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“Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success,” believes, the JAIPUR. With artistic designs, aesthetic colours and supreme texture, Jaipur Rugs Company, has continued to carry forward the rich heritage of designs into homes in more than 40 countries around the world. The dream-weavers have empowered millions of marginalized families and helped in the upliftment of the society.
The journey of the visionary Nand Kishore Chaudhary started with a small shoe shop in Churu, a district town in Rajasthan. His father’s business of the shoe shop was not doing well so he closed it and secured a permanent job as a cashier at the Bank of India. But he wanted to do something on his own and met with Ilay Cooper, a young writer and photographer from England who was studying Shekhawati paintings. Chaudhary came to know that the carpet business is growing and there is lot of demand but less of supply. The idea appealed to him and in 1978, he borrowed Rs. 5000 from his father to set up two carpet looms in the courtyard of his house with nine artisans. Today, Chaudhary is India’s largest manufacturer of hand knotted rugs with a family of over 40,000 artisans in 600 villages. USA is the biggest market for Jaipur Rugs and it sells in almost all the big and small stores. Jaipur Rugs has expanded its product portfolio to daris, jute, pillows and poufs apart from rugs. “The idea is to create everything to do with home interiors and have a JAIPUR home in every home,” said Yogesh Chaudhary, Director of Jaipur Rugs Company and the eldest son of Nand Kishore Chaudhary.
Inspiration behind the designs
The designs are inspired by nature and its beauty. “The Chaos Theory collection by Kavita Chaudhary, the Design Director of Jaipur Rugs, traces the beauty in nature’s seemingly cluttered patterns. Enthused by natural materials, classic color palettes, and the distinctive work of artisans and craftspeople she works with; Kavi’s rugs are inspired by the purity and chaos in nature,” explained Yogesh Chaudhary. The chaos theory is a perfect blend of traditional weaving with abstract and modern designs
“About six-seven years ago, all the designs were traditional and they had nothing to do with fashion. But nowadays, we are following a lot of fashion trends. Yellow, pink, purple are in demand. Pink is one of the most trending colours and we have a whole series of pink rugs in different constructions. Yellow is also very important for us keeping in mind the latest trends,” added Chaudhary.
One of the top-selling models in about 35 countries is a collection that is a combination of wool and silk. It is hand-carved with raised designs. “It is not a common technique because most of the manufacturers make designs either out of wool or silk. A combination of both is rare. We were the first ones to officially start the commercial production of wool and silk in the industry,” he said.
Chaudhary compared his designs to the Kashmiri carpets and explained that they are either made of wool or silk. “They are very traditional and they haven’t yet updated themselves according to needs of the modern homes. Their colours are also typical and not updated, however, our carpets are colourful, modern and sophisticated,” Chaudhary pointed.
Colours play an important role
In the US, Jaipur Rugs Company is well known for the designs and colours. The design team does a lot of research with the colours. “The five things that customers look for while buying a carpet is colour, colour, colour, design and texture. So if we get the colours right, then most of the work is done. Getting the perfect colour is one of the key success factors of Jaipur Rugs,” he said.
Rugs as a fashion statement
Chaudhary shared that in Turkey or Iran, there is a minimum of 4-8 carpets in one house. It adds to beauty and glamour of homes in those countries. People sit on a carpet together and bond over meals. They understand the value of a carpet at home. According to him, there is a research which shows that that carpets help reduce electricity cost both in summers and winters. It keeps the home cooler in summers and warmer in winters. However, there is a lot of myth around carpets in India and the company wants to educate people about the beauty of owning a carpet.
In India, interior designers still use it as a part of a decoration around the table. He also feels that price remains a big barrier. “Nobody has taken the carpet market seriously in India and customers don’t know the benefits and the prices. What they know is just Kashmiri carpet! There are a lot of fraudulent practices happening in India because the market is unorganised unlike US where large-format stores have started selling carpets and people don’t have to go to separate stores for carpets and rugs. A lot of traditional stores are disappearing and there is a lot of transparency coming in. Our duty is to create awareness and understand the advantages and beauty of owning it,” he said.
The company is in talks with some designers to come up with a designer collection.
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