Of all the stalls we visited at the Annual NASA convention grounds in January 2017 at Jaipur, one particularly crowded attraction caught our attention. Filled with intricate and contemporary hand-made products ranging from wall-hangings to pencil-holders, it was any designers delight! After a quick chat with the organizer, we learned that this was a concept design studio started by three architects, and we lost no time in interviewing Ar. Nikhil Kala, one of the co-founders, about their idea behind Schedio.
What is Schedio? What would you describe it as?
We are a team of three architects, all based in Jaipur and alumni of NIT Jaipur. Schedio is our initiative towards designing products and accessories of various typology. Schedio is a concept design studio, committed to providing unique personalized solutions for all kinds of design needs. Our products are a perfect amalgamation of latest digital techniques and handcrafted details. We experiment with various materials to create individualistic products that become style statements by themselves.
The question asked by most – how and why did you get into Architecture? Had it always been a passion, or was it by chance?
Probably, the entry can be considered to be by chance but now it runs through our veins. Architectural education has been a very prominent factor which led to this idea.
How and when did the concept of Schedio arise, for the three of you?
It was a few years ago when two of us were pursuing our post graduation from CEPT University where we came across the use of laser cutting for model making. Amit, being the Da Vinci of our group started exploring the technique and came up with some brilliant product ideas. Later when we shifted back to Jaipur, we met our tutor and guide, Ar. Nischal Jain along with his wife Ar. Kavita Jain, and we pitched the ideas to them. It was their confidence in our idea which gave us the final push. In fact, they agreed to become our partner/advisor in the business and to continue to guide us.
What were the challenges you faced during your initial stages?
The first challenge for us was to convince our parents. To keep them comfortable with our idea, we continued to work part-time at different offices. Another major concern was the continuous expenditure on operation and material while we continued to experiment.
…and how has the concept behind Schedio evolved over the years?
We believe each product should be passionately crafted to reflect the user’s identity and personality. In that sense, the basic idea has remained the same, thought the range of products has become much larger than what we had initially planned.
Give us a few examples of some of the products you design.
Our product range includes a plethora of designed objects – art installations, customized wall arts and partition screens, lamps, tabletop accessories, multipurpose boxes, vases, gift articles, mementos, trophies, diaries, planners, board games, jewellery, and even complete interior design solutions. We try styling our gear with funky, youthful patterns, quotes and graphics and hence are rapidly gaining popularity among the youth.
How does a Schedio product come to life?
A simple hanging lamp, for example, starts with basic sketching, followed by a discussion (often heated) over the design, fixtures, joinery, financial feasibility, etc. Then we prepare samples, followed by more discussions before testing the samples. Then we tweak the design a bit here and there before preparing another prototype for testing once again. This process is repeated until ALL THREE of us approve the design. Finishing is an essential part of the design process and we do not consider it separate or detached from the procedure.
The materials you use for your products are quite unconventional – what’s the story behind that?
Years and years of exploration with various materials and results that showed the vast possibilities with MDF and Acrylic sheets!
How has Architecture school helped you in what you’re doing now?
We don’t think that we would have been anywhere close to what we are doing now if we would not have studied architecture. It’s that zeal and the dedication to think out of the box and trying to achieve what seems to be impossible that has been the driving force which has most definitely come from our architectural education.
A day in the life of Schedio – what’s that like?
A typical day starts with chai. We do not really follow a schedule in terms of design or exploring new ideas. Although the production part continues to be as per planned schedules. There is no fixed timing for Lunch or other breaks.
In situations such as last-moment large delivery orders, there is no difference between day and night in terms of work timings.
What’s the best or worst thing about branching away from what you have studied to be in Architecture school – do you still practice Architecture?
Best or Worst? I think it’s too early to comment on that but yes, sometimes we do miss the joy of designing spaces.
You have recently done some art installations. Tell us a bit more about that – the concept behind the installations, and the public response.
Yes, we make sure that we put out art installations once a while. One, it helps maintain the market presence and two, it gives a chance of exploring things where we need not worry about the business aspect of our designs/ideas.
So, what is next in line for Schedio? Where do you see yourself, say, 10 years from now?
A lot more to come, new products, innovative designs and affordable customization. 10 years down the line, we would want to have our retail and customization stores in all major cities in India.
Every artist has a few moments in their life when they know “this is what I should be doing”. When did that happen to you (or) has it happened to you yet?
It happens to us so many times. Whenever anyone of us designs something really unique, we think that yes, this is what we should be doing.
A few words of inspiration for those still finding their calling?
“You will find IT, just when you stop searching outside”
Founders Ar. Amit Jayant (Da Vinci), Ar. Nischal Jain (The Dreamer), Ar. Nikhil Kala (Game of Numbers)
Schedio is a concept design studio which provides explicitly designed innovative products to serve a wide range of purposes, as mentioned above. Headed by three Architects and designers, Nischal, Nikhil and Amit, they are based out of Jaipur, Rajasthan. You can get in touch with them via their Facebook page.