RANGE OF PRODUCTS:
Bearing Bernier’s brief description no mention is found of the walnut wood products that were made in Kashmir before or after the Mughal period prior to the 19th Century. Even Moorcroft, who has otherwise left a very detailed description of various Kashmiri arts and crafts, is silent about the art of wood carving in Kashmir. Lawrence on the other hand does briefly mention that walnut wood is used for manufacture of furniture and gunstock. By early 20th century Walnut wood industry seems to have been fairly established in the region as is evident from the description of the Indian Art Exhibition held in Delhi in the year 1906, though by this time both the products and to a certain extent the work was affected by European ideas and preferences. In today’s contemporary market the range of articles made in walnut wood include:
• Furniture items: These include tables, desks, dining tables, dressers, side tables, cabinets, wardrobes (door panels), T.V cabinets, chairs, sofas, stools, beds, folding screens, book racks etc.
• Semi Utilitarian Objects: these include trays, lamps, candle stands, incense burners, jewellery cases, snuff boxes; boxes for holding bracelets, powder, shoes, rings, perfume, handkerchiefs; cigarette case, mirror case, photo frames, pen case, bookcase (rehal), watch box etc.
• Gift Items: these include carved panels and shields, spoons, knives and forks, sculptures, models of house boats etc.