My love for design extends to every possible corner and thing. Ever since Anand Prakash started creating fabulous paper and metal handcrafted products I have been gifting them because they are different and fit most occasions.
It’s these occasions in life which became Anand’’s fun and actual proof that his designs make good business sense. This economics graduate took a risk of setting up a creative outfit of exclusive handcrafted gifts, souvenirs and stationery in New Delhi some 14 years ago when most people only spent money on designer clothes. Patiently honing his skill set for ten years, twelve hours each day with diligence and passion eventually won him numerous awards e.g. the runners up at the finals of the “Indian Young Design Entrepreneur Award – 2008” by the British Council. He also got the opportunity to showcase in trend shows like Paperworld Frankfurt and National Stationery Show in New York.
His papeterie and metallique relate each created product to valuable or nearly extinct art and craft processes e.g. Indigo range of journals come with a booklet that talks about the history, availability and manufacturing process of the Indigo dye, the product line Scriptum which has several office table items moulded in Devnagri script or the old Indian maps, vintage stamps and postcards on coasters and trays. These old maps were bought off an IFS officer’s wife, who was getting transferred and couldn’t cart a trunk full of these rolls and many other collectibles which she had fervently amassed due to her husband’s transfers around the globe.
Such stories, authentic ideas backed with excellent execution appeal to a certain segment of society which doesn’t haggle about a price tag. These facts, a persistent attitude and creative sensibilities have always banked on the Indian artisan for a truly appreciative ‘Made in India’ label. 90% of their products are handmade from recycled materials making them more desirable as they’re eco-friendly and sustainable; being the sought-after keywords of luxury retail in this era.
But it’s the Anand Prakash stand alone store at the Chatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai, which took their fan following to another level. Once when a Fox Star Studio director was travelling through the city she was impressed with the bookmarks and commissioned them for the tiger bookmarks to be given away to all ‘Life of Pi’ (English movie) associates all over the world. Infact the distance from the city to the airport hasn’t deterred several from sending their drivers to pick up the orders.
With the help of their feedback forms filled at such places they have successfully managed to placate most with new trend-setting innovative products each week, that are retailed at high end stores in many countries. Value added services like gift-wrapping, personalization or customization have helped them retain an impressive list of MNCs who regularly order their corporate gifts, irrespective of the 100% advance payment.
As an extension of their commitment towards the revival of Indian heritage they’re now promoting hobby workshops which provide students the best craft supplies and required expertise bringing out their hidden talent; is a recent addition to the ‘Do it Yourself’ rage.