Paper Wrapped Bead Workshop
I took a two hour train ride from Haridwar to Saharanpur. My first train ride!
I arrive and my wonderful contact, Lima, picked me up from the train station and took me to the workshop location where I had chi and coffee and discussed the workshop. Saharanpur is known for their wood and paper production, nestled on the north western corner of India. So Lima’s wife and I took a rickshaw into the market to look for paper. I was thrilled to find some incredibly beautiful paper there as well as the other supplies needed for the workshop.
The markets here in India are laid out with all the paper sellers in one section, then all the fabric sellers together and so on. It is quite interesting!
The two day intensive workshop went very well. There were about 8 women in the workshop and we worked from 10:00am to 4:00pm with chi breaks and a lunch break each day. The beautiful paper I was so excited to use ended up being quite difficult to work with. Luckily the women were very patient and by experimenting with a few different glues we were able to make them work.
This Women’s Cooperative has been working together for several years creating intricate hand painted cards and bags using natural dies. The designs celebrate their cultural heritage and the fair wages paid empower them to improve their quality of life in their family and in their community. In addition to the women earning an income, funds are set aside for community development projects. I am grateful to be working with them and adding to their product line which creates opportunities for more economic growth.
The workshop went really well. The beautiful bright colors of India radiate from every bead!
I am very excited about these new handmade, recycled, fair trade, global beads. It has been a great experience. I am excited to share these beautiful beads with you soon. Stay tuned for the new line of jewelry to be debuted in the Fall of 2012 at Plum Bottom Pottery.