Cluster Detail
Madhya Pradesh     Bhopal     Gwalior



A cluster is defined as a geographic concentration(a city/town/few adjacent villages and their adjoining areas)of units producing near similar products and facing common opportunities and threats.An artisan cluster is defined as geographically concentrated (mostly in villages/townships)household units producing handicraft/handloom products.In a typical cluster, such producers often belong to a traditional community, producing the long-established products for generations. Indeed, many artisan clusters are centuries old Artisan.

About Gwalior Cluster:-


Gwalior  Cluster falls under Madhya Pradesh State in Bhopal district.

The Gwalior cluster is able to form 300 plus Artisans & 15 SHGs supporting the strong work force.The mobilisation gains momentum day by day.


Cane and Bamboo:-


Cane and bamboo are the two most commonly-used materials in daily life in Madhya Pradesh.Products ranging from household implements to construction of dwelling houses to weaving accessories to musical instruments are made in bamboo.No mechanical devices are used in the craft, which is mainly a household industry.Besides basket-weaving, bamboo is used chiefly in the construction of houses and fencing.The craft traditionally provides part-time employment to cultivators in the lean season, although, increasingly, full-time artisans engaged in commercial activity can be found now.


Bamboo products are in evidence everywhere in Madhya Pradesh.There are innumerable types and shapes of the bamboo basket, varying with the use to which they are put.The men of the household usually weave the bamboo baskets.Each district has its own distinctive style. In general, conical baskets are used as carrying baskets and square or round bottomed ones are used for storage.An example is the Madhya Pradesh bamboo basket from Bhopal.

This has a square base that is capped inwards so that the corners of the square act as a support and it has a wide mouth.It is used for storing betel nuts.The Bodo bamboo basket is made with the help of a mould, which is used to get the shape of the neck and the mouth.From the neck to the bottom, brown paper is made into a cone and put into the basket so that its tip touches the bottom.Sand is filled inside to retain the shape of the cone and the weaving follows the shape of the cone.


Dolls and toys are also made with cane and bamboo.Apart from human and animal figures, toy shotguns and musical instruments are crafted.Umbrella handles made of bamboo are a speciality and have designs of leaves, creepers, plants, rings, and crosses etched on them.A special variety of bamboo known as the muli is used for the handles.



Raw materials:-

Madhya Pradesh being rich in raw materials has a large variety of beautiful products.The hill and the plain people, each have their own styles & designs.Apart from making baskets, cane & bamboo are also turned into furniture items, comparatively more modern innovation.Materials made of Cane and Bamboo are one of the very oldest of men creations, done by joining grass with grass and interlacing leaves with the minimum tools.It was considered clean for religious purposes.One of the finest examples of craft skills in Madhya Pradesh is its cane work.The raw material, profusely available in its lush forests, provides the industry with its strength and sustenance.




The whole stem of cane and bamboo is cut with a hacksaw and split longitudinally into various sizes by a billhook.The cane is heated on a slow fire, generally with a kerosene lamp for flexibility.The objects can be made in two different forms: coiling for baskets; and weaving for mats.In coiled basketry, foundation of the basket is built first by coiling a cane round a central core.It is built up spirally and gradually the width is increased until desired height is attained.The coils are joined together by sewing strips which can be attached in two ways: each stitch passed over the new portion of the foundation coil.Figure of eight is made i.e., the stitch passes behind up, over and under the preceding coil and right over the new coil.Thus coil material is sewn with the strips and a basket is made.The ornamentation of the baskets can be done with attaining lace, paper and shells.

The craftsmen cut the bamboo into sizes of desired length with the help of cutting tools called Dao.Bamboo length cut as per thickness with the help of different kinds of knives.The material thus ready is used for making frame of an article or furniture where as pencil cane is used for designing and binding purpose.The thick cane is used for making frame of an article or furniture where as pencil cane is used for designing and binding purpose.The cane is bend in the desired shape for a furniture or article by process of heating with blow lamp.The ends are joined with adhesive and nail and the joints are binded with strips of pencil cane. The items produced in cane & bamboo are cleaned with sand-paper and polished with varnish.

