Kohima: In a first, homegrown jewellery brands from the state came together to exhibit and sell their creations at ‘Nagaland First Handmade Jewellery Exhibition 2019’ held at Japfü Hotel in Kohima on Friday.
Powered by Task Force for Music and Arts (TaFMA) in collaboration with Made in Nagaland Jewellery Brands, the exhibition was held to “support local”. Under the theme celebrating craftsmanship, the exhibition was presented by ‘PIPO By Thung Ezung’, a jewellery brand owned by 18-year-old Thungchibemo Ezung.
Speaking with EastMojo, Ezung, a Class XI student of Dainty Buds School in Kohima, said that his brand which was established in 2016 now caters to international clients, reaching as far as the United Kingdom.
Along with ‘Pipo’, seven Jewellery brands namely Zaben, Inla’s Genesis, Lusano Sophie, Lorenzas, Münye designs, Myrtle, and Aben exhibited their products.
“Nagaland is flooded with jewellery designers and home grown brands. So I created this platform to promote and uplift Naga jewellery designers and also come together as one under the Naga jewellery designers,” Ezung said when asked about brainstorming an exhibition.
On the question of professionally choosing jewellery making as a young boy, Ezung said, “As a Naga, we have this perspective of looking things in separating works between man and woman. I want to also break the barrier from this mindset, as a Naga—that is my vision and my inspiration. And I am also a fashion enthusiast.”
Project Manager of Made in Nagaland, Youth Net, Imtisangla Jamir, who graced the occasion as the chief guest said that ornaments and jewelleries were very sacred to the Nagas as it displayed social taboo, class distinction and achievements in ancient times.
On the present commercial trend in the state, she said, “The biggest challenge we face is the consistency of the product where we fail to meet the demand in terms of quantity and services due to negligence, storage problem and quality packaging.”
Münye Handmade Nagaland’s owner Abe Veswuh took the stage during a short ceremony held during the exhibition to share her story. Abe, a self-taught jewellery designer, recounted how she began jewellery making – starting off with the love of collecting them to repairing them. She expressed that her one-year-old brand has made her come to a realisation that each jewellery has a story to tell and how it describes various personalities.
Mercy Tetseo, on behalf of the Tetseo sisters, expressed the need for entrepreneurs to connect and network with people. She also urged the jewellery designers to maintain consistency and sustainability while crafting.
Although making the exhibition an annual affair is not confirmed, Ezung said “Looking into this situation and circumstances, we might also come up with another event —maybe not an exhibition but come up with a creative idea for it too”.