Shop By Craft
Explore a wide range of authentic, unique craft from across the country
The India Craft House seeks to create a larger canvas than what exists today in the digital space, for all the beautiful and unparalleled creativity that the simple artisans of India have been quietly perfecting for centuries, while ensuring a fair price for every single artisan whose creations have been featured on this portal.
Featured here are a medley of some distinctive pieces and artifacts that may not belong to a specific craft form included in the listings on this page, but yet warrant a representation in a mixed, generic category.
Beads have been an important element of trade in the ancient world, as archaeological excavations have shown in the Indus Valley civilization dating back over 4000 years ago as well as in the Egyptian and Mesopotamian civilizations of the times. Traditionally, beads had their own significance being indicative of social strata as also to cater to existent belief systems. The craft in India has evolved over centuries and bead making is extensively practiced across the country to make semi-precious or other bohemian jewelry but also in items of utility and décor.
Block printing is a process of hand printing on fabric practiced over millennia in India. The history of the craft dates back to the Indus Valley civilization between 3500 to 1300 BC while traces of Indian block prints have also been found in excavation sites of Egypt. The use of vegetable dyes, hand-carved blocks and the precision of execution are what render the various techniques unique and much sought-after across the world. While Rajasthan and Gujrat are the major hubs for block printing in India, there exists a plethora of block printing styles across the country be it Ajrakh, Bagh, Bagru or Dabu, Kalamkari…each with their own exclusive design and crafting process.
Ceramic & Pottery
Pottery as a craft form is easily perhaps among the most timeless living craft traditions of India, practiced in the remotest corners across the entire expanse of the country. Pottery belongs to a Mesolithic ceramic tradition that developed among Vindhya hunter-gatherers during the Mesolithic period, while there are also debates saying that it belonged to the Neolithic period. Whether it be exquisite blue pottery from Rajasthan or rustic terracotta from Haryana or sturdy black stone from Manipur, the myriad forms remain unique with their individual beauty, each influenced by the evolving historical influences of the times. Pottery and ceramic which were items of utility for generations are important sources of livelihood for scores of artisans across the country.
India is a land known for its exquisite, fine weaves be it glorious brocade weaves, exquisite cottons, stunning Ikats and so much more! Historical evidence records that farmers of the Indus valley were the first to spin and weave cotton yarn into cloth. Archaeologists have recovered fragments of textiles at Mohenjo-Daro, in what is now Pakistan, dating to between 3250 and 2750 BC. Every corner of the country has a unique play of weft and warp to offer in terms of weaves. The diversity in fabric in weaving is diverse ranging from the softest of cotton to the smoothest of silk. The master artisans of the country bring out the best in textile in their traditional looms.
The existence of glass crafting in India has been traced back to the Harappan civilisation around 1700 BC and more conclusively from the ruins of Taxila (3rd century BC), where bangles, beads, small vessels, and tiles were discovered in large quantities. It is believed these glassmaking techniques may have been transmitted from cultures in Western Asia. By the 1st century AD, glass was being used for ornaments and casing. Contact with the Greco-Roman world added newer techniques, and Indians artisans mastered several techniques of glass moulding, decorating and colouring by the succeeding centuries. Further, the craft was given an impetus and came into the foreground during the Mughal era, given their fascination for beautiful glass objects.
Grass & Nature Craft
As the world actively moves towards sustainability and preferring eco-friendly choices, grass and nature craft takes center stage to form an integral part of the sustainable products mix. Grass weaving and crafting utility items from natural sources is as old as pottery in India and finds an interesting place in Indian culture through the centuries. Hand made by artisans from the rural hinterlands or from forest-fringe communities with locally sourced materials in the remotest corners of India, these crafts are an epitome of simplicity and beauty.
Herbs & Consumables
Featured here is a range of completely sustainable, natural consumables in their purest form varying from Himalayan tea & spices to candles, incense and cosmetics from different parts of the country – all handpicked, hand pounded and blended or crafted by experienced and skilled hands guided by sound local knowledge and expertise.
Jewelry crafting has been an integral part of civilizations across the world through millennia evolving through time. The Indian subcontinent has a long jewellery history with evidence going back to the Indus Valley Civilisation and even prior as ancient texts recording the existence of the practice have indicated. The craft has been gradually changing over time with cultural and other influences from clay and beads to metal and precious stones, with every part of the country evolving its own distinctive styles and preferences.
