Radhika Chopra is the founder of No. 3 Clive Road. She breathes memories, experiences and life in her brand of teas, stationery and (yet to come) candles. Bespoke, select and exquisitely packaged, the curated products on the site are bound to lift you up. Sukanya Sharma speaks with her about turning entrepreneur and the rise of her brand.
- There is a long long history to this name…No.3 CliveRoad.
No. 3 Clive Road was named after the address in New Delhi where my father was born, in the year 1931. the same year that New Delhi was inaugurated as the new capital of India. For me the essence of the brand is the idea of returning home – we left India when we were very young and grew up in the United States, but have returned home holding onto our parents’ memories of India.
Radhika Chopra brings alive the bygone era with No.3 Clive Road
- No. 3 Clive Road is creating a legacy…what was your vision when you decided to start out?
The legacy of the brand is preserving the elegance of a bygone era of New Delhi’s history and of a family history. Our father’s childhood memories at the Lutyens’ designed bungalow at No. 3 Clive Road included enchanting afternoons spent with a large family in an open home with warmth, traditions and a history shared by all. Having travelled the world with these stories of our father’s childhood, we return to where it all started, to discover traces of those beautiful old-world experiences still very much a part of our lives. With No. 3 Clive Road, we bring you the essence of our treasured family heritage, translated with a modern sensibility. We started with tea and stationery because both bring a moment of calm and reflection when you return home, whether it’s your afternoon tea or writing a note to a loved one.
- Share a bit about the brand-concept and its Indian heritage.
No. 3 Clive Road is very much an Indian brand – the story is Indian and the products are made in India. The tea is a part of our country’s heritage that we should celebrate. The stationery captures vignettes of Delhi and Bombay. What sets us apart from other brands is our beautiful packaging and our attention to detail in preserving our history.
Where less is more: Radhika Chopra’s store is a bespoke reflection of the bygone era
- We realize it is not just the product that you are selling, but a whole experience that comes while consuming it; what was the idea behind that notion?
The teas are about a journey through India and it’s rich history. We had so much fun taking this journey and learning about different cities and creating the perfect blends that would transport you to that place and time in history. Whether it be the Aurangzeb Blend, with floral notes, taking you back in time to the Mughal era, or the Jaipur Blend, transporting you to a sunset overlooking the Aravali Hills.
- The packaging is a big part of your product experience – it has a life of its own.
I am a sucker for beautiful packaging and so in a way I created this brand for myself. I said to myself, if no one else bought it, I could always give it to my friends and family as gifts! It was important for me to create a brand that beautifully captured an ever-fading time in India, yet was modern and fresh.
6. How did stationery and tea come together – it’s pretty unique to your venture.
On my travels I buy tea, stationery and candles, so it was only natural that I would create a brand that would offer all three. The tea is about a journey through India, the stationery captures cities in India and the candle series will be introduced in the fall and will focus on a different aspect of India.
- Do you think women have a different perspective than men towards business?
I think it depends on the business and the customer base. For example, women know what other women need and want in a product, so in that sense women bring a different perspective than a man. In the case of No. 3 Clive Road, our brand brings an attention to detail and history and could have equally been created by a man or a woman. Building the business will depend on skill and passion.
- How can we not ask…how do you like your chai?
My morning cup of masala chai has always been my most cherished moment of the day. It inspired me to create our Madurai Masala Blend – which is a twist on the classic masala chai. These days, I spend about an hour with Maya, my 10-year old daughter, just before heading out to school. We’ve never been known to rush in the morning. With that morning cup of tea and a lovely chat with my daughter about what’s planned for the day, including how things are going on the playground with friends, we ease ourselves into a hectic schedule. It’s our ritual every morning.
Photograph Credit in Feature Banner: Indelust