The Highs & Lows Of Brother-Sister Duos That Are Creating Amazing Work Together

The Highs & Lows Of Brother-Sister Duos That Are Creating Amazing Work Together

While the notion of Raksha Bandhan warms the heart of anyone who’s fortunate enough to have a sibling, let’s take a minute to remember that this celebration has extremely patriarchal roots: In the old days, queens would send rakhis to neighbouring kingdoms as a token of brotherhood, and the ruler of said kingdom would offer his protection in return.

Switch to the 21st century, where the traditional context of it is very outdated. Today, girls tie rakhis on the wrists of their brothers—or on the wrist of a brotherly figure—merely as a token of love (not battle strategy), and in turn, the brother vows to protect her. So it’s a good time to celebrate the bond between brother and sister—now, when they are more equal than ever.  Say hello to the new avatar of Raksha Bandhan, where gender roles are more balanced.
We caught up with a series of brothers and sisters across the country that have created something special together and asked them to rat each other out. Here’s what we found out:

I. Abhishek and Rhunjun Gupta

“We fight and argue and disagree a lot, but at the end of the day we’ll guide each other home no matter where we are.”

Abhishek and Rhunjun Gupta are the co-founders of the venture, ZipOut, which is a health, wellness, and happiness store. They deal in de-stress programs by involving their clientele in creative and fun programs like dance and yoga.

Three things about their siblings that inspires them:

Rhunjun:  He’s great at corporate communication. I look up to him for that. He has faith in himself and is able to steer himself in difficult situations in a cool manner. He is fun loving and has a great, rather witty sense of humor, which I really admire.
Abhishek: She’s very ambitious, focused, and has high levels of perseverance, and works to get what she wants. She has a very high sense of self-belief —a quality that’s so rare in today’s world. She cares very deeply about people around her and is a positive influence on a lot of people who treat her as a mentor.

Two things they would change about each other:
Rhunjun: Only two? Just kidding. I don’t really want to change him. He’s a gem. I just want to feel more included in his life and vice-versa. That’s all.
Abhishek: She waits for me to order desserts and then eats it up instead of ordering her own! She cares too much about people and at times thinks about them before herself—too much of a good thing isn’t the best at times!

Find out what these siblings have been up to by following them on their website. You can follow Abhishek and Runjhun on Facebook.

II. Aditi, Rohit and Akshay Mokashi

“Khaaneka, peeneka, marneka, jeeneka, chalneka, phirneka, utneka, girneka, tension nai leneka, bhai se poochneka, kasa kal, bara hal, we are mumbhais.”

These 3 literally sent us the most organised excel sheet we’ve ever seen, which quickly catapulted them to cult-favourite status. This brothers-sister duo runs a small, Mumbai-based restaurant called EatOut At Wadala. Why the name? To merge two creative aspects of Mumbai—food and the bhai-girl lingo, which is creative and supremely funny. They serve burgers, sandwiches, wraps and fusion meals—and vouch for the fact that the taste and creativity they offer isn’t available elsewhere.


Three things about their siblings that inspires them:
Akshay: Aditi is hardworking. She’s a super ninja who manages so much work and then goes and runs marathons. She’s also always smiling, it’s almost creepy but she spreads positivity for sure.
Rohit: Aditi saves my ass when I have to make Thai curry. Basically, she is everywhere. If we were a football team, she would be our striker and we would be the wingers. She also plans most of our work and is extremely motivating.
Aditi: Akshay is the dependable don. Gets. Shit. Done. He never says no to work. Calm as a cucumber even in the most frustrating situations. Rohit’s an amazing chef. Really creative. He loves what he does and was definitely born to do this. His fitness regime is inspiring and motivating too.

Two things they would change about each other:
Akshay: I wish Aditi would remember things! She’s too absent-minded.
Rohit: Aditi’s forgetfulness. She can also get mean when we fight, but that’s a sibling thing.
Aditi: Akshay forgets to keep accounts and ignores his health because of work. Rohit could be more disciplined and he is very short-tempered. He loses his cool in critical situations.

