The talented craft producers of Nepal
Sana Hastakala provides marketing services to more than 60 producers, projects and organizations, thereby directly benefiting approximately 1,200 individual producers. We are pleased to feature some of our main producers– the beneficiaries of our joint efforts in fair trade.
Stoneware Ceramics: Thimi Ceramics
Tucked away in the ancient city of Bhaktapur, Thimi Ceramics is continuing the rich legacy of handcrafted Nepalese ceramics. With more than 25 years of experience, the quality of their work speaks for itself. The business is owned and operated by Laxmi & Santa Kumar Prajapti, two brothers who brought the dream of their father, a traditional potter, to life. Today these entrepreneurs employ twenty potters, with equal gender representation.
Since the 1980’s they have handcrafted earthenware and in 2004 they pioneered Nepalese stoneware. A favorite of consumers aboard, their ceramics are delicate yet strong; they have modern designs but retain their traditional craftsmanship. Their products meet the needs of today’s lifestyles by being dishwasher and microwave safe, lead free and chip resistant. By handcrafting every piece of pottery, Thimi Ceramics distinguishes itself from mass produced products with their skill, quality and personal touch.
Earthenware Ceramics: Everest Pottery
In 1989 Mr. Shiva Prajapati opened Everest Pottery, adopting the famous name of the world’s tallest mountain. Five years later it began working with Sana Hastakala and has been pleased with their relationship ever since. As a family business, Everest Pottery maintains traditional techniques of Nepalese pottery.
Working at a small scale in Thimi, Nepal (only ten employees–five women and five men) Everest Pottery produces glazed and terra cotta ceramics. With a focus on tableware, such as mugs and plates, they are able to focus their production on what they do best. Their beautiful products are lead free and safe for both the microwave and dishwasher. It is no wonder they are popular in foreign markets. Everest Pottery’s earthenware products are handcrafted works of art.
Pashmina: Shree Mahila Utthan Pashmina Udhyog
With more than 20 years of experience, Shree Mahila Utthan Pashmina Udhyog (SMUPU) is a respected name in the handcrafted pashmina (cashmere) industry. Mr. Dhundi Prasad Bhattachan is the owner of SMUPU, which is located in Kathmandu and has 30 employees, 50% of which are women. From processing raw wool to weaving and dying, SMUPU’s skilled employees handcraft all of their beautiful pashmina products. Sana Hastakala has worked with SMUPU for almost all of its 20 years and looks forward to the next 20 plus years.
Only real pashmina is used by SMUPU. In a world full of imitations, ensuring their product is authentic is a top priority. The results from lab tests confirm that their yarn is 97 to 99.5% pure pashmina. Scientifically impressive, yes, but the real test is by touch. Uncommonly soft and completely customizable, it is no mystery why pashmina is a favorite in Nepal and abroad.
Felt and Allo: Rara Nepal
For more than a decade Sana Hastakala has worked with Rara Nepal to promote and sell their handcrafted felt, knit and allo products. Beyond their dozen in-house employees in Lainchot, Kathmandu, Rara Nepal also provides employment to approximately 30 women who work from their homes. Rara Nepal supports the local Nepalese economy by purchasing local raw materials. These raw materials are transformed by their skilled workers through felting, needle knitting and crotchet knitting. The care taken at every stage of production is apparent in the quality of the products. Customers are always pleased with purchases, especially their felt products.
Rara Nepal participated in our assessment initiative, NGO Pilot Certification Program Sustainable Fair Trade Management System, which consisted of auditing Rara Nepal to improve its management practices. We thank them for their involvement and commitment to continuous improvement.
Paper: Lokta Paper
Established in 1990, Lokta Paper is a leader in Nepal’s handcrafted paper industry. Lokta Paper seeks to introduce its paper and products across the world. Sana Hastakala’s marketing and foreign buyers are key to achieving this goal. Beyond their quality products, Lokta Paper is socially responsibly as it works to improve the livelihoods of deprived persons in rural and urban Nepal by providing them with valuable jobs.
With a focus on innovative and environmentally friendly products, Lokta Paper products are a favorite at Sana Hastakala. Reducing their waste and ensuring that all paper comes from sustainability harvested trees is imperative for Lokta Paper. They also bring awareness about the use of Nepal’s natural resources.