The Conscious Store in Hyderabad aims to revive mindful experiences in retail
“Do you really want to consume sulphur first thing in the morning?”asks Jhans of Uzuri, a wellness startup. She was addressing the gathering at the first workshop titled ‘Winter Cleanse’ at the newly-opened The Conscious Store on Road no 11, Banjara Hills. Jhansi was explaining how a spoon of sugar that we used in our coffee comes from seven glasses of sugarcane juice mixed with sulphur!
“It’s not just a retail store for handcrafted products, but one for customers who like to go slow, question and understand the process and stories behind everything sold here. We will also have workshops and discussions every weekend on conscious living, wellness, cooking and baking with traditional wholesome grains, crafts etc,” explains social entrepreneur Hema Balakrishnan who runs the 1,500 sq. ft. store. Besides Hema’s handmade retail terracotta jewellery line Color D Earth, it also stocks designer handlooms by Abhihaara, owned by her friend and award-winning entrepreneur Sudha Rani. The store has ‘consciously’ curated handmade products by artisans from across India, says Hema. Among the other products are ceramic pottery, handcrafted home décor, natural skin and hair care products. “We call it ‘conscious’ because the store empowers artisans, weavers and food producers and gives them a sustainable livelihood,” says Hema, pointing out what’s different about the store.
The outlet has jewellery, handlooms and health food in separate zones and a small open area to conduct workshops with a capacity to seat 15. “We don’t want to just hard sell our products to our customers. We want them to make an informed decision and these workshops help them do so. Our second workshop was about Christmas baking where we had home baker Rama Amarnath demonstrate how to make Linzer cookies with whole grain flours.” Hema has lined up a two-hour workshop on ‘Leading yourself through Change’ by life coach Divya Sriram in the New Year. “It’s also my dream to have a café to celebrate conscious snacks and beverages,” she adds.
Rs 300 onwards.
Pics: Sathya Keerthi