The production of cane and bamboo articles involves the cutting of whole stems with a hack saw and slicing them into splits of various sizes using a bill hook or dao.Slicing is done longitudinally along the length of the densely packed fibres and a fairly smooth operation, requiring only the requisite amount of moisture in the culm.A kerosene lamp is used to heat the cane before it can be bent into shape.


There are various stages that go in the production of cane products, beginning with the collection of raw material from the forests.To obtain a smooth surface, the upper layer of raw cane is scraped off.The long cane sticks are cut into smaller pieces that are followed by splitting the cane to obtain thin strips.Cane can be further split, making it as thin as required.The split cane is now bent using a blowlamp that may cause some burns on the surface; these are removed by rubbing with sandpaper.Following this, the cane can be woven based on the design of the articles being fashioned from it. After the finishing touches have been provided, the products may be dabbed with a coat of varnish before being dispatched to the market.

How to reach:-


By Air:-


Gwalior airport is located 8km from the main city. It is connected to all the major cities in India by direct flights.


By Road:-


Gwalior is well connected by a good road network connecting all the major places in Madhya Pradesh and the surrounding areas. Gwalior is well linked with Agra (118 km), Jaipur (350 km), Delhi (321 km), Lucknow, Bhopal (423 km), Chanderi (239 km), Indore (486 km), Jhansi (101 km), Khajuraho (275 km), Ujjain (455 km), and Shivpuri (114 km).


By Train:-


Gwalior railway station is conveniently located on the Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi -Chennai rail link. Among major trains, the Taj and Shatabdi Express connect Gwalior with Delhi and Agra.



Folk Painting:-

Madhuban, in the Himalayan foothills of Mithila, is the home of the Madhubani paintings. Traditionally, on festive and religious occasions, and during social celebrations, the women of Mithila decorated their homes and courtyards with images that were vibrant, colourful, and deeply religious. The subjects of these paintings were gods and goddesses, mythology and nature. The women use rich earthy colours --- reds, yellows, indigoes, and blues --- in their lyrical paintings of gods and goddesses like Rama-Sita, Krishna-Radha, and Shiva-Gauri. These were intended for shrines and in the khovar, the innermost chamber of the house where the bride and bridegroom began their married lives. The women used basic materials like gum, thread, and matchsticks or fine bamboo slivers wrapped in cotton to execute these wonderfully eloquent paintings.
The women passed on this traditional art form to their daughters over generations and this art is still alive and thriving. During a severe drought in the 1960s in the normally fertile region of Mithila, the people of Mithila were forced to look at something other than agriculture as a source of income. They got the women of Mithila to execute their art on paper and cloth, and today Madhubani is one of the most popular works of folk art all over the world. The themes and techniques used for the painting are still the same. The canvas has changed from walls and floors to cloth and paper and papier mache.
On auspicious occasions, and at festivals, marriages, and births, women paint aripan and dhuli chitras or dust paintings on the mud floors of their huts. Geometrical and highly stylised, these paintings are open astrological charts, a storehouse of the wisdom of the ages. Folk paintings are done by a community of tribesmen called the chitrakars, in the Santhal Parganas,. They paint scrolls in the traditional manner, depicting stories and moral lessons. They carry the scroll paintings from one Santhal village to another and sing the story, for which they receive some remuneration.

Raw Materials Used :-
1. Plywood (water proof)
2. Longcloth / pipline
3. Fevicol
4. Yellow oxide
5. Chalks
6. Arabic gum
7. Gold foil
8. Stones
9. Poster color Paint
10. Round brush-0, 00,000,1,3,6
11. Flat brush-2
12. Yellow carbon


The characteristic of Thanjavur painting is that the figures in the paintings have a round body and egg shaped effulgent eyes and are surrounded by curtains and arch. These paintings will illuminate in the dark room.

From the humble canvas and brush the ultimate form of the beauty, the Tanjore paintings, is made. The Canvas used for this painting previously was wood of the Jackfruit tree but the modern artist uses plywood. A layer of cloth is pasted over this plywood using the Arabic adhesive. A uniform coating of limestone paste and a binding material is applied and the cloth is let to dry. The artist then sketches the meticulous pictures on the canvas while the paste of limestone and fastening substance is used during adorning and engraving ornaments into the paintings.




