By Saroj Yadav (Founder, Kreeya)
I grew up in a small village in rural India. I learned the value of hard work from my parents who toiled hard all day in the fields. I will forever be grateful for the values of hard work and perseverance my parents instilled in me which pushed me to be an engineer and an entrepreneur.

When I moved to San Francisco, I wanted to shop for clothes by independent designers in the city. But there was no convenient way to do this. That was the beginning of my startup, Kreeya.

I reached out to many designers in San Francisco so that I could learn about their business. After talking to the handful of designers that responded, I was hooked. I decided to take a shot at promoting independent designers in San Francisco.

After a couple of iterations on the idea, I developed the first version of Kreeya. Pleased with the feedback from the designers, we launched a trial version just in time for the holidays. I was thrilled with the sales we made. It helped validate my original idea that women were interested in shopping for clothes by local, independent designers!

We wanted to have more designers on our platform, and we had to learn how to organize a photo shoot. We needed a beautifully designed site to showcase the collections of our designers. The months leading up to launch were fun and intense. In April 2011, Kreeya launched with a dozen independent designers from San Francisco and a couple of guest designers from Los Angeles and Barcelona. We hope to connect them with women who want to make a statement through independent and unique fashion.

Of course none of this would be possible without my team (pictured above): Caroline, our fashionable graphics designer, and Rachel, our fabulous creative writer. Our complementary skills, and their fun personalities mean that we have loads of laughs working together.

And the journey continues.

About the guest blogger: Saroj Yadav is the founder of Kreeya, a curated online shopping destination to promote independent fashion designers. Before starting Kreeya, she worked as a software engineer for several companies and was a founding member & CTO of Supercool School. Saroj holds a Masters degree in Computer Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Follow her on Twitter at @sarojyadav. You can like Kreeya on Facebook and follow on Twitter at @mykreeya.