What's New

Ramakrishnan, Shilpa runs a company called VShilpa Education Services that is involved both in the handicraft sector where it provides provide business skills and in the broader education sector providing creative , academic and soft skills. She has in the past worked in organisations of repute like Shoppers Stop, Welspun Retail, TATA Group and Career Launcher. Her interests lie in working with artisans at the grass root level , children and young adults.

November 2007, Craft Revival Trust

What's New

New Product Development
Product development is an essential process for any organization as the entire gamut of selling activities revolves around the core qualities of the product. Itís very important to lay down clearly the entire process of developing a product.

Core Product
Itís usually believed that we sell craft; what we actually sell is a crafted product. If the consumer finds utility in the product he buys he would definitely come back and buy more of it. Therefore it is essential to focus on the benefit, core advantage that the product would offer which determines the buying decision.

Therefore when bringing a new product into picture it makes business sense to have answers to the following questions .
  • Who is the target market and who is the decision maker in the purchasing process?

  • What product features must the product incorporate?

  • What benefits will the product provide?

  • How will consumers react to the product?

  • How will the product be produced most cost effectively?

  • Prove feasibility through virtual computer aided rendering, and rapid prototyping

  • What will it cost to produce it?

The answers to the above questions help in the development of a healthy Core Product

Developed the Core
The market is slowly evolving and craft adds an indigenous edge to the product. Many of our business partners in the retail industry are now realizing the same and incorporating the same in the product lines.

Banjarans of Rajasthan would have never imagined their old sarees being used on wall hangings, cushion covers, stationery and even umbrellas. The product is beautiful very different and so ethnic. Termed as old moti the technique is fast catching up and the spread very visible on the streets of Jaipur and suburbs like Durgapura. I would term is as innovation and evolution of an existing product using craft.

Saw Madhubani paintings on lampshades, coasters, trays, kurtis, and sarees at Madhubani Bihar. Chiffons with goddess kali painted in different hues of red looked feminine Ė outstanding! Products invoke the character of the individual and craft the essence.

Shibori is on sarees, bedcovers, dupattas and stoles. So far Japanese influence was seen in cars and food, but an amalgamation of the Indian tie and Dye technique with a Japanese twist only goes to show the evolution and preference of the customer.

Crochet skirts are popular and so are the cushion covers in the lovely little town of Mahableshwar, which has tourists taking back crochet table linen, shawls, and wall hangings.

Today crochet is widely used on many products .It adds an altogether different character to the product.

Many designers today have craft as a different section of their product line, which is so very encouraging. New ideas can come from anywhere. Students, artisans, designers, customers.

Hence product development is important. It involves various stages and is the most important process of any business and needs to be an ongoing process.

Hence the final product in order to adapt to the business environment and find a competitive edge should be
  • Fit for use

  • Reliable

  • Pleasing in appearance

  • Easy and efficient to use

  • Easy to maintain

  • Safe to use and manufacture

  • Financially viable

  • Legal

  • Environment friendly

Thus Craft combined with a healthy core product can better the overall offering. A better offering gives rise to better sales and a developing market and hence more New Products!

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