Published: 21st April 2021
Neeta Vijay Kumar's Stardom Accessories finds and creates the most unique pieces of jewellery
Having set it up as a college student, Stardom Accessories is Neeta Vijay Kumar's dream literally come true. Here's how she figured out how to start something unique of her own
Stardom Accessories was first brought to life on a ninth grader’s mood board. Neeta Vijay Kumar had a space in her notebook dedicated to the jewellery store that she would one day set up. She had it all planned, name and all, with the hope to build it by her early thirties. But she one-upped her own expectations by setting it up in 2016 when in her second year at St Teresa’s College, Ernakulam, as a graduate of Communicative English.
Neeta says, “I had just returned to India from abroad. I’m not usually the kind of person who wears a lot of jewellery myself. But I love it on other people. I love seeing jewellery in bulk and hand-picking the most unique and beautiful sets. I knew this much: I did not have the money to manufacture products myself, so I knew that I’d needed to buy all the materials and make it myself to actually start something.”
Neeta Vijay Kumar
So, one fine day, Neeta went over to Kochi’s Broadway Market and bought all the materials that she thought she would need. With no formal education in jewellery design or even watching a tutorial video, she began by designing the pieces she already had in her head for so long. As a student, she would set a few hours aside to experiment with her vision. On bringing her accessories to the classroom, her friends began buying them. Slowly, the word began to spread.
Neeta went on to set up a stall during an exhibition at her college where people swarmed to buy from her collection. Thanks to the immediate success, she decided to set up an Instagram page for people to find her collections online. Her products are hand-made using beads, pearls and gemstones, now a part of her signature collection. The brand is particularly beloved for its signature layered chains. With a few breaks along the way, as Neeta tried to figure out the market fresh out of college, she rebranded it in 2019 as a curating space.
While she works full-time as a content developer at an advertising agency, she reaches out to vendors based in Jaipur, Hyderabad, Chennai and Kochi itself to curate her best finds on the platform. “Until 2019, my work was still that of a college student, with benefits and limitations of its own. But I reworked my business model over time. It became difficult for me to manage it all together, so this became the easiest way to keep my vision going,” says Neeta who now scours the length and breadth of the country in search of unique pieces of jewellery that speak to her.