Kohar Jewellery is helping new-age millennials connect with the idea of heritage design
When it comes to high jewellery, millenials love exploring distinct homegrown design languages. Mumbai-based jewellery label Kohar Jewellery is melding contemporary aesthetics with traditional desi karigari and their range offers some seriously nuanced and dramatic jadau, nakkashi, polki, meenakari work and more.
“Thanks to my background as a painter I have always had a decent sense of aesthetics. When we moved to Mumbai, I gave a name to this little hobby of mine, my husband suggested the name KOHAR (it means jewellery in Armenian). With encouragement from friends and family, Kohar took wings and I soon moved from a home studio to the loft of a tailoring unit with 2-3 karigars. We moved to an independent studio in a year and have now finally opened our own flagship store in Bandra,” says Kanika Bhatnagar, the mind behind the label.
The label's newest line-up features some stunning pastel meenakari work and exquisite natural stones. From Sonakhshi Sinha to Kriti Sanon, every B-Town icon is a Kohar Jewellery fan girl, and we just explored the brand further:
Tell us about your newest collection/ lineup
Kohar pieces have always had a distinctive look because of the colours that we use. The new collection is an ode to aesthetically cut natural stones combined with a dewy palette of pastel meenakari colors. It’s a fresh take on the Jadau jewellery technique which resonates beautifully with the brides of today. Also, we are consciously trying to move away from all syndicated stones being imported from China and using more and more of natural stones, sourced from various mines across the country.
How do millennials feel about kundan and jadau jewelry? Have you noticed a buying pattern among your young customers?
Millennials are far more mindful of where, how and why they spend, they are a “outside-in” kind of generation. They would rather flaunt their pieces instead of stashing them away in lockers for the generations to come. Their investments are the memories that they create through their travels and experiences, which are more precious to them than the gold lying in their lockers.
Of course, family heirlooms have an emotional attachment, but we get a lot of clients, who wish to repurpose and transform their mom's old gold pieces into a contemporary form. So, there definitely is a shift from precious Kundan Jadau jewellery towards a more versatile, iconic yet practical jewellery.
Why do you think Kohar Jewellery is so popular with Bollywood stars ?
I have always strived to create signature pieces that go well with all kinds of ensembles, that add a characteristic quirk to the person wearing them, Bollywood stars are no different in that sense, hence the love!
What are some of your bestsellers ?
We have over 4500 different designs stocked at our store, but what sells the most are our hand-crafted range of pieces with the signature tiered beads detailing! Customers are usually spoilt for choice when they experience this particular section of our store.
Tell us a little about your clientele. How diverse is it?
We have clients from all over the world and across all kinds of professions. One thing in common across my clientele is their keen sense of aesthetic and their longing for distinctive pieces, which are not usually available in the market. They are not driven by trends but looking at each piece as a form of self expression.
You can shop pieces from Kohar jewellery's newest collection at Stockroom, Kolkata. Price on Request