The ongoing Heritage Festival 2005 brings a plethora of handicrafts from different states
"YEH HAMARI parampara hai (this is our tradition)," explains Sudin Kumar Jain pointing to the Madhubani paintings that he brings from Bihar. "The art form is running in our families for 80 years. The themes are based on Ramayana and Mahabharata. Colours for the paintings are sourced from barks, leaves and flowers in the vicinity. For instance crimson is derived from genda and arvi flowers and the peepal bark for the brown. Coal gives the black," he explains.
Sudin is one of the craftsmen participating in the India Heritage Festival 2005, organised by office of the Development Commissioner (handicrafts), Ministry of Textiles in association with India Tourism Development Corporation.
The place wears a festive look with handicrafts sourced from various states adding a distinct tint to the whole affair.
Sitara Begum from Sangam Bihar, near New Delhi brings meena kari and metallic fashion jewellery earrings, anklets and necklaces plus Firozabadi glass bangles. "There is more to come shortly stone studded anklets and garnet jewellery," she says. And for shell jewellery earrings, bangles and necklaces, Andaman and Nicobar has some good buys in cowries and coloured shells. A plethora of conches with the typical haunting sea hum can also be bought here which are priced Rs. 200 onwards.
In the clothes segment Benarasi on chiffons for salwar kameez and saris, bandhni, kasuti, painted tussar, and the regional Pochampally fare are some of the options. Frocks for tiny tots from the Narsapur lace units are ideal for summers. Mojris from Patiala and Kolhapuri chappals are some cool buys.
For home furnishing bed sheets from Rajasthan (Rs. 100, Rs. 200) and patchwork cushion covers from Ahmedabad priced between Rs. 110 and Rs. 250 in yellow and crimson are interesting buys. "For the first wash, dry cleaning is recommended. Later you can opt for home wash," says Poonam on caring for the patchwork furnishing.
A lot of good earth finds its way into the expo, in the form of utility ware terracotta diyas and paperweights from Orissa and beer mugs and kullarh in glazed terracotta from West Bengal. A lot of cane furniture is up for grabs like chairs and low seaters.
Hookah from Kashmir make interesting buys priced, at Rs. 750 along with soapboxes and decoration stuff in papier-mache. Papier mache from Jaipur is intricate with glass mirrors bowls for pop corns, chips, namkeen and dry fruits, boxes for chapattis and jewellery boxes priced at Rs. 50 onwards. And finally with Moradabadi candle stands styled retro, in black metal and inspired by the Raj era, more so the posts, and paper lampshades with pressed cosmos and grasses from Auroville, the expo presents diverse options.
Photo: D. Gopalakrishnan
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