A note from the founder, Monisha Parwani:
As a kid, I was always an introverted little something honing over arts and crafts in my room. A dream I always looked forward to was starting my own business in this field. Lucky for me, this dream turned into a reality. Not without a few ups and downs of course. Keep reading to know how Creative Crafts was born!
The person I am today has come with a lot of soul-searching, healing, and finding myself. I didn’t get the opportunity to pursue anything in the crafts division as I was taking care of three young boys and molding them into the adults I knew they could be. But finally, came their time to slowly leave the nest.
As my kids became more independent, it gave me a lot of spare time to figure out what it is that I want to do now. And of course, my passion for arts and crafts never left my side. I figured the best thing for me to do was to get involved in party decorations and giveaways. I also took this time to brush my skills by watching YouTube videos of US influencers.
But, it got quite frustrating. As beautiful as their work was, it was barely achievable with the supplies available to us in the UAE. International shipping also charged a bomb, and it would take weeks for shipments to arrive. This led to a lightbulb moment, why not start my own venture where I could source and sell these materials so that everyone in the UAE could pursue art and crafts the way I wanted to?
I started off on souq.com (now Amazon.ae) and sold materials that I would personally pick up on my travels. The interest in the supplies I sold made me realize that I could do much more! Owing to this, my husband urged me to think bigger. So, in 2016, both of us went on an expedition to visit one of the biggest craft shows, and here the idea of Creative Crafts was born.
At this event, I had the opportunity to meet all the designers I used to watch on YouTube. The experience was ethereal, to say the least. I still get goosebumps when I think about it. To me, it seemed like I was in the right place at the right time. I’ve always believed in the power of destiny and the Universe, and I truly believe it planned this for me.
So then came the execution. We knew exactly what we wanted to do, that is open our own craft supplies store. But, we had no shop or trade license at the time. So we headed back to Dubai and hired someone to create our website. It took 6 weeks for our shipment to arrive and our paperwork to be set for the launch of our website. May 2016 was the day we launched.
After operating from our website for 2 years, we opened our store in Karama. The journey was frustratingly slow, and sometimes we felt like giving up. There were days we had no sales, and things were just not going according to plan. But what kept us going was that we weren’t indebted to anyone and there was no pressure financially.
Now, our store is booming and we have so many of you coming in and describing our store as your happy place. I feel so fulfilled to hear this, I feel great knowing I’m doing something to make a difference in people’s lives. I always considered myself an introvert but simply loved interacting with customers and learning about their creative journey.
Creative Crafts has given truly me a new lease. I’ve rediscovered my passion and love for crafts. Being creative has always brought me to the present moment, especially in hard times. I love hearing everyone’s stories because I feel that everyone has a story to tell, and together, we can inspire one another.
It has been an enjoyable journey to source new materials and constantly learn about what’s out there and provide it to my customers. We have grown from a paper-crafting store (as you can see in the image above–when we first opened) into art supplies, candle making, soap making, jewelry making, along with many other crafts.
Many friends and family have come and told me over the last few years that they saw me doing exactly what I am doing right now. I’m glad to have proved them right and made not only them but myself and my family proud.
We see ourselves as a family-run business. My husband is involved in the administration, and I take care of the day-to-day running. We give our customers services like demonstrations of our various machines, and free workshops to introduce them to our various materials and ideas to inspire them.
To conclude, I wrote this blog to inspire anyone out there to never be afraid of starting out. Once you do, the universe paves the way for you and doors start opening. But if you do not take the plunge, you may never know your true potential.
I have often heard of people talking about success in terms of how much money they are making. My definition is that when you wake up in the morning and are excited to go to work or excited for the rest of the day, that is being successful.
Patience is another attribute that I am still learning. We hear about overnight successes
because that’s the kind of stories that the media shares. So sadly, our idea of success becomes a mark of what we hear on the big-time news channels. But I believe, everyone has their own views on success. As long as you feel fulfilled, nothing else matters.
When at Creative Crafts, do pop into my office to say hello or ask for me. I am available most
afternoons. Would love to meet you. 🙂