Right from its inception, Origin One is known for its focus on innovative stationery one that caters to the creatives and the design loving global nomads with its contemporary designs. Over the years, it has been able to establish for itself a space that screams sustainable, artisanal and conscious, whether it be through their own minimalist designs or with their brand collaborations. Evolving the idea of identity creation and contemporary designs, their latest collaboration with Kaati, a carpet-making brand is a collection of vibrant, abstract, and interesting handmade rugs. To understand the aesthetics and creative process behind the Kaati x Origin One collaboration, Pushkar Thakur, founder and brain behind Origin One tells us more.
Could you tell me a little about the project?
I started Origin One in 2015 with stationery and an eye on expanding it to home and lifestyle products in the future. This April, I reconnected with a friend, Nikita, who is the founder of Kaati which coincidentally also started in 2015. We quickly became super-close with all synergies and aesthetics in sync and found ourselves talking about making something together which led to finally getting around to starting the Origin One Home section with rugs.
What got you interested in the art of carpet making?
The process of making handmade rugs fascinated me to no end. Learning about everything carpets from Nikita fed into the constant curiosity of how things are made and we ended up on a road trip to carpet city, Bhadohi where her family has been manufacturing carpets since 1950. There began the process of learning from the weavers themselves.
We completely submerged ourselves into every aspect of carpet construction, from yarn spinning to dying, the various weaving methodologies, and the entire journey of the many hands it takes to make a rug.
How did the collaboration with Kaati come about?
Nikita brought her excellent expertise on all things carpets, the manufacturing, and the market insight both locally and internationally along with her aesthetic sensibility which tied up with my design expertise, and a common need to create products from the ground up while being socially responsible i.e., being able to provide the local artisans with work in the thick of the pandemic lockdown.
The most fascinating thing for us was the translation of uber-contemporary designs into rugs by weavers with little knowledge of the outside world and how the whole thing comes together at the grassroots level.
What is the thought and creative process behind the rugs?
Process and material is everything and the small things matter. We went in with that mantra, wanting to create contemporary affordable luxury and basics that are richly nuanced with the complexity of their construction. With those parameters in place and a selection of the highest grade of material, the visual process came from tying up the aesthetics of both our brands and our mutual appreciation of design language. All that learning buzzing in us, we literally started with handmade drawings, some of my art, and all the various shapes and symbols that are definitive of Origin One and overlap with the aesthetic sensibility of Kaati.
Is there a specific aesthetic and design that you were aspiring towards with this project?
Yes, we had broad parameters in place since it had to ultimately appeal to the Origin One aesthetic, to its customers and market and therefore be contemporary, edgy, pushing the envelope with a mix of basics for everyday use. Most importantly, it had to be something new. With Kaati’s expertise, together we created an all new mix of never done before qualities and textures. For us, the basic call was to create something different from what exists already.
Lastly, what was your major takeaway from the project?
The collaboration came with a fascinating learning curve and has set a new meaning to how two people or brands can come together, be Indian, use traditional wisdom, and yet create something that’s fabulously contemporary, use the best materials and still find space in the affordable luxury segment, push the envelope with design, construction and aesthetic and create something that suits the everyday. India is rich with stories and we hope to have created a new one that’s worth telling.
Get your hands on the collection here.
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