Kumudini, a vital name in the revival of the handicrafts industry of Bangladesh has been in o"> Kumudini, a vital name in the revival of the handicrafts industry of Bangladesh has been in o"> Kumudini, a vital name in the revival of the handicrafts industry of Bangladesh has been in o">

Times of Dhaka

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Kumudini-connoisseurs of the country's traditional crafts
Online Desk |:| Thu, 07 Apr'2016, 11:26 PM |:| Online Version
Kumudini-connoisseurs of the country's traditional crafts
Kumudini, a vital name in the revival of the handicrafts industry of Bangladesh has been in operations since the '80s. The institution, having more than a decade's contribution in manual skills, offers tremendous scope of economic liberation to the rural women of our country.

Majority of the products available at Kumudini Handicrafts store within the capital are manufactured solely by hand, in its mega-structured factory, located in Narayanganj, Dhaka. Around 25000 female workers get a daily living from the factory work. The final produce is not only growing in popularity in leaps and bounds within the country but seems to be all-the-rage abroad, in countries like Japan and the U.K.

Kumudini Handicrafts outlets have many items in-store for their clients; the most exclusive bits and pieces being Jamdani saris and Nakshi-kantha items. 

Taposh Datta, the Stock Incharge, of the Gulshan branch, had many things to say about the special products. “At Kumudini, we only encourage producing the original Jamdani saris and do not endorse any sort of fusion material. Our understanding is that Jamdani saris are a beauty on their own and do not need help from any other medium to enhance its beauty.” 

Further into the conversation with Datta, we came to learn that Kumudini has its own set of valued designers and every single piece of Jamdani produced by the institution is based on these particular designers'selection.

“Our designs are unique and not available anywhere else; even if you can somehow manage a copy, be informed that it's illegal and the original design is Kumudini's sole property” he added.

The prices of the Jamdanis range from Tk 6000 to 60000. When asked what causes such a big distribution in value, Datta informed that it usually depended on the thread counts and the level of complicacies in design. 

The store clerks were more than eager to show the Nakshi-kantha selection at the outlet, promising it would amaze any customer. The ladies were right; the Nakshi-kantha products were extremely detailed. The intricate kantha stitch was available on bedcovers, quilts, cushion covers, wall hangers and what not! An average bedcover cost around Tk 12000. Upon query behind the reason for high pricing; Datta, justified it by saying that the materials were completely hand woven and took days to be completed. The final items were luxuriant and definitely meant to be a collectible piece.

Kumudini outlets have a separate section for natural-dye products. There are beautiful saris, fatuwas, panjabis even bed covers in the natural range.

The women's section had everything from leather handbags to designer purses. Anybody looking for readymade saris for their little girl could directly come to this section and find an array to choose from. They could even match glass bangles with the saris. The ladies range also included muslin saris; block printed saris, Tangail saris, silk saris, blouse, petticoats and almost everything that comes to mind.

The men's section looked wonderfully stocked with white panjabis – most popular with men and colourful cotton panjabis. The exclusive items in this section were the kantha- stitched kotis in different colours and leather sandals.

The household goods section had many exclusive items especially Jamdani print ceramics and bone china crockery exclusively designed by Kumudini. The cutleries are sold as single pieces and customers can make assortments as they desire.

Another particular corner that met the eye was the one where original -oil, acrylic and water colour paintings by local artists were displayed. Books by renowned Bangladeshi writers on topics that highlight the country were put on display and meant for sale.

Kumudini Handicrafts is a treasure trove for all people who love Bangladesh and are fond of 'deshi'products. The quality of the goods is fine and a testament to the skilled craftsmanship of the artisans.  The finesse of the designs tells a story that makes each of the products priceless.

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