Handicrafts Introduction



Handicrafts are unique expressions and represent a culture, tradition and heritage of a country. The Handicraft Industry is one of the important productive sector. Various attempts have been made to define this broad and diversified industry. The following definition strives to cover diversity and complexity of Handicraft Industry.

Defining Handicrafts:

Definition According to United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization/Information Technology Community (UNESCO/ITC) International Symposiumon “Crafts and the International Market: Trade and Customs Codification”, Manila, Philippines, October 1997:

Handicrafts can be defined as products which are produced either completely by hand or with the help of tools. Mechanical tools may be used as long as the direct manual contribution of the artisan remains the most substantial component of the finished product. Handicrafts are made from raw materials and can be produced in unlimited numbers. Such products can be utilitarian, aesthetic, artistic, creative, culturally attached, decorative, functional, traditional, religiously and socially symbolic and significant.


Definition according to Govt. of India:

Handicraft can be defined, which is made by hand; should have some artistic value; they may or may not have functional utility.

The Importance of Handicrafts:

The Cultural Importance:

Handicrafts play very important role in representing the culture and traditions of any country or region. Handicrafts are a substantial medium to preserve of rich traditional art, heritage and culture, traditional skills and talents which are associated with people’s lifestyle and history.

The Economic Importance:

Handicrafts are hugely important in terms of economic development. They provide ample opportunities for employment even with low capital investments and become a prominent medium for foreign earnings.

Handicrafts Trade
Suggested Reading