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When model turned entrepreneur, Gabriella Demetriades sat down for her backstage bytes at an event called ROAR, she was charming, gorgeous and full of essential advice. As an entrepreneur firing up her clothing brand, DEME by Gabriella, rolling up her sleeves she says how she likes waking up to challenges and fighting for things that matter.
“I don’t like everything to be handed to me, or given to me.”
It actually makes business more exciting when the roads are a bit rocky.
However, the essential need, being an entrepreneur, is to surround oneself with the right people.
“You have to be really careful about the people that you work with, the people that you trust.”
It begins right from setting up a business. The idea is to surround oneself with people who are smarter and have more knowledge– such that they can help you get the base right. In her own case, that has been the reason her brand’s decisions were a lot more calculated while building the foundation.
Also, for a creative person, the technicalities harbor the potential to be mindboggling and stressful. But having the right people to guide is very helpful. After all, to reach a certain level, doing these things right is extremely crucial.
She talks about a great void for women’s wear in India about 10 years ago when she came to the country to work as a model. It was the driving idea behind her brand, DEME. Raised by her mother who was a fashion designer and in a family that dealt in the textile business, Gabriella was surrounded by beautiful fabrics and sketching. India hence seemed like the perfect space to embrace her designs and calling it the right time to bloom, she began with selling clothes from a rack out of her bedroom. 5 years down the line, today DEME is one of the top fashion brands in India. Yet despite the fast-track growth, the journey had been eventfully roller-coaster.
She did struggle with getting the branding right, understanding her own voice, making crucial mistakes along the way.
Talking of bad hires, she says, “You don’t understand what a rotten egg can do to a business.”
Yet she describes her experience as a women entrepreneur in India, as one full of respect and welcoming.
Being a woman, embracing herself wholly, has been something that has always come to her naturally. She attributes it to her upbringing in South Africa. She expresses how her family taught her to do and be what she’s wanted to be, as long as she ’s good to people.
Her clothes exact that same sense of wholeness in being a woman.
“It’s the basic right for a man or a woman to feel sexy, to feel sensual, and for that to be denied to anyone is really sad.”
She talks about the purity, and the sense of class that comes from exuding real sensuality, and highlights the difference between being tacky and being out there.
“Sensuality really comes from within, and if you can tap into that and allow that to come out in a non-crass way, then it can be very beautiful.”