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CRAFTSPEOPLE’S most important prerogative is to create objects that clients need which can be sold so that they can earn a living and support their families. While aspects of design and development of the product are dealt with in another chapter, here we will look at the various traditional production, distribution and marketing strategies that are available to craft communities in India.
A craftsperson is a skilled producer working primarily with his/her hands and traditional, often simple, tools to make articles of daily use. There is great variety and diversity within the crafts community in every part of India. A craftsperson could be village or urban based, who procures his/her own material, uses manual skills learnt recently or from family traditions. He/she may produce utility items or specialised objects. The crafts community may supply local markets, sell through village haats, or transport goods to urban markets or for export. They may be self-employed or work as wage-earners or as members of a cooperative.
It is important to understand this diversity to appreciate the number of problems that may arise for the craftsperson at every step of the process of production and sale. It is important to remember how complex the system is and how many such systems of crafts production and marketing we have in our country.
The structure for production and marketing of crafts have the following framework:
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