Papier-Mâché - The Ornamental Handicraft

January 05, 2017

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Golden tendrils, wisping vines, and blooming flora, these petite Kashmir papier-mâché pieces,
though cute and dainty are saturated in a rich and deep history.



The papier-mâché technique of using paper pulp for making decorative objects was first adopted in Kashmir
in the 15th century by King Zain-ul-Abidin, who was imprisoned in Samarkand (Central Asia).
Upon his return to the Kashmir Valley, he brought with him skilled craftsmen whom
specialized in such techniques. With this, the art born in the land of Persia
began to flourish and reach new heights in Kashmir.


The process for making papier-mâché is relatively simple but is time consuming and laborious.
The skilled artisans involved with this painstaking process are called sakhta makers.
There are two main steps in the process of creating papier-mâché items.
The first is the sakhtsazi (mould making), or the actual production of the item.
The second is the naqqashi (painting), when the item is
painted with any number of motifs. 


The materials involved with this process are discarded paper, cloth, straw of rice plant, copper sulfate,
which are mixed and made into a pulp. The pulp thus made is applied on molds made in wood or brass.
In earlier times, the mold was made of clay by the craftsman himself.


Naggashi, the painting step in this process, decorates the surface
of the papier-mâché item in intricate floral patterns or highly stylized
scenes of animals and battles.


As Spring approaches, De-cor showcases its new arrival of vintage handmade Kashmiri products. 

Not only are we in love with their practicality, but we are also enamored with their bright
color schemes and intricate painted patterns.


We have a wide variety of designs and styles available to choose from,
making these Kashmiri papier-mâché products the perfect decorative accent for any interior.

A Piece of Heritage

August 05, 2015

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Indian architecture has a long history in using hand-carved wood panels to adorn houses, royal palaces, temples, and public spaces. Wood carving is a profession passed down from generation to generation within a family.

The process consists of cutting the wood down to size with hand saws, then drawing the design with chalk. There are different stages of carving: master craftsman begin with rough carving, then smooth chiseling, and sandpapering to finish. Often, the finalized carved panels are stained or painted in either monochromatic or multi-colored finish.

Popular themes and motif in the carvings are of: vines, flowers, mythical characters, animals, and gods.

 

 

Traditionally, these carved panels were used as archways, door lintels, and wall moulding.

 

Creative interior designers have found innovative ways to incorporate these beautiful panels into modern living spaces, using them as: kitchen hoods, fireplace mantels, shelves, wall decor, doorway lintels, decorative elements on furniture, and room moulding.

 

     

Left: a decorative element for a fireplace

Right: a kitchen hood

 

Here, a floral and vine motif panel is used as moulding in a modern kitchen to add a bit of Indian heritage and ethnic vibe.

 

 These intricate wood carvings are used to frame a fireplace.

 

A beautiful geometric motif panel is incorporated into this daybed as a decorative element.

 

A chakra motif wood carving becomes a console table.

 

This antique multi-colored patina finish wood carving is used as an end panel for a bed.

 

De-cor has a wonderful collection of antique and reproduction hand-carved wood panels, check out our selections.

Be inspired, as we have been, and welcome a piece of Indian heritage into your home.


In Love with Blue (making the Indigo Batik Throw)

April 27, 2015

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India is known to be one of the earliest major center for
cultivation and application of the indigo plant.
  
  
   
 
Indigo is extracted from the leaves of the indigo tinctoria plant through
a long fermentation process and turned into pigment powder.
 
 
 
Batik printing is a printing process that utilizes wax to resist color dye on specific
areas of the fabric to reveal beautiful, intricate pattern.
 
 
After the wax resist is applied, the fabric is then dyed with
natural plant based pigment.
For Spring, De-cor features its new arrival of originally designed Indigo Batik Throws.
We are truly in love with these striking natural indigo dyed Batik prints
on 100% cotton handwoven throws.
Representing dignity & tranquility, indigo is historical a prized color
and still holds its popularity even today.
 
 
       
 
With a special variety of floral and tribal prints in selection...
 

These Indigo Batik Throws are a perfect way to add a pop of rich blue to your bedroom or living room.

 

Shop now to take advantage of our time sensitive offer of free shipping on this item.
Use promo code BATIK at checkout.