“Bengaluru exposed me to temple jewellery . The laidback city allows you to work at your pace to create works of art,“ said Gupta, who dishes out handcrafted jewellery at her by-appointment boutique on St Marks Road called Bespoke Vintage Jewels. Her speciality: Reversible designs and fusion designs that combine south Indian elements with Nizam heritage.
Another city-based jewellery designer, Deepti Sudhindra, has caught the eyes of corporate bigwigs, expatriates and international clients in New York, Japan and Germany . Her store was featured in `Bangalore’s Secrets’ in the November issue of The Lonely Planet, bringing tourists to her Lavelle Road store. Her label, `The Jewelry Project’, uses age-old `karimnagar’ filigree technique, Hampi temple motifs, Rajashthan’s mythical stories and Warli craft in gold, silver and natural gemstones.
Bengaluru is also home to designer Shruti Chajjer Ranka whose label ShrutiSushma Fine Jewellery skyrocketed to fame when Bollywood actor Sonam Kapoor started following it on Instagram.
Delhi-based Bollywood singer Amrita Kak Jhunjhunwala is a client. “I have bought a ring and diamond solitaires from them.The fact that one goes out of the way to buy precious jewellery from another city speaks a lot about the design and the work they do,“ said Jhunjhunwala.
Ranka attributes the success of Bengaluru designers also to price logistics. “In Delhi and Mumbai, the cost goes up dramatically -karigar payments, buying gemstones to infrastructure. Bengaluru is more affordable.“ Shipra Roy , assistant professor at N I F T B a n g a l o re, s ay s Bengaluru has traditionally been noticed for its design. “The city with Titan and Tanishq has been a design creator’s destination. Jewellery brand Carbon was based here,“ she said. “Back in late ’90s, they redefined the way we perceived jewellery . The market was earlier dependent upon family jewellers with focus on investment and resale value. With Tanishq and Carbon, people started buying jewellery to look good and appropriate to occasion.“
Roy finds Bengaluru culturally and academically rooted despite being cosmopolitan, resulting in the creation of new-age boutiques and designers. “People from across India have made Bengaluru their home. A complex consumer psyche has emerged.“