Origin: Glassware of Uttar Pradesh echoes the mystic tales of the phenomenal love affair between craft and Uttar Pradesh. Art connoisseur Emperors Akbar, Shah Jahan, Dara Sikoh and Farrukhsiyar flaunted their love for craft and ensured it blossomed during their tenure. This legacy was carried forward by the Nawabs of Awadh and other nobles.
Firozabad in Uttar Pradesh has been bestowed upon with the crown of ‘City of Bangles’ as it is home to the flourishing glass industry since 15th century. Invaders introduced glass to India. They carried with them glass articles and soon glass culture became an integral part of India. Initially, the discarded glass residues were melted in local furnace called Bhatti to craft bangles. This later progressed to colored or while glass pieces being employed to make chandeliers. Muslim influence is clearly visible in the glass handicrafts.
Present Day: The land of art and artisans, Uttar Pradesh is pregnant with culturally rich centers of art tradition. Firozabad is home to around 400 industries engrossed in glass production. Every year, these industries work on evolving the techniques to craft unique patterns. The entire community of Firozabad is dependent on glassware for its livelihood.
Varanasi and Saharanpur are also appreciated for their glass industries. Varanasi is known for glass beads and a very thin glass from which little pieces titled tikulis are cut. These are put on the foreheads of women or are used for beautifying fabrics. On the other hand, Saharanpur works wonders with glass toys and mouth pieces of hukkas. Varanasi is known for its glass beads, while glass mouthpieces for hukkas and toys containing coloured liquid called panchkora are the specialities of Saharanpur.
There are varied products made out of glass such as bangles, chandeliers, bottles, jars, candle stands, glasses, flower vases, and electric wares such as decorative lights, bulbs etc.
Procedure: The process of crafting glass bangles is lengthy and intricate. It calls for precise and detailed work. The molten raw glass are passed through furnace pipes to break it into equal dimensions. Then they are passed through automated rollers that stretches them out like threads. The molten glass wraps on the rollers to come like glass that is then cut with the cutter. Open edges have to be joined to form a bangle. Next step is sadai where the jagged ends are smoothened. Pressure is applied on both ends to melt a bit of glass.
This glassware is exported to the most of the countries around the globe. Almost half of the glassware produced out of Firozabad factory is exported. These goods are in high demand in USA, United Kingdom, France, UAE, Belgium etc.
Bring Home: You can buy the glassware products at local market of Aligarh, Firozabad, Varanasi, Agra etc