Growing up, Aisha watched her mom transform women into more powerful and beautiful versions of themselves when wearing clothes from her mom’s store. As the years went by, she noticed a growing gap between the Indian-American community and accessibility to traditional, yet modern clothes. Aisha’s motivation for KYNAH was to see women express themselves with full vibrancy. On the other hand, The Kayes was an idea that had been brewing for a while as the sisters were immersed in their full-time careers. They felt that they were lacking a creative outlet, and after catching the entrepreneurial bug from other small business owners, they decided to use their style to inspire young, independent women to follow their passions confidently.
The life of an entrepreneur isn’t always as glamorous as their attire. “I wake up every day and I’m the marketing manager, by 10 a.m. I am the operations manager, by noon the content creator, by 2 p.m. the logistics manager, and by 4 p.m. I am the designer. Over time, I’ve learned to focus on my strengths and delegate where I’m not as strong,” says Aisha. The sister-duo’s biggest challenge has been striking the balance between The Kayes and their careers. “We both willingly sacrifice our free time with friends and family to continue spreading our message, which we are so passionate about,” notes Neelofar.
Carving out a niche and adapting as the market evolves is an ever-present issue for entrepreneurs. “I had to really understand what the pain points were. Customers wanted a company that reflected both western and eastern styles, and a lot of women were frustrated with the industry because of sizing. Because of this, we implemented a customization tool on our website where customers can input their measurements to ensure their outfits fit perfectly,” says Aisha.
All three entrepreneurs agreed on a primary piece of advice: just do it. “I think the biggest hurdle is getting yourself to make the first move, getting past any internal doubt, and believing in yourself. Don’t let the fear of failure get in the way if your passion and intuition are telling you to do it,” says Aisha. KYNAH was just a thought for several years until she mustered up the courage to enroll in an extension course at Parsons in New York and created a business plan.
“Continue challenging yourself through hobbies that may turn into passions. Dreams don’t have to remain ideas,” says Alisha of The Kayes. It’s now up to us to rekindle our creative sparks into a roaring fire of our greater purpose.