Paper Wings Women Association is a community owned enterprise of women in Self Help Groups from villages in Haryana. It is an initiative from Action Center for Transformation (ACT) and the women artisans are specialized in up-cycling newspapers to various home and lifestyle products. The technique often used is coiling, rolling and twisting strips of newspaper that are then weaved into a product.
New technique bring new products
But there is more to old newspapers. By turning them into ‘papier maché’ a whole new range of products can be developed. This became the ultimate aim of Women on Wings’ expert Marie-Gon when she visited the ACT Center early July and came across a few papier maché products. Marie-Gon instantly knew this was a technique she could develop further into lifestyle and home products. So Marie-Gon visited the Paper Wings village workshop near Gurugram where she worked with ACT founder Nilanjana Das and some of Paper Wings’ artisans on the art of papier maché and its techniques. Says Nilanjana: “We had an awesome motivating day at our village based workshop. How wonderful is this art when waste is made into a beautiful product. And how fun it was to create and understand the color schemes. We look forward to launching new fascinating products from our artisan groups. The women are super excited to work with the papier maché technique and develop new products.”
Door to new markets
Women on Wings’ expert in product development and interior design Marie-Gon is Dutch but lives most of the year in Pune, India, with her husband. In The Netherlands she still works with big brands, one being the VT Wonen & Design Trade Show, the largest annual trade show in its kind in The Netherlands, for which she designs and styles all public spaces, restaurants and lounges. Since 2017 she shares her knowledge and experience with a number of Women on Wings partners with the aim to jointly develop contemporary home and lifestyle products that open the door to new – international – markets for the partners.