Crafts make us feel rooted, give us a sense of belonging and connect us with our history. Our ancestors used to create these crafts out of necessity, and now it is the time to preserve them, blend them with modernity and use them in the design practice of modern-day generations. Keeping these points in view Human Resource Development Center and School of Design (Fashion Design and Technology) launched Online Short-Term Course on Integrating Craft Skills in Design Practice.

Dr. Sunaina Ahuja, Professor and Associate Dean, HRDC welcomed the audience from diverse fields like Fashion Design and Interior decoration and the resource persons from Industry and academia. In her welcome address, she placed emphasis on application of learning and focused on significance of traditional craft preservation and importance of projects to hone the designing skills. Mr. Bhaskar Mitra, Dean School of Design (Fashion Design and Technology) oriented the participants with the objectives and highlights of the course. He explained the rationale behind launching the course and expressed hope that the participants would come up with novel ideas on integrating craft skills in design practice.

The program coordinators Mr. Ajay Kumar Sharma, Assistant Professor, HOD, Corporate Outreach Training, HRDC, LPU, Mr. Vinod Bhatia, Assistant  Professor, HOD, Fashion Design, and Ms. Maria G. Keischgens  Associate Professor, HOD Fashion Technology II, School of Design (Fashion Design & Technology), LPU threw the light on the program structure, session flow and evaluation scheme of Short-Term Course on Integrating Craft Skills in Design Practice.

Mr. Gaurav Mandal- Design Consultant, Ms. Pallavi Singh- Design consultant in Craft, Mr. Ambrish Gaur-Assistant Professor, School of Design (Fashion Design and Technology), LPU and Ms. Rajdeep Kaur- Assistant Professor, School of Design (Fashion Design and Technology), LPU were the key facilitators of the course.

Mr.Gaurav Mandal started the first session by familiarizing the participants with the challenges and opportunities of the world of craft design through case studies of Suket Dhir, winner of the International Woolmark prize in 2015-16 in the Menswear category and case study of Priyanka Modi, Founder and creative director of the design powerhouse AMPM. Ms. Pallavi deliberated on incorporation of craft in design practice. she updated the skills of the participants on generation of design ideas and digital documentation techniques,  The resource persons detailed the participants about the various crafts of India and their applications in the modern era. The participants learnt to prepare inspiration boards, concept notes and Mood boards in the design process. Ms. Rajdeep Kaur guided the participants in their group and individual projects. Mr. Ambrish took the students to his journey of his experience of working with artisans and craftsmen of Assam. 

On the fifth day the sessions were graced by guest speakers Mr. Kulwinder Singh Former Senior Assistant Director, Office of Development Commissioner Handicrafts, Ministry of textiles, Govt of India who gave detailed information of different handicrafts of Punjab and Govt Policies and Support to the handicrafts sector and Mr. Rupan Matharu, Shilpguru and artisan of wood inlay craft and Mr. Kamajeet, National Award winner in wood inlay craft spoke about their journey of preserving and promoting of the traditional craft. Another guest speaker Ms. Yashaswi Anand from Hyderabad, a consultant designer to the development commissioner and owner of Gilahari Handicraft took the participants through her journey towards success. On July 27, 2021 Ms. Vibhuti Jain, owner of Textile design studio- Pigment Lane, New Delhi was invited as a guest speaker who shared her expertise of Design Application and extraction of motif.

The participants exhibited their creative talent in their group and individual projects and presented their creations in front of the jury.

The short term course was well appreciated by the participants in terms of its conduct, learning outcomes and handling of queries by the resource person. “I learnt the importance of craft and how we as a designer have the power to revive them and save them from dying”, said Yashaswini Gurung, a promising fashion professional and a participant of short term course.