A cuppa with Boom Shankar founder Dui Cameron about being a gypsy, living in India & giving back.
How did Boom Shankar begin?
I’ve been a fashionista since I was two years old and have been playing dress ups ever since. I was making clothes from a very young age but actually Boom Shankar was born when I was living in India in the early 90’s and needed to make some money. I was living in between Goa in the south of India which has an awesome international market and Manali in the Himalayas which has no market at all. So I sold to people around the world in the months that I was in Goa and in the off months, did sweet nothing in the Himalayas except play with my dogs. It was wonderful!
Who’s behind it and what is your background?
I have a fantastic team now in Australia that run the business and also a fantastic team in India. We’re quite a big group now. It’s wonderful and I feel very blessed and grateful. My background is a universal artist Gypsy.
Tell us what your brand is all about. What is your company ethos?
My brand is about making women feel wonderful about themselves and sharing the love. Making sure we give back to everyone is also a big part of our brand and ethos. Over many years we’ve been involved with so many different projects. At present, we are supporting a fantastic charity called Forget me Not who work through local organisations in India, Nepal and Uganda to reunite trafficked children with their families. Check them out – their work is truly inspirational!
Tell us about your brand’s creative process. How do things get made from start to finish?
This question I could write a book on… basically I come up with a theme or a story of sorts and then create a collection around it. My inspiration can come from just about anything!
What type of material and cotton do you use?
I love cotton so we use it a lot; however, I am starting to play with all sorts of fabrics now. I’m loving textures at the moment that are woven into the cottons.
How many kids do have?
I have 1 boy; he is 15 years old now. He grew up in India but is now back in Australia to do high school, he still comes to India with me at the end of most years. He loves it there!
How do you kids influence your work?
Well my next winter collection was influenced by a road trip I did with my son. You will have to wait to see…!
Tell us about your life in India. How did you find yourself there and what is your relationship like to it now?
India is our other home. We have a small farm house, 1 dog, 5 cats, 8 tortoises and a cow. I have been drawn to the country since I was very young. My uncle lived there to so it has always had a huge place in my heart.
Doing business in another country comes with surprises. What has been your biggest surprise about doing business there?
There are always surprises in businesses, no matter what country you are in. I love both India and Australia and am grateful that I get to work so closely within both cultures.
Describe the moment you thought you could be onto something and the business began.
I have never really thought that. I could create forever, I just love it. It’s the love of creating and people enjoying what I create which makes it so special. I have just done what I love – the rest is a fluke.
Tell us about your biggest challenge.
My biggest challenge is working to timelines as I’m a bit of a free spirit. As the business grows that’s my biggest challenge!
Tell us your biggest win.
Ummmmmm being healthy and happy!
What’s the most satisfying thing about running a small business?
Socialising at my morning coffee spot with my dog.
What’s your creative process like? Do you design everything yourself or have collaborators?
It’s all me at the moment but I’m open to anything.
What’s your most treasured items at the moment and why?
My snowboarding boots. And why? Because I can’t believe I can do it and I feel like I’m a teenager when boarding.
What’s the biggest thing you’ve learnt about yourself in running the business?
To not take anything personally.
What is one piece of advice you’d give to yourself five years ago
Don’t take anything personally ❤