From making candy jars using age old lacquer technique of Channapatna - to incorporating traditional materials into contemporary lifestyle products- IK is on a grand mission.
Preethi Prabhu needs no introduction. She is the very talented and creative lady behind the Blog - IndyaKaleidoscope. Preethi gave up a secure job as an IT professional to follow her dreams and passion for Indian culture and heritage to start this design journey.
"The journey has just begun and there is a lot to accomplish" says Preethi.
Make good quality traditional arts and crafts available to people who want them. “Though this is our major focus, it is not our USP” says Preethi. “Affordability is the key. Off late there is a huge commotion about products that are “handmade”, “eco-friendly” and “organic” and they reflect on the price tags. We deal with the artisans directly. It helps cut a lot of middle men costs, hence making our products more affordable. Our USP - Good quality and affordable price .”
Q & A with Preethi Prabhu
1- What does IK sell?
- Traditional Handicrafts.
- Lifestyle products made from traditional techniques
- Contemporary products made out of traditional material
- Handmade products.
- Above all, the mandatory norm is that the products have to be Indian and Eco-Friendly
2- Where do your products come from?
Our products sources can be classified into two catogories- IK Handpicked (10%) & IK Social (90%)
Could you please explain the categories?
IK Handpicked account for 10% of our products and include
- Just about anything that is Indian, Beautiful and of-course Earth Safe.
- Heritage products (Vintage & Antique)
- Pre-Loved, stuff that was previously owned; rescued before it ends up in the trashcan.
While all this is just information about “what” and “where” the products come from, the reason for you to buy an IK product, our USP – “Affordable Quality Products”.
Partnering with artisans lets IK explore the techniques and materials, and how they can be made a part of our everyday life. You can find classic pieces that have been made from ages and then there are exclusive pieces that are made just for IK.
4- The Online Store and Future plans for IK
“Web sales are in progress and we will be having a retail outlet soon. For a country that had handicraft as its second largest business, we are not even scraping the surface at the moment. We are in the process of meeting more artisans and self help groups and expanding our range. We are also gearing up to handle large corporate orders“ says Preethi.
With India having so many colourful handicrafts, the store is very aptly called “IndyaKaleidoscope”. I need to thank Preethi for taking time out to speak to me. Wishing this enterprising and down to earth young lady a very successful Journey. I look forward to seeing IK do its part for Indian Cultural heritage and its varied art and crafts.
IK website and blog: indyakaleidoscope
Her commitment to the cause made the media sit up and take notice. India's popular NewsDaily published a feature about Preethi and the Store. Preethi's Interview in India's Popular NewsDaily >>HERE
Images via Deccan Chronicle and IK, Preethi Prabhu