Sustenance of Languishing Traditional Crafts Through Design and Processes Interventions: Leather Toy Craft
Editor: Amaresh Chakrabarti, Toshiharu Taura and Yukari Nagai
Author: Jha, S. K.
Institution: Department of Leather Goods and Accessories Design, FootwearDesign and Development Institute, Noida, India
Section: Brief Podium Papers
The Leather Toy Craft is spread in the geographical areas of Indore and Ujjain districts in Madhya Pradesh state in India. Once upon a time, this was a great source of income for thousands of skilled and semi-skilled artisans and their family members. But, the use of insect-edible raw-materials and lack of product-line diversification turned this craft into the category of languishing crafts. This craft is well known for its miniature as well as for lifesize animal and other realistic creature forms. The sculpted muscular forms, followed by traditional leather molding techniques are the common-unique-craft-factor. After and study of production-bottom-of-pyramid involved in manufacturing-process, the author came to know that this craft can achieve the state-of-sustenance. Objective of this project was to establish a pool between traditionally acquired craft skills, easy-to-accept contemporary manufacturing process interventions- as required, design and development of product ranges according to the standing-requirements of the target-end-user(s). One-to-one survey and sample collection through personal interactions and exploration method was followed at grass-root level. To develop a proposed non-insect-edible form, the production-cost enhancement was approximately 05 INR per square feet. Later, this project was extended to check the actualfeasibility of interventions at functional level, which was found successful. For this purpose, initial design inspirations had been taken from the surrounding environments of Indore city life, as well from the nature. As all of the above suggested processes were done after needstudies, so was artisan friendly and recommended changes were accepted by them easily. Although, initial training was required, so artisan training program was organized by author.