Visiting the Indian Handicrafts and Gifts Fair
The Indian Handicrafts and Gifts Fair is one of the most diverse and interesting home décor trade shows anywhere in the world. It is true that the Canton Fair in Guangzhou, China is much larger and there are indeed more exhibitors but there are many similar products being sold, as well as many non-décor related items. In my opinion, many of the manufactured Chinese items lack the soul that the Indian items contain. Indonesia and Singapore also have good shows but they lack the depth of variety that can be found at this particular show. If I could pick one show as the most interesting it would be here.
I believe that the diversity of culture found on the Indian subcontinent and the artistic and flamboyant nature of the people contribute to the great variety of products produced there. In the show you can find almost anything home décor related. You can find brass, aluminum and glass products from Moradabad, iron accessories from Jhodpur, wood furniture from Jaipur and Jhodpur, carved mango wood accessories from Saharanpur, embroidered cushions from Kashmir and hand knotted rugs from Panipat… You get the picture, the list goes on and on!
The show is held in a venue about two hours outside of Delhi and the journey is always a tedious one as traffic is often very bad. Despite being only 60km away, depending on conditions, it can take up to three hours to get there. Even with these challenges, the show is always worth the travel and you can usually spend a full three to four days walking the show, meeting with exhibitors and still wish for more time!
Every year, I enjoy seeing all of the new products and exhibits and even though we’ve been attending the show for the past 20 years, I still find many new things and love going! This past October while walking around, I found a new supplier who specializes in traditional Indian iron accessories. The owner used to work for the largest exporter of iron accessories in India before starting his own company about 10 years ago. He sells everything from candle lanterns and candle holders to hooks and boxes, trays and lamps and much, much more. The most exciting part though is that he exports his products all over the world, so I can’t wait to introduce some of his products into our stores in the spring!