A social worker by profession, Sonal’s heart has always been with the community – first in her native Bombay and later in her adopted New York. Through the experience of working with the hearing impaired, abused and victims of domestic violence from all age ranges, her heart grew tempered and keenly sensitised to the injustices of the world. A staunch and early believer in the importance of empowering women, Sonal raised her daughter into the tenacious talented and driven woman that she is today – all the while supporting her husband in the corporate world.
For a while Sonal curated a gallery in London, showcasing and celebrating the work of South Asian Masters – however it is the Saree that has captured her imagination the most. Throughout her life, Sonal has enjoyed learning from; and promoting artisans specialising in handloom Sarees from all over India. Picking up the moniker of ‘The Sari Queen’ she lives up to the name, with a vast and carefully curated collection of uniquely handmade sarees from artisans in and around India. When the Pandemic began in 2020, Sonal partnered with her daughter to synthesise a combination of her devotion to social causes and her passion for original handloom fashion, the fruit of their work is the artisanal brand KAANJJ.
From a young age, Karnika was exposed to the wonderful world of art and fashion that always surrounded her mother. Born in New York and later living in London & Hong Kong, she exemplifies the melting pot of style and taste that embodies the modern individual.
This modern stylistic flair is tempered with the storied Kisnadwala family history of ties to South Asian art, culture, tradition, and heritage. Karnika has had the pleasure of to witness the work of artisans through South East Asia, following silk from source to market in Thailand and Cambodia, seeing how ikats and patola sarees are painstakingly woven in Bali & Gujarat before they grace the waists of the fashionable, world over.
In London, Karnika completed her undergraduate degree in communications, marketing, and PR and her Masters degree in Luxury Brand Management. Using the knowledge she gained from experiences through her life, education and work; Karnika felt best placed to make her and her mother's vision for KAANJJ a reality.
In creating the KAANJJ collection, Karnika has been inspired by the Kisnadwala family values and heritage. Each piece of KAANJJ fabric is a carefully curated reflection of Kisnadwala family heirlooms passed down from generations before, shared here with you through KAANJJ for the benefit of generations to come.