1. Remove starch from the cloth ( soaking it in water for 1 hr and then dry the cloth).

2. Take 60 ml approxmatily Fevicol and mix it with 1/2 cup water well (to get milk consistency

3. Dip the cloth in this fevicol paste and squeeze it. Repeat this process 5 to 6 times (so that the cloth absorbs and gets coated with fevicol well)

4. Squeeze the cloth slightly and stick it on the plywood board.To stick:- First stick cloth one one side of the board well and then pull the cloth on the opposite side well and stick the cloth well. Use palm to remove the air bubbles and wrinkles by pressing the cloth from center to the edges.

5. Now stick the third side and fourth side in the same procedure.

6. Pour the remaining fevicol-water mixture (if left out) on this board and spread out evenly.

7. Dry this board in Sun till dry.



Leather Craft:-


Mojris (or jootis or pagarkhiyas) is foot wear made in Rajasthan from locally cured leather. They are very well-known for the quality of workmanship and the variety and richness of design. They are entirely hand-crafted and are measured with the fingers.


The process followed is for different layers of the sole to be stuck with home-made glue. Once this is dry, the sole is stitched with cotton or leather thread. The upper portion is then embroidered by women who are very skilled at this. Plain or coloured piping is stitched to the edge of the inside portion of the upper form after the leather is dipped in water to make it soft. At every stage the leather is hammered to make the stitching and the pasting firm.


When the upper form has been attached to the sole it is put on a wooden last to give it a final shape; local dyes are sometimes sprayed on the upper in shades of red, green, and dark pink. Simple tools like a needle, a knife, a wooden block, and a hammer, are used. There is a thin strip of leather attached to the front edge of the sole, curling around the toe and joining the upper form, which protects the toe. On the back portion, a strip of leather stands out by an inch to enable the wearer to pull on the jooti. The stitching on the sole is always done with several strands of cotton thread. The simplest form of the jooti has a plain leather upper form, stitched to a plain sole. There is no difference between the right and the left foot and the jooti takes the shape of the wearer's foot.



Raw materials’s Leather Craft:-


The main raw material that is used for making leather crafts in Tamilnadu is the skin of goats and sheep. The creating of leather crafts specifically the leather puppets follows some procedures like washing the hide, cleaning and decorating it with immense perfection and dexterity. Once the puppets are structured, then the dyeing and outlining of the borders are done. Apart from creating these leather puppets, the craftsmen of Tamilnadu  create leather items that are used for home décor like lamp shades, wall hangings etc.



Leather Craft’s Process:-


Leather is bought from the wholesale market and soaked for two days in huge drums. It is then washed thoroughly to rid it of excess tanning ingredients. While fully wet it is stretched on the floor and left to dry. This process involves some skill as the leather needs to be stretched uniformly to avoid wrinkles. Good stretching can also increase the leather surface area by 5 - 10%. At this stage the water in the wet leather acts as an adhesive and holds it firmly to the floor. As the leather dries it automatically disengages from the floor.After this it is marked and cut to size with scissors and cardboard formats.he piece which needs to be embossed is then moistened with a sponge and rolled out with a rolling pin.A block is made according to the desired design by the acid etching process used in old letter presses. The die is placed in a ball press machine and the leather is sandwiched between the die and a sheet of hard rubber and strongly compressed.The leather is again cut according to patterns and assembled to make bags or boxes. Boxes are made using cardboard stiffeners and everything is pasted together using a rubber-based glue. Cardboard is cut using a die, because the cutting has to be very precise. Even a slight error ruins the final shape of the bag.



Leather Craft’s Techniques:-


Various other techniques are involved in making a complete product, the most important of which is skiving (to disguise the edge of the leather without increasing thickness though fashion pundits have opposing views on this), creasing (to ensure an even fold), beating(with a mallet to increase effectiveness of the adhesive) and polishing (rubbing the leather hard with a smooth piece of stone or glass to give the leather that shiny surface, the pressure and heat involved also closes the pores and gives the leather a high and even density). Bags are made by stitching together the pieces using a sewing machine. Unlike fabric stitching leather has to be stitched with a more heavy duty machine and a certain amount of pre-stitch adhesion is required to keep piece in place.