Check out the trio’s work on EatOut At Wadala’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

III. Aditya and Priyanka Udani

“We may be the two most different siblings, but somehow, someway, our contrasting traits form a great balance.”

Aditya and Priyanka Udani are the masterminds behind the menswear label Garcon, a contemporary t-shirt brand. They began working on the brand in June 2014, and in January 2015 the label was launched. Priyanka heads the design team while Aditya is in charge of the sales, marketing and production.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:

Priyanka:  His enthusiasm and his energy. He is always excited to brainstorm and come up with new ways to make our brand stand out. Garçon has been his pet project from the get-go and he convinced me of his vision even when I was not totally sold. He is involved in every aspect of the brand be it sales, marketing, design. And most importantly, his ability to always look at positives and the bigger picture and not get bogged down by stressful situations when they arise.
Aditya: She is a perfectionist.  She can drive the design/sampling team up the wall, until the results come out exactly the way she wants. No matter how stressful the situation is, she is extremely calm and composed.  She is sometimes oblivious of the chaos around her and has an ability to focus on what needs to be done. She isn’t prone to regular timings, and it seems that things may not get done in time, but it’s amazing how she always manages to get the job done.

Two things they would change about each other:

Priyanka: He is very impatient and he isn’t the most cost conscious person I know.
Aditya: I wish she were a bit more time-conscious. For her, the concept of minutes and seconds do not exist.  Hopefully, this will change. She needs to be a little more organised. She is constantly misplacing sketches and designs that she may have liked in the past, and then turning the office upside down trying to locate it.

 You can follow this duo and see what they have been up to on their website and Facebook. If you feel like shopping a bit, do check out their collection.

 IV. Akanksha and Ashmeet Kapoor

Lean, Mean, Crazy Sibling Machine (courtesy- Delhi Secret Supper Club) Also -Critically analysing every person, and giving them made up adjectives like choochaleetas.

 Akanksha (Marketing Manager) & Ashmeet (Founder & CEO) run the Delhi-based I Say Organic, that believes in giving people the option of eating safe food and supporting farmers who grow this food. It is the beginning of a movement towards sustainable production and responsible consumption. Under the surface, their vision is to make sustainable production a reality and to have a world full of happy and fulfilled people. They launched in 2012, and it didn’t take long to establish the reputation of serving Delhi-NCR with the best quality farm-fresh produce, being the most convenient service for authentic organic produce, and becoming the biggest organic fresh produce player. I Say Organic home delivers organic fruits, veggies and other organic groceries across Delhi/NCR seven days a week.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:

Akanksha: His passion for what he does and how he is so strong and positive about his beliefs. He is true to his principles. His ability to be a great listener and ability to give a straightforward opinion and at the same time be an amazing friend, and of course, how focused he is.
Ashmeet: She is always ready to help those she loves at any point of time. She is self-driven, straightforward and won’t put up with bullshit.

Two things they would change about each other:
Akanksha: His stubbornness and the fact that he trusts people easily.
Ashmeet: How she is short tempered and she needs to learn to take feedback better/more constructively.

 Follow I Say Organic on their website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

V. Divya Suri Singh, Deeksha Suri and Keshav Suri

 “Even though we have the strongest bond and family values, we are very different individuals, and therefore, bring varied strength to our company.”

Under the guidance of Dr. Jyotsna Suri, Divya, Deeksha and Keshav have been running the Lalit group of hotels since 2006. With a philosophy to ‘develop destinations, not just hotels’ they have been working towards involving the local population at their hotels and helping to promote their craft, culture, and cuisine.
While all three of them are Executive Directors of the group, each one of them have specific, demarcated roles. Divya, the eldest, leads the legal cell and procurement functions for the group; Deeksha, the middle sister, spearheads the sales, revenue management, HR and internal audit functions and Keshav, the youngest, spearheads the food and beverage operations of the group as well as the entire marketing and communications vertical. He also heads the current and future expansion plans of the group.

