Celebrating Indian Artistry
We thrive on discovering the best artisans from India and creating collections that blend their expertise and heritage with contemporary style and our design vision resulting in unique home decor full of zest for life. Currently partnering with more than 3500 artisans all over India, our mission is to empower them through long-term business partnerships, shine a spotlight on heritage craft, and drive social impact.
Maqbool Jan is a master artisan from Alamgari Bazar in Srinagar. Drawing inspiration from antique sozni pieces created by his father ,Maqbool has brought many innovations into his craft. His fine skill and creativity has won him many awards including the prestigious UNESCO Seal of Excellence. Maqbool works with his brother Firdous Jan and their whole family pools in when required to fulfil orders.
Brought to Kashmir from Persia in 14th century, Papier mache found a home with Indian artisans. These artisans took advantage of the forms’ eclectic nature to infuse vibrant colours and delicate floral motifs into this art. Sakhtsazi and Naqashi are two processes in Papier mache. Sakhtsazi is the process of moulding paper pulp into the desired form. Naqashi is the process of taking this raw form called kalib, and painting it with natural colors. What follows is individually created unique pieces and each one tells its own special story.
Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh
Mehtab is a carving artisan who has been working with Mela product ranges since the very beginning. He began his training when he was twelve from his Ustad (teacher) Qurban.
With over thirty years of fine carving expertise, he is today a master artisan and has trained more than twenty people.
He has been with Shahid Handicrafts for past 25 years and two of his sons also now work with him.
A chisel in one hand and a mallet in another, the artisans of Saharanpur’s lakkad bazaar carve magic into ordinary pieces of wood. This city is home to many families who originally came from Kashmir about four centuries ago and brought with them the craft of wood carving. Passed down through generations, the patterns are an amalgamation of diverse cultural influences, like the jaali which takes inspiration from the lattices of Indo-Islamic architectural patterns.
Sambhal, Uttar Pradesh
Mohammad Sarfaraz is one of the finest inlay artisans from Sambhal, he has been immersed in this craft for last thirty years. He learnt the skills from his father Mohammad Umer who worked with inlay technique for sixty years. Sarafaraz has a keen understanding of both design and business and is a successful artisan entrepreneur today.
Inlay craft in India traces its origin to Rajasthan when royal families commissioned artisans to create exquisite items. Artisans immerse themselves in the meticulous process of this craft, beginning with ethical sourcing of materials which are then finely cut, shaped, polished, and inlaid on wood to create breathtakingly detailed products. Embedded in floral and geometric patterns , the designs exude ethereality through the soft white contrast inherent to the material.
Yasin Shahabuddin is an ajrak master artisan from Pipar in Rajasthan. Their family textile dyeing and printing unit handed down for generations, uses natural vegetable dyes and wooden hand blocks for printing. As third generation block printers, Yasin’s family has been in the craft resist printing for over 200 years. He deftly combines the art of hand printing with kantha embroidery to elevate the look of our new home linen collection.
India is home to diverse artistic traditions in hand embroidery techniques and each region has a distinctive style. Some of the better known ones are Crewel work, originating in Kashmir. This is beautiful, traditional form of embroidery that uses wool to create sophisticated slightly raised patterns on linen twill fabric. Sujini, another such art form from rural Bihar where embroideries translate into storytelling.
In Gujarat, Kutch embroidery is practised by women of the tribal community, using simple stitches in a vibrant palette they add enchantment to the fabrics.
Vinod Bhati is a highly skilled mehendi artisan from Jodhpur, for the last twenty five years he has been working as a mehendi painter. Painting was always his passion so he chose to do the traditional mehendi work and has since trained fifteen people who help him in his work. He loves to innovate with colors and patterns and has finely embellished our new Mehendi collections.
Originally a body art form prevalent in South Asia, artisans in Jodhpur have adapted Mehendi into a fascinating art form creating flowing ornate designs on wood. Mandalas are one of the signature motifs used in Mehendi designs, creating these beautiful circular patterns calls for artisans’ undivided attention and precision and the outcome is vibrant, colourful decor products that add playfulness and charm to any space.