With complete ban on plastic being enforced in Mysuru city, an artisan has come all the way from Pondicherry to sell specially designed hand baskets made of waste newspaper.
30-year-old Vijayalakshmi was earlier engaged in making ordinary paper bags. Over the years, Vijayalakshmi improvised on her skills and creativity and started making lifestyle products such as jewellery boxes, small pouches, laundry basket and wall hangings out of discarded newspapers.
An interesting fact is the durability of the baskets are expected to be than ten years. They can even be washed and reused again. Natural colours and natural varnish are used to coat its exteriors which does not absorb water. She has displayed her creative works at the ongoing Handloom Exhibition at JSS Urban Haat, which concludes on April 7.
Vijayalakshmi who is visiting Mysuru for the first time says: 'I came to know that Mysuru has being awarded as cleanest city in the country. It was when I thought of displaying my unique newspaper products.'
'When tsunami had stuck India coast, a couple had visited our village near Auroville, Pondicheery. who taught me to create lifestyle products using newspapers, from which I am earning good money. Most of them wonder and ask is this really created out of newspapers, as the baskets are of such good strength.'
'The works are not only unique, but makes the onlookers to mesmerise. This is the first time I saw the baskets created out of newspapers, and are natural. Different size of baskets with hues of colours are really good one and affordable,' adds Yamuna, resident.
Mother browses laptop to teach knitting for blind girl
Her life took a downturn when Kalyani lost her vision at the age of five. It was then her mother Seethalakshmi who stood next to her, and gave moral support to Kalyani.
Now 55-year-old Kalyani and her 74-year-old mother Seethalakshmi are interdependent. Natives of Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh, the duo are in Mysuru to take part in the handloom exhibition.
Seethalakshmi did not had much knowledge about knitting yarns. It was three decades ago, she decided to join a computer class just to learnt how to browse internet. Now, watching videos on knitting, and updating new skills, she teacher her daughter.
Kalyani says: 'For the past 30 years I have been working on my skills. My mother browses the internet on her laptop and explains new designs and teaches how to weave using multi coloured yarn. Due to which I come out with unique designs, which fetches me quite a good money.'
Kalyani who knows to play Veena, going down the memory lane said: 'When I lost my eye sight, I discontinued my studies and was completely upset about my future. By that time my father too passed away. It was my mother who motivated me. I have plans to teach for interested women in the knitting, after couple of years.'