“Diamonds are a woman’s best friend”, is a much-heard cliché and it’s cliché because of a reason. It is important to note here that diamonds are not everyone’s cup of tea but people continue to derive pleasures from other forms of jewellery as well. India loves to celebrate its festivals and how do we celebrate? We shop! Shopping is synonymous to an Indian festival and no shopping is complete without buying some form of jewellery that does not burn a big hole in our pockets! These jewellery exhibitions satiate our need for that will to celebrate like nothing else.
Basirhat Jute Jewellery
Jute, also known as the ‘Golden Fibre’, has been used for weaving different products out of jute fabrics for over centuries now. Not only is it used for making textile, but also for creating products and accessories for decor and fashion purposes. Being sturdy, durable, eco-friendly and cheap, accessories fashioned out of jute are gaining good popularity. The products are entirely hand-made with no help from machines at all, using simple tools and techniques such as braiding the fibers and arranging them in various combinations and patterns to create coasters, bags, necklaces and so on. An additional bonus to this is that it can be worn with almost all types of clothing and ethnic wear.
Cane as a craft type is found across the northern, eastern, north-eastern and southern parts of the country. But it is predominantly found and practiced in north-east India, especially in Assam. The variety of cane used determines the quality of the product made. For example, a kind of muli bamboo locally known as ‘mulibazail’ is used for making umbrella handles. Two other varieties of bamboo locally known as ‘Mrithinga’ and ‘Bethua’ and different varieties of canes locally known as ‘sundi’, ‘barjali’, ‘harua’ and ‘golla’ are required for specific designs in making furniture and baskets.
Coconut Shell Jewellery
The coconut tree is well-known for its multi-utility nature with all of its components used for food, oil, timber, rope, fuel and handicrafts. Even the hard coconut shells are utilized, being carved into beautiful patterns and objects which can be used in everyday life such as bowls, boxes, wall clocks, toys, wind chimes and even accessories such as pendants or earrings. Not only is it decorative but also functional in all aspects.
Dokra is a type of metal craft practiced by a few indigenous tribes from West Bengal in India. Completely handmade, this type of jewellery centers on themes of nature and spiritual as well as religious worship. Motifs include flora, fauna, creepers and little figurines of local Gods. The necklaces and bracelets often include colorful beads and threads making them more visually appealing.
Paper is one of the more versatile materials on earth. As it is used from packing to printing to writing to even origami, the recent trend of jewellery out of paper shouldn’t be very surprising. The products marketed include colorful bracelets, broaches, earrings and necklaces. All that one need to make these are just paper, glue, colorful beads and stickers (optional), a lot of patience and a dash of creativity. One would be amazed at how professional and beautiful these pieces turn out to be when from just paper, just like the people in the NGO in Rajasthan were where this kind of jewellery was made.
Terracotta has been one of the earliest forms of creative self-expression used by human beings. The artifacts and handicrafts created have a pretty good market acceptance across all age groups, being specially made in Kolkata. The terracotta clay is molded by hand and various techniques such as pinching, coiling, slabbing and carving are used to form desired shapes out of the clay. Individual parts are also molded and fired separately, which are then strung together with small beads or colorful hangings to make earrings and necklaces.
Saharanpur, a city in Uttar Pradesh is well renowned for its work on wood carving and brass inlay work on wood. Having influences from Kashmiri designs, their open worked screens with vines and floral patterns threading through the entire screen is very famous. Each work is methodically carved, engraved and buffed to give another-wordly shine. Along with shelves, furniture and coasters, small toys such as trains and planes are also designed. Piggy banks ranging in different sizes are also made quite popular by them.