Krafts of India

The art of carving: Wood art in India.

posted by Kavesh Khanna August 10, 2016 0 comments

Wood carving in India has been around since ancient times, with ancient wood carved temples in Uttar Pradesh bearing witness to this. While Sheesham is the most widely used type of wood, mango,walnut, deodar, ebony and sandalwood are also used. Artistic & architectural woodwork began as a palace & temple craft and over time evolved to daily use artefacts. Let’s rediscover the beauty of intricately designed wooden artefacts made by immensely talented artisans through this collection of handpicked wooden products.

Our country is not only diverse but it is unique in all senses. You get to see some of the most intriguing exciting artworks made out of small and day to day things. Wood art is also one of those phenomenal crafts. There are some amazing artisans that turn a simple log of wood into extraordinary marvels.

How it all started

Wooden handicrafts from India are famous all over the world for their beauty and durability. Not only wooden furniture, the beautiful wood artifacts have a massive fan following across the globe.The range of products and decorative pieces made from wood is immense. From carved figurines, accessories and decorative pieces, the possibilities are endless. Woodwork started as a temple art and means to decorate palaces. Depending on local availability, different woods were used for wood carving and fashioned into religious, decorative and functional articles. Over time, various centres of wood carving emerged, each with its distinct style.

Presently, Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh is known for its intricate wood carvings. The origin of these crafts can be traced back to the late 19th century here.  It was influenced by Kashmiri designs due to association and migration of Kashmiri artisans. These Craftsmen were famous for their unique jaali and vine leaf patterns.

Apart from Saharanpur, Woodwork clusters are scattered all across the country, with each cluster having its own speciality produce and technique. Some of the most famous clusters are:-

Kashmir for Walnut wood product with intricate carvings.

The raw material used for the fine woodcarving of Kashmir is obtained from a walnut tree known as ‘Doon Kul’ that is cut only once it matures to an age of 300 years. What sets this wood apart from others is that it is extremely hard and durable and is available only in Kashmir. Several products such as toys, bowls, platters, jewellery boxes with intricate details are a speciality of this region. Decorative wood panels for ceilings, arches and doorways are a special craft of Kashmir and is called Khatamband.

Karnataka for Sandalwood carvings and products

Sandalwood is native to Karnataka and its abundance there has led to extensive usage and beautiful products coming out of it. Earlier used to create only deities, boxes have become a speciality of this region. The distinctive aroma of Sandalwood and large boxes covered with carvings of mythological scenes is what sets this apart from all other woodwork.


How it is made

Wood carving is done totally by hands, the wood which is majorly used is Sheesham. Though teak, rose wood and mango wood are also popular. These carvings are done by hands. However due to the massive demand, it is also carved on a massive scale using high-end machines. Wood carving, cutting, sanding and polishing. It definitely takes patience and precision. It is the epitome of hard work and success.

There are majorly 5 types of carvings done on wood:- Undercut (Khokerdar), Lattice work (Jalidhar), Semi Carving (Padri), Deep Carving (Vaboraveth), and Shallow Carving (Sadikaam).

wooden carving

Usages today

Wood has been a material with a lot of character and a lot of grace. It reflects your taste for class and wooden artefacts are used for various purposes. Wooden craft is classy elegant and timeless, some of the amazing wooden craft items used in your household can be very easily found but they can last you for years.

From home décor to utility goods. Wood brings endless possibilities with it. The utility factor of woodcraft is phenomenal it is easy to maintain and it is available easily.

From robust doors to delicate miniatures, wood can be converted into any shape of form. The most versatile material known to man. You can still find beautiful picture frames shelves and other utility products and add amazingness to your home


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