The craft and Community:
Leather craft is one of the non – textile Craft being practiced in Kutch since generations. The Marwada Meghwal community – who in heritage the craft skills – have migrated from Sindh and Rajasthan to Kutch. They used to work closely with cattle herders (Maldhari community) of Kachchh, who traditional supplied them with hides. The tanning and other pre-processes were done at the village level only. This slowly disappeared due to cultural and social stigma associated with it and now leathers artisans are buying leather from outside. The community is blessed with the other embroidery skills, resulted into shared craft traditions to decorate the leather goods.
The main techniques of the leather are Jari Kaam and Torni work. In Jari Kaam the silver and golden Jari is being used to create various design and motifs on the various leather items. Traditionally the Jari kaam is used to decorate the items that were used to ride the horse. The same work is also transferred in the modern products like shoes, bags and other accessories. In Torni work technique, the coarse yarns were used to create colorful patterns on various leather items. It is mainly used to decorate the borders of leather goods. The dyeing of leather is also q unique practice of Kutch. The raw leather is dyes with various dyes locally available.
The craft products:
The traditional leather craft products include fans, footwear, mirror frames and lanterns. The modern products are belt, wallet, big and small bags, toys and combination with other crafts.