‘Follow your dream’ is a saying that we hear ever since childhood. An astronaut, a pilot, a teacher are some of the dream professions of a child. With time, our dreams and aspirations change, we start running after the herd called society. There are only a few who truly accomplish what they always dreamt of.
Deena Rodrigues, founder of Chairs & Company, a furniture and home decor store in Bangalore is one of them. After working for 15 years in the corporate world working in the marketing and advertising sector, she decided to switch her career path and go forward with the one thing she loved: design. She started from scratch with drawing designs for interior spaces and working on a pro bono basis with her clients. While doing this, she realised she brings something new to the table and that this is where her true passion lies and she could see the results of her hard work as her clients kept coming back. Soon, in 2018, she started with her brand of designing furniture and home decor items, Chairs & Company. This company specialises in many different kinds of furniture and designs, from customising items for clients to upcycling old furniture to suit the customer’s needs.
Starting a business all by yourself from the scratch is not an easy task, she faced some challenges in the personal aspect. Being a mother and an entrepreneur at the same time wasn’t the ideal case but she managed to pull through this by managing all spheres of her life at the same time. Another challenge that her company soon had to face was COVID. What worried Deena and her team was having to pay the physical store expenses that were shut down completely for a few months. It was initially hard for her to switch to online platforms and to figure out the new online world. They opened the store soon enough and surprisingly their business was booming. With people being at home and comparatively free from their jobs, they focussed more on their design needs. From home offices to study desks for children, clients kept increasing for Chairs & Company. In the coming years, Deena plans on expanding her product line for Chairs & Company by exploring new areas of design and architecture. She also plans to expand her store both globally by opening stores in different cities and online by releasing their website.
Following the revolutionary brand, Nike, the one advice Deena would give to aspiring entrepreneurs would be to just do it. She believes that the amount of learning experience that one can gain as an entrepreneur is what one can never gain anywhere else.