Three things about their siblings that inspire them:

Divya: What inspires me about Keshav is his ability to be innovative and think outside the box. Not to mention, his compassionate and helpful nature, and joie de vivre. I have never come across a person with as large a heart.  Deeksha’s sense of discipline, dedication to work, and stringent exercise routine inspires me everyday. She is a stickler for a well-planned regime that pushes her limits.
Deeksha: The top three things that inspire me about Divya are: her quality of being consistent, her photographic memory, and her level of patience.  For Keshav, it has to be his creativity, attention to detail, and his conviction. He knows what he wants and goes after it with immense focus.
Keshav:  Divya is a saint! She’s always looking at the good in people. She generally has a positive outlook, even towards problems at work. Most of all, I admire her immense patience. Deeksha’s time management is inspirational by itself, especially the way she manages to find time for her fitness routine. Her supreme dedication in a personal and professional capacity, and her devotion to her work are also equally inspiring.

Two things they would change about each other:
Divya: Keshav needs to start exercising and not let everything cause the same high level of stress. I would really like Deeksha to get out of her routine sometimes. I want her to relax a little more.
Deeksha: Two things I would change about Divya? Well, she is too empathetic, so that is one. But that’s all! Two things I would change about Keshav? Punctuality…and punctuality again!
Keshav: I think Divya could get a little more aggressive and maybe be a little less mature in some situations. She needs to have more fun and not take life that seriously! Deeksha should just learn to not take her work so seriously and learn how to disconnect and switch off from work at times. She needs to take more holidays!

 Follow the trio’s work on their website, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages.

VI. Gulnar and Yuvraj Virk

 “We often find ourselves telling each other – ‘We’re in this together. Where we go and what we do lies solely in our hands’.”

Together, Gulnar and Yuvraj Virk run Hashtag Marketing, an integrated marketing communications company with a mission to create and maintain a prominent position for your business in the right target markets at the right time. In today’s competitive jungle, with digital weapons and instinctual strategies, they provide the sharpened tools and tailored tactics to transform your cub into a king and lead you to the helm of affairs.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
Gulnar: Yuvraj’s ability to stay calm in any and every situation, his maturity to handle different tasks, and his excellence in creativity is what I find most inspiring.
Yuvraj: Her ability to get things done, her determination to always take on the most challenging tasks, and her positivity are a few traits that I find most inspiring. She makes sure there is never a dull moment at work.

Two things they would change about each other:

Gulnar: His calmness, during events especially, and his ability to prioritise.

Yuvraj: Would definitely love some stillness. It is because she is always on the move that I find it difficult to sit her down sometimes and have a conversation at length over work topics. She also tends to get stressed at times when I need her to be calm and collected.

 Find out what the duo has been up to with HashTag Marketing on their Facebook page.

VII. Shefali and Hershey Desai

 “My model for business is The Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other’s kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. Great things in business are never done by one person, they’re done by a team of people. That’s how it is with us, we balance each other and make a wonderful team.”

Based out of Mumbai, Shefali and Hershey Desai run their own design studio in Khar West. At Base 501, design is in their heart and they believe that good design is the key to making the clients stand apart in the market today. With seven years of combined experience consulting clients and agencies on the importance of quality design solutions, they apply this knowledge every day in their work, listening & guiding them to build meaningful brand executions. Shefali is responsible for the overall design direction and client satisfaction while Hershey currently manages the tasks of defining and implementing strategic business initiatives as well as company-wide design excellence.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
 Shefali: He is good at identifying the details that matter most—ones that affect people’s experiences with our design. He is tenacious and almost always finds a solution when things go awry sometimes. He quickly adapts to changing circumstances. And he strives for perfection in work, no matter how big or small the assignment may be.
Hershey: She has natural artistic talent. It’s amazing to see her designing her doodles. She is passionate about her work. That’s the main driving force behind creativity. You have to love what you do in order to do it well. She is good at striking a balance between having fun and being professional.

