Origin: Lac handicrafts are one of the most important handicrafts of Rajasthan. These handicrafts are known for their beauty and vibrancy. It was in the 18th century, that the Lac art was introduced by Jaipur Maharaja Ram Singh. He invited artists from the other states to establish the art of Lac industry in Rajasthan. This art form whispers of Persian culture. As, it originally entered India from Persia through Punjab. Since then, this art form has been developed by the tribal people of Rajasthan. After the Second World War, this industry blossomed and has flourished since then.
Present Day: The Lac work from cities like Sawai, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Madhopur are known for their vibrant colours and beautiful work. The cities of Jodhpur and Jaipur host many Lac work centres where you can experience the art of making this craft. Lac work is not only popular for jewellery but is also known for architectural pieces and decorative items. You can find this art on doors and windows of houses in Rajasthan.
With time the art of making lac jewellery has evolved rapidly and is now available in different shapes and sizes. The art of Lac is known for its excellent craftsmanship and skilled beauty. The art of Lac is often compared to the art of enamelling. However, the distinction lies in its uniqueness and availability in varied forms.
The Lac art is available in various styles, colours and patterns. Lac Jewellery is adorned with coloured beads, mirror work, decorative charms and wires and are always done in bright hues. Lac art is used in making a lot of products, the most important use is jewellery making. The different jewellery items made are necklaces, bangles, earrings and beautiful jewellery boxes. Other useful products are pens, pen-stands, coasters, napkin holders, mirrors, key chain, photo frame and ashtrays etc.
Procedure: Lac is a resin extracted from wild trees and plant. The resin is collected by insects. The term lac is derived from the English word, which means a large number of insects (1 lac or 100 thousand) that are required to produce a pound of lac. Lac is majorly found in Asian countries.
The process of making Lac art calls for accuracy and skill. The major steps involved in the process are heating, combining, kneading, hammering and shaping till we get a dough. When Lac bangles are made, lac is expanded with heat and circular shapes are made as per required diameter and thickness. A roller is used to roll the bangle to achieve desired thickness. After this lac jewellery is polished and final finishing is done. Lac jewellery is also ornamented with colourful beads and mirror. For making of other products, lac is shaped according to the desired outcome and then painted with different dyes. After this, it is polished and final touches are given.
Lac jewellery is very famous in India as well as abroad. Tourists visiting India always buy Lac souvenirs as they are fascinated by Lac items and jewellery. Lac items are exported all across the world and have huge demand in USA, UK, UAE, France etc.
Bring Home Lac: You can buy this jewellery in all the local markets all across Rajasthan.