Interview with Suvindili for Chokolaate Issue 40 by Harithriya Kumarage

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1) Whose brain child was LimitedEdition? How did you start off?

The origins of LE can be traced back to the beginning of 2013 when I started a handmade cards business purely as a pursuit of passion. I have a lot of love for lively and unique things so I wanted to share it with others. It was a great experience to be lost in a world filled with colours and speaking to people who wanted to make someone else happy by getting them a personalized gift done. Then I realised I could do the same with Jewellery. So I started working on catering unique, limited edition jewellery pieces to my beautiful customers to make them happier and confident, and strive to be different than the rest!

We first started off as an online store on Facebook and Instagram. In 2015 we launched our website and also opened a mini store in Liberty Plaza. This December 2016 we will be opening our own flagship store in Liberty Arcade J

 

2) Tell us a little about what LimitedEdition is all about? Is it purely accessories?

Yes it’s purely accessories which are affordable, trendy and different than the rest. We want our customers to create their own identity. We want to enable them to stand out. If there is one thing I love about LE it is the happiness of my customers who adorn LE jewellery and feel proud about themselves. I love them.

 

3) Do you do the designing by yourself? From where do you draw inspiration to come up with your products?

 

Many products are designed by me while others are from existing designers that I have teamed up with taking care of a wide and comprehensive range taking inspiration from the latest fashion runways. It’s a lot of team work and fun!  Sometimes I feel like the existing designs need some spicing up! So we discuss and apply the changes to the final product in order for it to be more unique.

 

First thing I do is check certain fashion websites to be in line with the upcoming trends. Then I speak to a set of customers to get their ideas. They always have the best of ideas and it’s all about inspiration from your own clients!

 

 

4) What would you say makes LimitedEdition stand out from the rest?

 

LimitedEdition.lk is different from the rest because it is not merely a brand that sells jewellery items. It’s a brand that brings new ideas and introduces trends that are contemporary, seasonal and based on the moods and feelings of society at large thus making changes in the traditional styles that usually restricted Sri Lankan fashion. Our brand breaks these limits and brings people out of their comfort zones, daring them to be different in their own unique way.

 

We are very focused on the needs of our customers and we never leave complaints unanswered and they are always taken responsibility for. Communication is maintained before and after sales service to make sure that our customers are given the best of our service. We are very enthusiastic on being personally connected with our customers to make their purchases simple and easy in a comfortable manner. Our customers keep us strong, and we never fail to showcase their support and comments on social media so they feel valued and important.

 

5) What is according to your opinion is the current high on trend these days? And what kind of accessories and goods show a high demand at LimitedEdition?

 

Chokers chokers chokers.. 90s trend all over again! Also, best friends forever rings and necklace sets where our customers celebrate their friendship with their besties!

 

 

6) What would you say is the most challenging aspect of being in this field?

 

Copycats! But well I believe in the saying “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery’’

But I guess it comes back to brand loyalty and we need to be at the right place at the right time with the right designs.

 

7) What is it like being a female entrepreneur? Is it challenging?

 

Being an entrepreneur itself is very challenging! Be it male, female! You take a big chance by quitting your job or starting immediately. If you aren’t from a business background, your family might not understand what “doing what you love” means. This was the biggest challenge I faced. No one seems to understand how depressing it is to sit at a desk and not be able do something that makes you truly happy or to give something to the society. Not being able to make a difference.

When it comes to the whole ‘female’ entrepreneur part of it, I believe we have to be strong, speak up and say just because I am a woman doesn’t mean I am born to ONLY raise a family, cook and clean. Women should not be labelled. They are similarly capable to run a business or hold a job in the corporate sector. We all, men and women, have to be independent. I hope I will have the opportunity to practice what I preach and be an example. I can go on and on but let’s keep it short J

 

 

8) What is your advice to any newbies who are just kicking off their businesses specially females?

This goes to both genders, First start off small. If you have a day job, keep it as it is and test your idea out. Although our education system does not teach much about being an entrepreneur or running your own business, there are plenty of books you can refer. Listen to motivational speeches, read autobiographies to get inspiration and most importantly believe that hard work pays off!

This goes out to my ladies out there; married or single, be wise when making life decisions. Compromising is fine as long as you are not the only one making them. Know what you want and work for it. Don’t let anyone or anything get in the way of your dreams.

 

9) Any personal favourites when it comes to designers?

I don’t have anyone in particular but I love the works of Bauble Bar!

 

10) Have you had any previous experiences working in this field before you started LimitedEdition? Also are you engaged in any other professions other than with LimitedEdition?

 

The only experience I gathered for LE from my previous job roles in the corporate sector was the accounting aspect. Every other aspect of LE, what trends to pick, which designs to go ahead with and mainly customer service, it all comes from my heart. I honestly love what I do. Just like LE needs me, I need it too. I quit the corporate sector in last year to manage LE full time and it’s by far the best decision I made in my life. So nope, I am currently not engaged in any other profession other than LE J

 

11) LimitedEdition is a perfect example of being a big hit within a short period and is continuing to grow in its popularity. What would you say is your secret behind your success?

 

“Love” is the secret! I am surrounded by family who loves and supports me to bring out the best in me. I do what I love and so does my team. We love our customers and always want to give them our 100%. The love we receive from our beautiful customers is what keeps us going. The Happy Customers Album we have is the first thing I look at when I’m having a bad day.

 

12) Any plans on expanding LimitedEdition to other avenues?

Yes I always wanted to have a clothing line; well fingers crossed J But for now I feel that we have so much more to do to complete our accessory collection.

13) How do you’ll at LimitedEdition stay updated with the latest trends? Do you think this is important?

Yes it is crucial. As the shopper and designer it is my responsibility to identify the global trends and picking the ones that will take off in Sri Lanka. So I read a lot of articles regarding fashion and celebrity styles. Then speak to some of my customers to get their opinions. And finally pick or create a design which will be in line with the trend.

 

14) Have you’ll ever had issues when it comes to meeting customer demands? If so how do you’ll overcome them?

So far we haven’t since 95% of our designs are always in stock. So our customers can purchase the items they see online the same day they lie their eyes on them from our store. Or if they want it delivered, we do it free of charge the next working day if it’s within Colombo and greater Colombo. Out of Colombo areas the delivery is done within 3-4 working days. The other 5% which includes out of stock and pre order basis items, the delivery will be done within 2 weeks.

 

15) What do you think is vital to keep your customers happy? A new collection every week or month is very important, so our customers are able to go for a fresh new look, change of style now and then is quite fun! But most vital would be a hassle free quick transaction with great customer care.

 

16) Where can our readers find you? You can always reach me via email; suvi@limitededition.lk or Whatsapp me on 0775366487.

 

 

Fact File

1.       Name : Suvindili Nayanathara Fernando

2.       Date of Birth: 9th May 1991

3.       Profession : Designer/Entrepreneur

4.       Motto: Love what you do and do what you love

5.       Hobbies/ Interests: Fashion, Reading, Travelling, Trying out new restaurants.

 

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