Baubles, bowls and beauty masks — By Hand, From The Heart makers’ market promises all this, and some more  

Here’s our pick of labels that are not only making their By Hand debut but are coming to the city for the first time.  

Rebecca Vargese Published :  07th February 2020 06:00 AM   |   Published :   |  07th February 2020 06:00 AM

By Hand

It has been 29 editions since By Hand, From the Heart was launched in Chennai, and city-based entrepreneurs Deepa Sekar and Kshiti Davey are as enthusiastic about introducing the city to new homegrown labels as when they first began. Promising as the name of the pop-up is suggesting, all things handmade, this two-day showcase will see 42 makers in participation. “We have 13 newcomers and quite by chance a lot of the brands that are showcasing different kinds of home decor.”

Here’s our pick of labels that are not only making their By Hand debut but are coming to the city for the first time.

Stick with it

There has been a rally for experimental jewellery across the globe, for the last couple of years. First, we had trinkets made from industrial pipes, then there was jewellery made out of concrete, and now bamboo is having its moment in the sun. However, when Nikhil Kunnath started dabbling with the reed, it was for his graduation project at IIT Bombay. “My love for bamboo began with that project when we designed a bamboo bike for kids. The idea for my brand was born later on, when I decided to make these models practical, and available for everyday use,” says the Thrissur native. Specialising in creating bamboo utilities and accents, the brand Kol (which means a ‘stick’ in Malayalam) offers jewellery, interior decor like lamps and lifestyle accessories including hangers. Rs 2,000 upwards.

Carve a niche

Collecting souvenirs as part of a vacation is a ritual that most of us have indulged in at some point in our life. Ananthan Pillai’s journey with his brand, Master’s Loft, began on a similar note. “Collecting art and artefacts has always a part of my travels. And what I loved about buying keepsakes was that I would get a chance to interact with the makers and learn about their processes.” Through his journeys, the Chennai-based entrepreneur learned that most of these products — including ‘traditional’ designs — were made in China. Deciding to rectify the system, the 42-year-old set out to find master artisans and sculptors within Tamil Nadu. Set to showcase sculptures and figurines inspired by ancient temple murals and architecture — like the yali, livestock as portrayed in Indus Valley civilisation — the range of handmade artefacts will feature materials like wood, bronze and a special mix of minerals. Rs 2,500 onwards.

Beauty spot

An artisanal apothecary brand is how founders Kasturi Sen and Vidhi Dave describe their Mumbai-based skincare label Oleum Cottage. Launched in October 2017, the base for most of the brand’s products are made from freshly hand-blended, cold-pressed vegetable oils, therapeutic essential oils and unrefined butter. “We believe in the healing power of oils and love experimenting with the way raw plant ingredients were used in traditional skincare routines. ” Currently, working on a completely plant-based hair cleanser, the collection (that come in bottles with typewritten medicine labels and copper accents) will include face kits, body, lip and foot care, and men’s grooming products.  Rs 2,100 onwards. 

At Hanu Reddy Residency. On February 7 and 8.