Painted in myriad hues, embroidered, embossed, carved and crafted into bags, accessories and home décor - leather craft in India offers myriad options of beautifully handcrafted products. In India, the use of leather seems to have marked its prominence since the Indus valley civilization, evolving over time with various historical influences down the centuries … right from the painted leather lamps of Andhra to cutwork leather from Kutch or embossed leather from Bengal and more…
Marble & Stone Craft
The stone-carving tradition in India is one of the richest in the world, as is evident from the amazing ancient stone temples dotting almost every part of the Indian landscape, with every region distinguishing itself with its own distinctive form of crafting in stone. Marble crafting and inlay work is believed to have been introduced into the country in the 17th century by Persian artisans brought in by the Mughals. The crafts have also manifested into a beautiful array of objets d’art. The types of stone vary from marble, soapstone to sandstone, black stone and the likes.
Metal craft in India dates back to the Indus Valley Civilization. The discovery of the Dancing Girl was proof that people of the sub-continent region were masters at moulding metal for millennia. The craft evolved over time with varying examples of expert craftsmanship ranging from the bronze sculptures belonging to the Chola rulers or the iron pillar at Mehrauli, in Delhi, made during Ashoka’s reign and so on. Today, one sees myriad metal crafting techniques in existence using brass, copper and iron predominantly practiced by the indigenous communities of the states of Bengal, Chattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Karnataka and Rajasthan.
Needlework and Embroidery
India has a rich heritage of diverse embroidery styles which changes with the topography. Embroidery initially was a part of the lifestyle of home-bound women as a socializing outlet. The Indian subcontinent as well as Central and East Asian countries were known for their intricate needlework. The craft is said to have flourished and come into prominence during the Mughal era in India. Today Indian embroidery is much sought after, given its exquisite intricacy and sheer beauty, whichever part of the country it comes from – Kashmir, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Orissa and so forth.
Paintings & Art
The origin of Indian art can be traced to prehistoric settlements in the 3rd millennium BC. Paintings are fragments of history and India has a rich heritage and legacy of paintings. Early evidence of Paintings in India date back to murals from the 2nd century BC, while art as a stylised form of depiction is believed to have existed much prior to this. Initially depicting religious beliefs and values as in Patachittra art for instance, Indian paintings have now evolved to become a synthesis of diverse traditions and cultures. Every art form has its own story to tell and is a representation and reflection of the society of the region, like Miniature paintings depict the grandeur of royalty while other indigenous art forms like Madhubani, Warli and Gond or Kalighat tell stories of everyday life of the community.
Carpet and rug weaving may have been introduced into India as far back as the eleventh century, but certainly during the reign of the Mughal Emperor, Akbar in the early sixteenth century, who brought Persian craftsmen to India. Under the patronage of the Mughals, Indian craftsmen adopted Persian techniques and designs and the style gradually blended with Indian art, leading to an indigenous outcome and the industry began to diversify and spread all over the subcontinent, more so in the northern region as also in some parts of the south. The industry today offers an incredibly wide range of rugs made of different raw material deploying varying weaving techniques.
Stationery & Paper Craft
This is a lovely collection of handcrafted journals, diaries, notebooks crafted using mostly handmade paper and with covers ranging from hand block printed, handwoven or embroidered fabric to leather, hardboard and so on. Also featured is a range of entirely handmade paper in varying designs.
Tie & Dye / Resist Dyeing
A unique process of dyeing fabrics which started some 5000 years ago with evidence from the Indus Valley Civilisation, Tie & Dye is a popular craft both among connoisseurs as well as the masses. As the name suggests, the Tie & Dye technique is essentially a resist dyeing craft that entails tying up sections of the fabric and then dyeing it to reveal shades and patterns of the colour as the fabric is opened out. There are varying processes of tie & dye art practices in the western and eastern parts of India popularly known as Bandhini or Bandhej, Leheriya, Batik and more.
Throughout the great Indian peninsula, woodcarving of the most intricate kind has been practiced in this country, going back to pre–Mauryan times. The early wood-carved temples are standing testimony to the craft, mostly decorated with doors, ceilings and various fittings carved in teak and other woods with patterns of extreme richness and minute elaboration. Every region of India has its own beautiful interpretation of the craft, whether it be the wooden dolls of Bengal, Tarakashi or Jaali wood craft from Uttar Pradesh, Kavad Craft from Rajasthan and so forth … every wooden craft form has a history and significance of its own.
Wool Weaving & Embroidery
The colder regions of the country have a history of wool weaving that goes back millennia. Whether it be Himachal Pradesh where it is said that weaving has been practiced for at least 5,000 years or Kashmir where it’s origins can be traced back to the 2nd century BC. Woollen blankets and shawls were woven and exported to the Roman Empire, but the Kashmir industry became famous after Zain-ul'Abidin (1420-1470 A.D.) brought in Persian weavers to perpetuate the craft. Beautiful Bhujodi wool weaving from Gujarat on the other hand is said to go back 500 years.