Srinagar, Apr 3: To boost the demand of the walnut products, artisans in Kashmir crafted a variety of innovative walnut craft pieces.
Kashmiris traditionally have a natural flair for the arts, and Kashmir's handicrafts have made their impact on the national as well as international markets.
Traditional items made of walnut, a dark brown wood - copper samovar, teapot and house boats are famous for their excellent craftsmanship in the region.
To increase its demand and popularity, the artisans who are engaged with walnut wood carving, are changing the traditional items in size and design. The new products are available in various sizes, innovative designs and look more attractive and decorative.
"We thought of making new and innovative things. We use wood as a base material instead of copper both in making small and big sizes like gift items, which can be famous all over the world. This art requires a lot of craftsmanship skills and efforts. It takes three to four years in learning, after that we start working. The wood that is used is not an ordinary one, but a special one," said Shafeeq Ahmad, a walnut business dealer.
One of the artisans said that to create a piece from walnut required highly skilled expertise and time.
"It took almost one year in making. I do not use any mechanical device in making. It is purely a hand work. It is a real wood craving work," said Bilal Ahmad, an artisan.
The walnut wood has a unique colour, grain and sheen and the carving and fretwork done on it is of the finest quality.
Walnut is the most common wood used for carving and Kashmir is one of the few places where walnut trees thrive.