The paper beauties

The paper beauties

Eco-friendly world

The paper beauties
They are completely different individuals, but similar ideas and a common passion brought them together.

The passion was for creating quirky handmade paper jewellery. Bela Singh and Asmita Ghorpade started ‘Kashish Designz’, a City-based handcrafted jewellery startup in 2013.

The duo creates beautiful eco-friendly lightweight accessories, ranging from daily wear to something for a special occasion, all out of paper and glass beads. This venture also has an online presence and has tied up with a lot of lifestyle and fashion portals.

Bela says, “We have seen a lot of people creating beautiful pieces of art using paper. This kind of attracted us to churn out some of our designs. Asmita and I learnt most of the details watching videos online. Kashish, today, is a brand of extremely elegant handmade paper jewellery.” In the initial days, they used wedding cards to make the jewellery.

According to Bela, it took them almost six months to master the art of making paper jewellery and establish themselves to where they are today.

“We create accessories which accentuate one’s dress, add a dash of colour to their style and give a new meaning to their outfit. It started as craft work and hobby but slowly turned into a venture that has given so many opportunities and is now a source of livelihood for many rural women,” she says adding, “It was when we went to one of the popular e-commerce sites to show them our work that we were flooded with appreciation and compliments for it. That’s when we thought of corporatising this into something bigger. Currently, we have about 10 to 12 women working with us on a permanent basis.”

Though their forte is handmade paper and glass bead jewellery, however, Kashish is also into producing oxidised silver jewellery. They use recycled paper, craft paper, gift wraps and wedding cards to make some of the most elegant designs, which not only give the earrings and necklaces an unusual and fresh look but also serve the purpose of keeping the environment clean and green.

“We never replicate our designs and always make sure to work according to our customers’ demands to make something that will suit their need and personality. I believe travelling has given us the much-needed experience to continue creating some unique designs. Visiting different places has brought us closer to different cultures and lifestyles and that can be seen in our works,” says Bela. She adds, “Going out and exploring is the best thing to do. The exposure and appreciation from people is a huge encouragement. We have displayed our work at various flea markets and exhibitions in the City. People have always appreciated our styles and encouraged us to try new and more innovative techniques. It’s mostly people above 35 years of age, with ample knowledge and understanding about the art of handmade products, who come looking for our creations.” 

On the different challenges they face, Bela states, “It is a very competitive market. And with China coming in as the leader, many indigenous markets of raw materials are going down. This has somehow increased the prices of the local vendors. Another challenge that we face is convincing companies about our credibility when we visit them to sell our products or tie up with them. But in the end, our work speaks for us and it’s all worth the effort.”