“It all started with the word ‘comfort’. While researching, I came up with the idea of making someone feel comfortable in a beautiful way,” said 20-year-old Haziqah binti Haji Rajemi, who just completed her studies at Kolej International Graduate Studies (KIGS). She was refering to products, she turned out from gemstones.
As she wanted to create a product that could help overcome anxiety, Haziqah chose gemstones as her product as it has a variety of benefits and can help overcome and control anxiety through beauty and uniqueness, making one feel at ease.
Haziqah created jewellery sets comprising bracelets, rings, and earrings with gemstones associated with easing anxiety such as amethyst, kunzite, amazonite, and tiger’s eye. She uses her own money to create the products with her parents’ assistance, who have been very supportive. Haziqah believes this will be a good source of income as people love gemstones, especially stones believed to have specific health benefits.
For now, she has no plans to make this her main profession unless she has enough budget, time and a high demand for the products.
She also plans to sell her products online, which she believes is a good way to supplement her income.
“Of course, there will be a lot of challenges when doing online business. It requires a certain budget and if no one buys the products, it will be a loss.”
Fellow college mate, Nur Billah Izzah binti Haji Kassim, also has the same interest in beauty. She is interested in Brunei’s traditional woven textile or kain tenunan. She hopes the younger generation can appreciate it’s beauty.
Just like Haziqah, Nur Billah is a final year student who was given the opportunity to showcase her product, Corak, a puzzle to create an awareness among the public to appreciate the value of Brunei’s woven textile.
It mainly focusses on creating a puzzle that incorporates the woven pattern and learning the different types of weaving patterns. There are seven types of weaving patterns – Kain Si Lubang Bangsi, Kain Si Pugut, Kain Bertabur, Kain Bertabur dan Berinti, Kain Beragi dan Bertabur and Kain Jongsarat. It is also to learn that the weaving process takes times and discipline.
“In this era, the older generation is learning to use digital weaving. But the younger generation needs to learn the traditional art of weaving so that it will not be completely lost.”
The public needs to make an effort to inform the current generation about traditional weaving. It is important to pass on to the next generation this, she said.
Nur Billah began her journey by studying the different types of tenunan patterns and then designed her own pattern based on what she had learnt. Her flower motifs were inspired from cross stitch motifs.
“As people have been showing interest in my products, Insya Allah, I believe it will generate a good income in the future. I plan to start my own business one day and diversify the products.”
She also sees the potential of starting off with an online business as it is a good platform that can create exposure. The challenges would be that the customers will not have any form of connection since they’re only doing business from the other side of a screen.
Hence it is up to how trustable a customer is, especially when it involves cancelling orders at the last hour, Nur Billah said.
However, on a positive note, Nur Billah is confident that this can be tackled accordingly and different business owners may have their own set of ways to avoid such issues.
What’s more important is to create a bond that will make business owners and clients be more transparent and trustworthy. The two students showcased their products at Vibe exhibition at KIGS recently.