The Sani Story

Niki and Ritika Shamdasani on Rent the Runway

Welcome to Sani. 

Sani was founded with the goal of increasing the visibility of South Asian craftsmanship and techniques. Now run between Delhi, India and North Carolina, we create South Asian-inspired clothing and accessories. 

My sister Ritika and I started Sani when we realized how disconnected we felt from our culture. When we realized how many other South Asian Americans felt the same way, we knew something had to change. 

When our moms were growing up in India, if they couldn’t find what they wanted, they made it themselves. So that’s what we decided to do as well. We were two sisters that were determined to bring our cultural identities together through a brand and help women everywhere channel the radiant energy rooted in South Asian fashion.

    Our Mission

    Each Sani piece is distinct and crafted with the highest commitment to quality, design, and experience. Our collections are made in small batches by real people, using traditional craftsmanship and techniques. 

    We strive to be as responsible and sustainable a business as possible (and we’re still learning how to do it!). We work on considering all of the costs when creating fashion, not just the tangible ones. That includes operating with ethical manufacturing partners, reducing inventory waste, and batch shipping to reduce our carbon footprint.

    We value our heritage and family, and when you wear Sani, we want you to feel like a part of ours.

    Sketch of Sani dress

    Niki and Ritika at Rent the Runway

    Meet the Founders

    Sani was started by my sister Ritika and me (hi it's Niki!). 

    I came to Sani after starting my career in venture capital and consulting. After graduating from UNC-Chapel Hill, I joined Deloitte’s federal consulting practice. Soon after, I was asked to come on as the Chief of Staff at Matter, a startup accelerator for early stage media companies. After years spent supporting startups and exploring market needs, I left Matter and New York to start Sani with Ritika. I now also teach design thinking part-time and have worked with organizations that include the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, PRX, and Brit + Co. 

    Since Sani started, Ritika has been balancing school with building the brand. Through summers spent with Girls Who Code, Kode with Klossy, and then Amazon, she cultivated her interest in technology x fashion. She is now a Fashion Development and Product Management major at the Wilson College of Textiles at NC State University.

    Sani is for celebrating special moments and our duality as first-generation Indian-Americans. For us that started with formalwear but always with an eye to what it meant to show multiple parts of ourselves in every facet of our lives. Thanks for joining us on this journey.