I’m penning down this special feature today for a fellow Vagabond, Aashima Arora, the owner of a conceptual beauty salon “The Artisans”. This is an inspiring story for all the Vagabond souls & female entrepreneurs who have taken a leap of faith to pursue their dreams.
Aashima Arora left her plump career as financial analyst from American Express to venture into the Beauty and Wellness industry. She recently opened Dwarka’s first premium concept salon ‘Artisans’, launched on July 9. This story of a middle class girl with big dreams, is sure to inspire many. At the age of 33, this mother of a 7 year old son, quit her cushy job & spread her wings to follow her dreams. We caught up with her, read on to know her amazing story:
1) How did you come up with Artisans?
Ever since I left my job in 2011 to save the failing salon venture of my sister-in law’s family, they had opened through a franchise chain with a national brand, I knew this is what I had to do. The reason I quit my job was because makeup, dressing up people and talking to people about something that made them smile made me so happy. The plum post and hefty salary at American Express and a standing offer from RBC could not hold me in the financial sector. Working at my sister-in-law’s salon with set guidelines of the franchise, I always fancied the idea of having an ideal salon. A salon where not only did we help people look their best, but also created a workplace driven by its Artisans to perfection. I wanted to launch my own concept salon, a beautiful artistic place that kept rejuvenation as the top priority for its visitors. That thought led us to create Artisans, where reading books over a cup of coffee is as important as getting the look our friends want.
2) What was your inspiration behind quitting your full time cushy job & starting your own business?
Your calling does not need an inspiration. Beauty and wellness industry, talking about looking good, making people look good, making them smile and understanding and learning the nuances of the same gave me much joy that I knew this was what I wanted to do. My husband is my pillar of strength and the main force behind my decisions, whether it has been me quitting my full time job or taking the risk of now launching my own venture.
3) What are the major challenges that you faced during that transition period?
The major challenge if you call it during my transition period was the study and hands-on training I went through in makeup, hair and special effect makeup. The full time classroom study that I took for almost 2 years from various international and Indian brands gave me the much-needed technical understanding. But honestly, at 33 studying, appearing in exams and completing assignments was surely tough.
4) Who is your biggest inspiration & why?
My biggest inspiration is my son who believes so much in me that mama can do anything and Madam Vandana Luthra who has given us all a reason to believe that women entrepreneurs can also be international brands. Her name, her philosophy, which has redefined women beauty and wellness industry, is worth much appreciation and applause.
5) As a mother, how do you tackle such a big leap of faith in your career?
Once a woman becomes a mother, the whole world feels it’s a full stop in her career. But by God’s grace, today my biggest strength to take up such a huge challenge is my 7-year-old son Aarav and my husband and companion Arun Arora. Never have I been made to feel that I have to cook, clean the house and it’s my duty to get household chores done. My husband, who has been in the business of trading, has assumed more responsibility of house so that I could focus on firstly preparing myself and now living my dream of running Delhi NCR’s first-ever premium concept salon, which is now open to franchises and partners.
6) Your son certainly has a mother she can look up to! What do you dream for him in his life?
Aarav has a personality of his own. There are times he gets into the kitchen and wants to be a chef, during swimming classes he wants to represent India at the Olympics and at times he wants to be a pilot. Like all kids, he has his ideas and keeps discussing his little flights of fantasy with me of making the tastiest chocolate pasta. Him and me are like the best of buddies. He has the simplest of solutions to my toughest questions. We don’t dream for him as I only wish he finds his calling as I found mine @Artisans.
6) Tell us something about yourself.
I am completely a people’s person who believes in the power of positivity and prayers. I divide my personality into two parts, Ashu, the sweet simple family girls who loves rajmah chawal, prays regularly to God and is her dad’s little princess. My other side is Ashi, the vibrant crazy girl who belongs to the wild world. Ashi is a girl who came from a small town of Sonepat, did herMBA and after that got placed with American Express. She goes by the belief that “when I walk with confidence, I believe I can scare the devil too”.
The Artisans located in Dwarka, Sector-12, Delhi is a concept salon where Bridal Make-up & Destinations weddings are very well catered to. They utilise the best techniques to create a desired look based on their inspiration and client’s brief. Clients expect these artists to assist in wardrobe dressing; imparting insider hints and tricks on how to maintain the look as well advising on the best product for their skin type. Artists at Artisans deliver you with a unique personalised experience never seen before.
Know more here: http://artisans.salon/