Lacquer Miniature Toys are some of the most expensive products in the market today. The demand for Lacquer Miniature Toys is ever increasing. Children today like Toys that are attractive and parents, Toys that are safe, durable and inexpensive. India is renowned for inexpensive Lacquer Miniature Toys- a true delight for kids, anywhere in the world.
Lacquered Miniature Toys are preferred over plastic by some as they are safer. Children like them for their uniqueness and attractiveness. The vibrant colors are much better than the unattractive finishes of plastic toys.
Chennapatna, 65 Kms from Bengaluru- in Karnataka is the central hub for Lacquer Miniature Toys in India. The Lacquer Miniature Toys and other artifacts produced here are made up of mostly of hale wood or yellow teak wood. Its softness, white color and easy availability make it ideal for the turning and lacquering process. The wood is well seasoned first, before being shaped on the lathe. Originally a manual lathe called pattari was used and still is, by some artisans. But most of them prefer to use lathe for basic shapes and apply the lacquer decoration by hand, with shellac and aniline colors. Colored lacquer comes in thin strips, which are pressed over the articles as the lathe revolves and the heat thus generated melts the lac. Later, coconut oil and the screw pine leaf give a brilliant shine to the piece.
Among the Lacquer Miniature Toys made at Chennapatna, complete sets of kitchenware, including items found in Indian households are a specialty item. Brightly colored rolling pins, often multi- hued, with different, with different colors running through in circular bands are a part of the original set of wooden lacquer ware products from Chennapatna. The range of Lacquer Miniature Toys however, has expanded remarkably: dolls, musical instruments, spinning tops, train sets, carts, baby rattles, egg holders, and an array of animal and bird shapes are common.
The influx of Toys from all over the world has seriously challenged the visibility of traditional Indian Lacquer Miniature Toys, especially in urban India. However, wooden Lacquer Miniature Toys- like those from Chennapatna- are special, if not unique on several accounts: for the safety value of the materials used, for their link with objects and activities that are embedded in cultural memory and reality of the subcontinent, for their cost effectiveness and lastly, for their breathtakingly tantalizing display- a true delight to young eyes.