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An award winning scientist and inventor, Damini Kumar has decided to tackle something a little different. Damini has recently launched an ecommerce site called Boutiqua. According to the Sunday Business Post, her shop features unique products that are handmade in India. With the help of her husband, Mark Canavan, her business is beginning to take off.

The couple came up with the idea when they visited India last Christmas. ‘‘I was fascinated by all the amazing handicrafts and artisan skills I saw there,” said Canavan. ‘‘I began researching a retail business and its feasibility when I arrived home. Then, when I was made redundant from my job in IT, we decided to go for it.”

While Canavan works on the business side of the project, Kumar is responsible for the design of the products. Her previous inventions include the world’s first non-drip spout in 1988. She has won a number of awards down through the years from Young British Female Inventor of the Year 2001 to the Irish Tatler Women in Innovation award 2010.

‘‘Designing in this case is about looking at the aesthetics more than the function, because it’s a bag or a cushion and not a non-drip spout,” she said. ‘‘However, for me, designing is the same, no matter what you’re designing, it combines function and aesthetics.”

Kumar considers herself both a scientist and artist. ‘‘From childhood, science and art have always been twin passions of mine,” she said.

Screenshot from Boutiqua

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Originally posted by Angela Shupe on December 20, 2010 in Ideas.

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