Deepak Kumar from Balaji Pearls, Hyderabad, flaunts the Rani Haar . “This is famous in our city. Only Rs. 4, 000,” he says. The neck piece, with pearls, rubies and emeralds strung together on a silver base, Rani Haar sits pretty at Cottonfab 2012, an exhibition of handcrafted and handloom products organised by Awadh Hathkargha, Hastshilp Evam Gramodyog Samiti. Deepak has a range of necklaces, ear rings and pendants in jade, coral and other semi-precious stones, apart from the intricately designed Minakari bangles and jhumkis.
Mohammad Yamin from New Delhi displays his share of black and white metal, German silver, brass, copper and oxidised jewellery — ornate brooches, anklets, rings, clips and neck pieces.
The rest of the 80-odd stalls at the exhibition teem with traditional handloom fabrics from all over the country — chikan kurtas from Lucknow, silk shawls with lovely Kashmiri embroidery, light-weight cotton silk saris from Kota, block-printed Maheshwaris from Gujarat, and phulkari kurtas and patialas from Punjab. You can also choose from patchwork saris that have come from Gorakhpur. There are Kalamkari and Mangalagiri saris and dress materials from Andhra Pradesh too.
The richness and diversity of India’s craftsmanship is apparent in the products on display.
There are elegant, minimalistic tussar, muga and mulberry silk saris from Assam in one stall, and ornate Benarasi saris with zari and resham work in another. The stall manager of Nilofar Benaras Saris claims that his stall has the best possible supernet saris and brocade silk bags zari .
From West Bengal, there are Batik-printed and Kantha-embroidered kurtas, dupattas and saris. A craftsman from Barasat sells tribal-art saris that mostly feature hand-painted stick figures dancing with joy. From Madhya Pradesh and Orissa, there are Bagh printed and Sambhalpuri ikkat fabrics, respectively. There are brightly-coloured clothes and bed spreads from Rajasthan. A vendor from Mount Abu even sells kurta-dhoti sets for children. You can also shop for Bagru and Sanganeri printed materials and bandhnis.
Apart from clothes and accessories, there are bone handicrafts and home decor items too. There are doormats made of Khadi from Sitapur and velvet handloom bags with patchwork from Haridwar.
Cottonfab 2012 will be on at Padmavathi Ammal Cultural Centre, Avanashi Road till August 6 from 10.30 a.m. to 8.30 p.m.