Two things they would change about each other:
 Shefali:  He can be impatient. For him it is like, “Rome wasn’t built in a day—but it should have been.” His addiction to technology: in the last two years I can’t recall seeing him without his laptop/phone/iPad always in his hand.
Hershey: Her overuse of hashtags in posts. It aggravates me to no end to see her status updates. And she can sometimes be obstinate.

 Follow their work at Base, 501 on their website and Facebook page.

VIII. Shikhar and Anushka Manchanda

 ‘We can make the world spin however we want. It’s all on us.’ – Equals by Mutemath

Shikhar and Anushka Manchanda started experimenting with each other’s projects and found that they wanted a very similar sound. They’re currently working on improving their skill set and will work on more music together once they’re back in Bombay.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
 Anushka: Shikhar is great at D.I.Y. Whether it’s soundproofing or building a vocal booth, hooking up some lights in his room, or creating a poster of the universe for his ceiling, he will do his research and hook it up. He’s a big guy with a soft centre. He’s respectful and thoughtful. He’s the guy who will hold the door for you or offer to carry your bags. He’s all heart. He raises the bar for the men in my life.
The music he writes is unpredictable. There’s changes in time signatures and patterns when you least expect them. There’s a raw aggression in his production. He’s very connected to the earth and he is very real. You can hear that in the material he writes.
Shikhar: She has always supported me and whatever I have chosen to do. From buying me gear and equipment, to clothes and shoes, she spoils me. There are a lot of traits that I adore in her. Can’t really jot down only 3 but at the top of my list would be:
1. She is carefree and does what she wants. She doesn’t think about being judged. She has an ease about herself and can talk to anybody.

2. She takes care of the people she loves and she is very protective of her family.

3. I love the musical concepts and ideas that she has. I am always excited to work on a project that she has started.

Two things they would change about each other:
Anushka: I’d love for him to have more patience. He blows up real quick. He cools down in a flash but you don’t want to be in his line of fire when he gets mad.
Shikhar: She trusts people too easily. She wants to help everyone and often forgets about herself. She needs to start thinking more about herself.

 Follow Anushka on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and on her website. Follow Shikhar on Soundcloud, Instagram and Facebook.

IX. Siddharth and Tanya Rawal

 “When two people have a common, overarching goal, it unites them at a deeper level and makes them forget about their petty differences.”

 Siddharth and Tanya Rawal launched their men’s casual shirts brand STRAWLOUS nearly six months ago. Working together was never part of the plan for either of them. For over six years, Siddharth has been a model and he has modelled for some of India’s top designers, such as Manish Malhotra, Rocky S, Rohit Bal and Varun Bahl. Tanya, on the other hand, completed her MBA from the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad, and joined the family business. Their family has been in the menswear manufacturing and export business for a long time. While both of them did work in the business, they never really interacted as they handled different functions. A few years ago, when their exports started slowing down, they decided to change their business strategy all together: they decided to adapt European fashion to the Indian market at affordable prices. They are currently retailing online on KOOVS, and soon, they will be available on Myntra and Jabong as well.

“We didn’t want to be a me-too global brand. Instead, we wanted to create a niche for a specific product that we could specialize in and excel at. At the same time, we wanted a fun, colourful, cheeky brand image that would be an extension of our own personalities.”

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
Sid: I’m inspired by Tanya’s laser focus when she wants to achieve something, her attention to detail and the fact that she unabashedly embraces her quirks regardless of what other people think.
Tanya: I admire Sid’s effortless social skills, which have really helped our brand, his ability to motivate people around him and his flawless bullshit detector!
Two things they would change about each other:
Sid: I would tell Tanya to relax more and stress less. Also to be more open-minded when it comes to people.
Tanya: I’d like Sid to be more disciplined and less stubborn.

 You can check out their clothing collection on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. You can pick up something from their line at KOOVS.

X. Smita and Sidhant Khanna

 “Having fun and taking on challenges together when things are good or bad.”

Smita and Sidhant Khanna started NOTE Developers, an experimental design practice, two years ago. Their first project was to design and build luxury homes in Alibaug. The idea was to provide contextual, high design homes in a location that had been saturated with poor quality work. The project was completed earlier this year and it has received worldwide recognition.


Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
Smita: His vision, dedication and his innovative mind.
Sidhant: Her independent nature, creativity and the commitment she shows in her work.
Two things they would change about each other:
Smita: He needs to learn to manage his stress and he needs to learn to be strict.
Sidhant: She needs to learn to compromise and accept that sometimes, things can go wrong.

Follow their work at Note-D on the website.

XI. Sonali and Sohel Lalvani

“Calm in the storm”

 In October 2010, Sonali and Sohel Lalvani started ToniQ Retail Brands Pvt Ltd by launching their accessories brand, toniQ. Through this platform they hoped to make fashionable accessories accessible to a larger market. This October will mark five years, and during this time, they have launched four accessories brands, each completely unique in concept and catering to different segments. Their products are available both in stores as well online retail shops.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
Sonali: Sohel is extremely relaxed under pressure. He can come up with solutions by looking at a long-term picture. He is a great leader. He has an incredible ability to inspire and motivate the team.  In addition, his strong sense of aesthetics benefits our brand and all our communications have a Sohel signature to it.
Sohel: Speed! She needs things done quickly. Once we’ve conceptualised and ideated a plan, she wants it implemented immediately. For Sonali, it is never ‘when’, it’s always ‘now’. Time is extremely important to her. She is a quick learner and has the ability to grasp new concepts with ease. And to add to it, she has a great sense of forecasting trends. She understands our customers’ needs and ensures we’ve got the right product at the right price.

Two things they would change about each other:
Sonali: Pick up the phone! Sohel has a love-hate relationship with returning calls and that should definitely change, considering we work in two different cities.
Sohel: No changes. She’s perfect.

 To get a sneak-peak into their work, check out  the toniQ website and on Facebook.

XII. Tanya and Karan Nambiar

 “We get knocked down, but we get up again, you’re never gonna keep us down!”

 The dynamic brother sister duo that are taking over the karaoke scene in Delhi NCR, Tanya and Karan jointly-run a company called The Soundshop that doesvoiceovers and music production. They host karaoke nights together and have been doing so for four years now. They were awarded the Best Karaoke Host at the Provogue Nightlife Awards and it was a shared love for music got them to work together. Apart from hosting karaoke nights, they both are also musicians and have their respective bands. While Karan is the lead vocalist for a progressive metal band called Guillotine, Tanya is the lead vocalist for the indie band Gravy Train.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
 Tanya: He’s very positive and has a lot more belief in things than I do. We connect very well musically so his opinion is highly trusted in whatever I do. And I love how honest he is. He doesn’t butter things up just for the sake of it. I live the fact that he will always speak his mind no matter what the situation.
Karan: Go-getter – If there’s something to be got she’s probably already gotten it. Very inspiring for somebody as lazy as me!

The Talker – She has her way with words and people, I’m more on the introvert-ish side and new people make me uncomfortable so when yapper Tanya walks in, everything’s taken care of.

Fitness Freak – The world takes a backseat when it comes to her workout and I’m usually on that backseat with a double cheese and a six-pack. Her willpower really shines through.

Two things they would change about each other:
 Tanya: He should get an award for losing things! He’s seriously the most irresponsible and forgetful person in the world. He’s already lost 20 car/bike keys, 35 debit cards and 25 wallets. These numbers will increase by the time this article is out. He’s also Mr. Lazy. I think he secretly wishes he had a remote for everything so he wouldn’t have to move his butt.
Karan: Tanya’s ability to grasp numbers—ironically so. Chimpanzees have shown better mathematical skills than her. Her temper. Tick her off the wrong way and you’re dead meat, punk!

 Follow Tanya on her Facebook and Instagram accounts. Follow Karan on his Facebook page.

