Living in an Indian household, I'm pretty sure you would have come across at least one cane chair that's just lying around in your house. Have you ever wondered where they've come from and why were they so common in earlier times?
India is well-known for its sustainable materials, skilled artisans, and rich culture. These green artisans are the ones who are keeping the traditions of their ancestors alive while also ensuring that their crafts have a positive impact on the environment. All the materials that they use are sustainably sourced. There's a wide variety of materials like bamboo, rattan, moonj, banana fibre, and many more based on the region and terrain of india. The handicraft styles also vary depending on these factors.
Now all these artisans have been making all their crafts for ages and the monotony of their designs has slowly started killing the industry. This is mainly happening because the current public cannot relate to it and they've become out of context. So to eliminate this silly reason to stop the beautiful craftwork, ventures like Bamboopecker, Kadam Haat, Uravu have taken it upon themselves to work along with different clusters panning across India to help them stay in business by providing them with the necessary training and infrastructure. By doing so, they are not only helping to preserve the environment but also ensuring that the traditions of these artisans are passed down to newer generations.
To understand the craft and material better, the team of Bamboopecker has travelled extensively throughout India and broadened their knowledge about the sustainable materials that are out there mainly to design products that can exist in this modern world. They mainly have a collaboration with 7 clusters from different parts of india. There's 1 in kerala, where there are 3 families who have come together and they make very cool masks and keychains out of the waste pieces of bamboo that are leftover. Benny and Kavita are the main artists and they have taught the others as well.
Sangeeta, another green artist from Manipur makes beautiful lampshades and baskets from this material called ‘Kouna’ which is a type of cattail grass. It’s such a diverse material that there's plenty of ways to make new designs and curate new weaving patterns. A cute little basket made by sangeeta could be the right lunch bag for your daily needs and this way you would be helping India getting green as well!
There is such a huge emphasis on switching to sustainable materials like bamboo because bamboo grows back really quickly and it requires very less water. It's 100% biodegradable and doesn't require any kind of pesticides or chemicals to be preserved. So all this makes it very safe for humans to use and one of the best options out there for our better health. Just by switching to a bamboo toothbrush, we humans can avoid health issues like asthma and reproductive issues that are caused by phthalates that are present in plastic brushes. The bamboo bristles are also completely natural so you can throw out the whole toothbrush in your compost bin. Be sure to check out the dental kit from Bamboopecker!
Now it is up to us to support such brands and promote their green and sustainable values by using their products and saying goodbye to the plastic world. The government has come up with great schemes like ‘Make in India’ and ‘Vocal for Local’ and brands like Bamboopecker are the prime examples of it who are making sure that the artisans of Green India are being recognised and not going unnoticed.