About Giri Women

Krishna’s Thangka Paintings

A resident of Lahaul, a distant district in Himachal Pradesh, Krishna makes Thangka Paintings. An ancient Tibetan Art based on Buddhist Philosophy in which Krishna and her team illustrates Buddhist deities, mandalas, scenes, contemporary art etc. Krishna has received 6years of formal training post which she started pursuing a career in the same field. "It requires practice, dedication, concentration, balance and effort', using a variety of colours, natural pigments, acrylic paints, and even real gold for paintings. It takes around 1-3months to complete a painting depending upon the size and detailing required for the same. Sometimes even upto a year". Krishna hopes that she gets to earn more through her business, to worry less about being able to meet her basic necessities and concentrate more on the art. She intends to teach Thangka painting and could use some help with contacts and funding. Krishna dreams of being able enough to display her art worldwide someday.

'The Sheep of Himalaya' by Anuradha

Anuradha was always passionate about wanting to do something for her people while preserving her culture. She pursued an MBA program and upskilled herself in order to do the same. With the skills she attained out there, she started her own brand 'The Sheep of Himalaya'. It specializes in Kinnauri products originating from the Kinnaur District of Himachal Pradesh. Her team consists of 10-12 women from neighboring villages. The products made are generally fine-tuned with gorgeous, intricate detailing which exhibits excellent weaving skills. All the products are handmade and it often requires weeks to weave a product depending upon the intricacy of the design. Talking about the support that she has received from her village, Anuradha says, "Most of the villagers have been supportive and proud of the work we do. The response has overall been good, however there are some that fail to understand the involvement of women working here. Irrespective of these opinions I try to focus on my work and bring the best out of it." About her future plan for the brand, Anuradha emphasized on the fact that a lot of women come up to her to sell their handmade products. However the point remains that these products need to be stored, since most of the products that The Sheep Of Himalaya sells are made-to-order. In the near future, she hopes to open up a store for the brand that will also help display and sell products made by these women artisans.

‘Chamba Rumal’ by Anita

Anita, hailing from Chamba, a small district in Himachal Pradesh runs the 'Chamba Rumal' embroidering rumals i.e., handkerchiefs influenced by Pahari Miniature paintings, Ramayana, Mahabharata and other scriptures. Anita learnt the craft from her mother and her art is an expression of her passion for the same. Anita recalls being motivated by her teachers at the training center to revive the age-old art-form that was rather neglected at her village. She wants to take it to a global level where the artform is recognized and respected. Till date, Anita has trained 300 girls free of cost and works along with a team of 16-18 women. "We started from a small corner in my house and now I have rented a room to teach the girls and complete the orders. We would love to have a space of our own, if income permits in the near future". Anita faces various issues in terms of infrastructural, operational and logistical issues while running the business. At times providing material to students for free, for teaching them the same gets difficult as well, for funds are limited. Yet, Anita wishes to empower her students by helping them earn a living through upskilling them. While enhancing the value and recognition of the craft she works on.