XIII. Tarang and Tanvi Arora

 “She feels I am the scary elder brother. But I am not. I am just looking out for her and I am quite chilled out.”- Tarang

“There’s no better friend than a brother and there’s no better brother than you.”- Tanvi

Amrapali has been the Arora family business for years now. It used to be run by their father, Mr. Rajiv Arora and their uncle, Mr. Rajesh Ajmera. Tarang Arora joined the business soon after his studies and at the same time, help his father and uncle teach Tanvi about various aspects of jewellery from different types of settings to the different types of stones. Tanvi got involved in the business when she moved to London in 2008 for her higher education. From just one store in Selfridges, London they have expanded and now they have stores in Beauchamps place, Knightsbridge and in Harrods.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:

Tarang: She is a great a cook. Since childhood she used to love knowing what is made with what ingredients etc. So we get great food once in a while at home! She has great leadership skills . She is mostly at our flagship store in Jaipur. She keeps the staff happy and always gives them a chance to say what their issues and problems are and sorts them out in a very mature manner.She is a good salesperson. As she was doing here Jewellery Designing from LCF in London she worked a lot at our different stores. She was working in both Selfridges and Harrods and I think to go through the training and to be a part of this atmosphere sharpens your skills of selling. I think she definitely has that.

Tanvi: His eye for detail and how he is such a perfectionist, He is also very creative.

Two things they would change about each other:

Tarang: Timings and punctuality. I think she takes this in a more relaxed manner than she should. She needs to be more focused. She can be easily distracted. Which I think happens to everyone at this age as life is not about seriousness yet. But being focused is the only way to achieve one’s dreams.

Tanvi: He is very short tempered and impatient.

 XIV. Zainali J. and Azra J.

“Chocolate isn’t chocolate if it doesn’t shrink your clothes!”

Zainali J. and Azra J. believe that colour and art is for everyone. With that in mind, they started Alpha Cube to make lives a little funkier. So what is Alpha Cube all about? It’s actually all about you. It’s a way to express who you really are, stand out in the crowd, basically—really wear your personality. Every Alpha Cube product is one of a kind. Their most recent venture is into painting wall murals under the name ZAY along with a friend. They completed murals in Fat Man’s Cafe and Brick House Cafe among other projects. Lots more Good Stuff coming soon!

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
 Zainali: His patience, his dedication to his art, the zest for travel and adventure.
Azra: Her kindness, confidence to do things and that she is a good driver.

Two things they would change about each other:
 Zainali: His unpunctuality and his incapability to take short showers. (Hence, the first problem)
Azra: Her inability to hear her phone/alarm/anything ring and that she never picks up the cat litter!

 Check out some of their crazy art work on Alpha Cube’s Facebook page.

XV.  Zeenat and Sameer Kulavoor

 “It’s like cycling—one of us pushes the right pedal and the other pushes the left. We maintain a balance and move ahead well together.”

 In 2002, Samer started working as an independent illustrator and visual designer. His music-related art and design projects helped him gain popularity, and about six years later he started a larger project called BombayDuckDesigns– an independent design studio. By then, his projects not only involved illustration but type and design too. Zeenat joined him in 2010.

Three things about their sibling that inspires them:
 Sameer: Zee’s ability to bond with animals, especially cats—she is obsessed! Our cat, Sumo, probably loves her more. She even has a cat blog, which is a nice realistic documentation of cats around Bombay. She has an ability to bring about certain calmness around her added to her ability to multitask, and her amazing design management skills. I am all over the place most of the time. She is the glue in our Kulavoor family—she connects everyone. She is probably the only person in the family who knows what everyone in the family is up to.
Zeenat: Sameer is a keen observer and his attention to detail is something that shows in everything he does. That is what makes all his travel stories so gripping! I love hearing them. I love his restlessness—I have never ever seen him doing ‘nothing’, he’s always up to something—and his ability to manage his time.

Two things they would change about each other:
 Sameer: She needs to stop under-estimating herself and her abilities. And she needs to come to work on time on Monday mornings.
Zeenat: If he could just stop biting his nails. There’s nothing left on those fingers! Also, his annoying Sunday work calls to me.

You can follow their work on the BombayDuckDesigns website. You can follow Sameer onInstagram, Twitter and Tumblr. You can also follow Zeenat on Instagram and Tumblr.