day to being an entrepreneur who curates personalized gifts for her clients I feel satisfied with what I’ve and hope that I can stay the same.

2. What led you to start your page on Instagram and what is it about?

To be honest there wasn’t any particular happy cause that led me to start my Instagram page. I did my degree at a college where we weren’t exposed to any extracurricular activities and all we were imposed upon was studies. Life was pretty hard then and days seemed so long. And all I had was art to keep myself sane during those tough times at the hostel. Slowly I started making stuff for my friends and later on, my friends and family suggested I should start an Instagram page and sell what I make, that’s how everything began. 

For me who was new to Instagram and didn’t even have a personal account on Instagram back then, the card factory was the first Instagram account I made. It might sound silly to others, but for me, it’s an emotion. The card factory is all about art and smiles. I create art content, and gift ideas on a daily basis helping others make art simple and also helping them help in gifting others on their own. On the other side Card Factory is a store where you can find pretty gift items all customizable, which you can gift to your loved ones. Thus Card Factory shares the purpose of Art, smiles, and reliving memories in the form of gifts.

3. What is your idea of success or your mantra in life? 

For me, success is living a happy life and being able to do what you love. I’m not a person who has so many goals or big dreams. I just wanna do what I love for a lifetime, making my own living, being able to be independent, and at the same time being able to give a fair share of my time to my family. 

Maybe that's the reason why I’m able to enjoy this career of mine. And to be honest I still do have a lot more to achieve and each day is a progress to it. To me wanting to wake up the next day thinking about all the happy things ahead in life is what success means nothing more nothing less. And I’m grateful for my willingness to work hard and to achieve a lot of those things that were once a dream to me

4. How can someone become a successful social media influencer?

Being a social media influencer is really hard, to be honest. You have to stay consistent dedicate a fair share of your life to your social media and work hard and hard. Rather than sticking to something there will be times you’ll have to try new techniques and strategies, change few things, move with the trend..etc. But trust me each change will mould you into better with time passing. 

The sole purpose of a social media influencer is you be able to bring change even the slightest one in others' lives. For example, when people come into my dms showing the things they made for their loved ones inspired by me, it makes me feel like “Oh this is how my art page is influencing others and making their lives much happier “ I guess that’s how one becomes a successful social media influencer.

5. What are your tips for first-time and aspiring entrepreneurs?

Do what you love, be it anything legit, just do it. There aren’t rules to creativity or limits. You should explore your real self and what you want. And yes things don’t happen overnight it takes time, so don’t get easily disheartened. Good things take time. Be consistent as consistency is the key if you wanna achieve more. 

Not everyone gets it easy. Behind every Instagram page you might find is simple and easy to do, there lies a lot of struggles and hard work. So working hard and making it happy and cheerful is the only way you can make it healthily. And yes fine forget that at the end of the day make sure whatever you do brings happiness in your life. Sometimes things might get hard but trust me better things will surely come. So just don’t give up! 

It's okay to be not okay at times but make sure you get back with more energy!

The key to a successful business is to make sure both you and your client are satisfied with the product at the end. Make sure that you become a reason for their happiness and make sure you are building a  happy life for yourselves too

6. Is it a financially stable career?

Yes, it is! Two years back even I doubted myself if art could provide my financial needs. I was anxious about my decision. But sticking to it and working for more made me realize how amazingly you can earn from your passion. Being able to earn from your own safe space, having a business, being able to earn from teaching art, and being able to collaborate with a lot of Indian and international brands made me realize that the stereotype that artists don’t earn enough is completely wrong. 

If you are willing to put your all into it, social media in itself brings you a lot of earning opportunities, and other than business you’ll get a lot of passive income. So for me being my own boss and being able to earn a good income and having time for myself is like a great deal

7. How would you distinguish the term blogger from influencer?

Being able to make a difference or bring out a positive impact on other lives is what makes an influencer different from a blogger. Influencers stick to promoting trends making a difference in lifestyle, and making life more fun and enjoyable. Anyone can become a blogger vlogger or YouTuber but it only takes very few people to be able to be an influencer and make an influence in others' lives. 


This is Niha Hanees. She is a content creator and has more than 343k followers on Instagram

Interviewed by - Ashmeet Kaur

Edited by- Arunangshu Chatterjee.