Textile hand embroidery:-

The term embroidery is basically defined as the method of ornamenting a piece of clothing with needlework;or embellishment with fanciful details.Thus embroidery is regarded as the art of decorating textiles using a needle and thread.Embroidery of Gujarat has earned its fame because of the versatility of creations by the artisans.The artisans of Gujarat use an array of stitches that are used to decorate the items.The most important centres of embroidery work of Gujarat are located in the Sarasota and Kutch regions and are admired for the creative excellence.The embroidery of Gujarat is one of the main sources of income for different other communities.Today, even though embroidery is amongst the most traditional methods of decorating clothes, it is still as popular.Designs may date back to ancient times, or the modern geometric modern day designs, but all the same embroidery continues to be one of the common ways of decorating clothes.In fact, specialists feel that today,there is much more scope for creativity and innovation, because of the acceptance level.Ari embroidery of Gujarat has its international market in Nigeria where women drape themselves(during ceremonial occasions)in the embroidered cloth from this region. This has ornamentation of tikris and beads, which make them, look attractive.This type of embroidery is done on a frame of wooden beams.The fabric is

worked upon with a long needle, threads, tikris and beads.Multi sized frames are used,usually about 1.5 feet high, to secure the cloth on which the design is sketched with a stencil.One hand secures the thread under the cloth to the needle while the other hand moves the needle on top of the cloth with ease.Decorative tikris and beads are attached to the cloth with the needle.



This has ornamentation of tikris and beads, which make them, look attractive.This type of embroidery is done on a frame of wooden beams.The fabric is worked upon with a long needle, threads, tikris and beads.Multi sized frames are used,usually about 1.5 feet high, to secure the cloth on which the design is sketched with a stencil.One hand secures the thread under the cloth to the needle while the other hand moves the needle on top of the cloth with ease.Decorative tikris and beads are attached to the cloth with the needle.

Another embroidery pattern is the jaali or net embroidery in geometric or floral shapes and is done by pulling the warp and weft threads and fixing them with minute buttonhole stitches.The finished products dominantly comprise items for household use like curtains, bedspreads, furniture covers and dress material.


Raw Materials used:-

The fabric is worked upon with a long needle,threads, tikris and beads.Multi sized frames are used, usually about 1.5 feet high, to secure the cloth on which the design is sketched with a stencil.One hand secures the thread under the cloth to the needle while the other hand moves the needle on top of the cloth with ease.



As embroidery is not so technical craft to follow procedure but then also small process like:

  1. The motif is made on the tracing screen for symmetrical marking and uniformity, like the Khaka.
  2. The motifs are marked on the fabric with a marking mixer(liquid) for embroidery work.
  3. Now set the marked fabric very tight from all directions.(Saree, Dress materials, etc.)On Wooden frame(it can be done without frame also).
  4. It will work easier to do embroidery with the help of frame to reduce tension and get pucker less product.
  5. The desired motif is neatly embroidered with different stitches(Pakko, Kachho, Soof, Rabari, kharek etc)to achieve desired motif.
  6. The result can be many colors and is easy to make.

Set the fabric(Saree, Dress, material,etc.)on Wooden frame(it can be done without frame also)according to the design with desired allowance for the product.The motif is made the tracing screen for symmetrical making and uniformity, like the Khaka.The motif is marked with a marking mixer in a liquid form(Kerosene and gali powder) whether for embroidery the desired motif is neatly embroidery with different stitches to achieve desired motif.

Embroidery designs are prepared by fixing small round shaped mirrors to the material with the help of the buttonhole stitch, the outline being sketched by hand.Silken thread is used for the stitching done in stem or herringbone, closely worked.Flowers and creepers are patterned against a dark background.




Techniques vary with the community and region.The term embroidery is basically defined as the method of ornamenting a piece of clothing with needlework; or embellishment with fanciful details.Thus embroidery is regarded as the art of decorating textiles using a needle and thread.This includes the hand and machine embroidery methods.And till date,hand embroidery continues to be an expensive and time-consuming method.However, in spite of this it is preferred because of the intricacy of the handiwork involved.


The basic techniques an embroiderer uses includes:-

  1. Cross stitch
  2. Crewel work
  3. Quilting









About Implementing Agency

Madhya Pradesh     Bhopal     Mrignananee