Kalapuri provides a platform to Indian artisans to grow, nourish and create an identity of their rich skills and unique products. It works in 25 villages in Kolhapur district in the Indian state of Maharashtra and over 80 percent of its artisans are women. Kalapuri and Women on Wings have joined hands to increase the number of jobs and create livelihood opportunities for women in rural India where Kalapuri is working.
Empowering women artisans
The journey of Kalapuri began in late 2014 with co-founder Aaparna Chavan at the driving seat after her successful startup’s Women’s Cottage and WomensTrendz.com specializing in women’s ethnic clothing products and women empowerment. The entire team of Kalapuri is dedicated towards this cause with ‘Reviving Indian handicrafts and artisans’ as its main motto. Kalapuri aims to increase awareness of handicrafts among global consumers, emphasizing that one not only buys a unique handmade piece, one also preserves India’s rich heritage and culture, and empowers rural artisans to earn sustainable incomes.
Kalapuri derives its name from Kolhapur, a town in the Indian state of Maharashtra, which is known for its nationwide available chappals, durable high quality leather slippers, which also is one of the most important products of Kalapuri. Next to these chappals, the social enterprise makes various sorts of jewelry like mangalsutra and silver, terracotta clay pottery, and baskets. Its products are traditionally handcrafted but have contemporary designs which can be found in lifestyle stores and not be limited to the craft-fairs alone. Proceeds from the sales of Kalapuri products go into the design and production of more innovative products, while striving to keep the craftswomen employed.