Attractive stationery is the key to almost everybody’s heart — be it for the sake of motivation, or just to liven up the boring wooden desks in our offices or homes. In a world that is abundant with mass production, products born out of true inspiration and idiosyncrasy are unmatched. Homegrown brands and startups have emerged as the champions of this creativity we crave, offering a refreshing departure from the ordinary. With a commitment to craftsmanship and a touch of cultural essence, these five brands have carved a niche for themselves in the consumption market of stationery, bringing forth a collection that not only resonates with individuality but also motivates us to work at our desks every day.
The Black Canvas
Founded by Khyati Dodhia, artist and photographer, The Black Canvas specialises in durable and hand-crafted leather products. With an education in advertising, significant experience in the field of photography, and a deep preoccupation with art and design, Khyati started The Black Canvas while wanting nothing more than to create a leather journal that would be long-lasting and unique. From one journal, The Black Canvas has transformed into a homegrown business, and a must for travel lovers. With similar leather-bound journals and diaries to notebook and pen cases on the catalogue, Khyati Dodhia’s passion project offers one-of-a-kind stationery and lifestyle products. Manufactured and designed in Mumbai by talented craftsmen from Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, these products are created sustainably, with love.
The Black Canvas
Pink Artisans, co-founded by Arpita and Arpit Jagnani, is a venture that merges art and technology to create exquisitely handcrafted products. Based in the vibrant Pink City, Jaipur, this brand draws inspiration from local artisans and their traditional techniques, such as hand-marbling, block-printing, and Karigari craft, and embeds them into the contemporary. The name of the brand, Pink Artisans, pays homage to the skilled craftsmen of Jaipur and honours them for their unwavering contribution to the country’s cultural landscape. Their products offer an array of stationery items, including journals and notebooks, as well as handcrafted utilitarian items like storage boxes, gift trays, marbled jars, and gift-wrapping paper. Pink Artisans is also meticulously committed to environmental consciousness. All their products are handcrafted using handmade cotton paper, aligning them with eco-friendly practices.
The Bodhi Journal
Founded in 2020 by duo Bhakti and Richa, The Bodhi Journal started as an Instagram page that was meant to be a blog to share their love for journaling, in a time that was saturated with the stress and anxiety of being amid a worldwide pandemic. Therefore ‘The Bodhi Journal,’ is inspired by the Bodhi tree, which refers to the tree of awakening- a large and ancient sacred fig tree located in Bodh Gaya, India. Gautum Buddha is said to have attained enlightenment under this very tree. ‘Bodhi’ (Sanskrit, Pāli), from the verbal root Budd, “to awake”, and “to understand” reflects the brand’s primary objective of self-exploration and seeking peace in the process of art and journaling.
Bhakti and Richa’s blog gradually grew into a business selling the A to Z of journaling and stationery supplies. “For us, journaling symbolises a meditative state of mind, which is calming and helps us practice mindfulness. It is a therapeutic process that helps us create something from bits and pieces,” they add.
The Bodhi Journal
The Paper Company India
The founders of The Paper Company gave life to this brand after the realization that all of us have become stationery collectors and often feel hesitant to use the notebooks and thank you cards that we collect from our travels abroad. To pacify our fear of “running out,” and enable the Indian consumer market to fill their brimming cupboards with products from all around the world, The Paper Company focuses on handpicking the most popular and luxurious paper products and bringing them to Indian shores. This Indian stationery boutique offers knick-knacks that suit the desires of all kinds of stationery lovers, users, and hoarders — every kind of notebook and journal that we drool over online is now brought to our doorsteps thanks to The Paper Company.
The Paper Company
From the quiet corners of personal reflection to the bustling world of creative entrepreneurship, the story of Patrika unfolds like a penned journal entry. “Patrika is not just a stationery brand; it’s a narrative of daring dreams and heartfelt creativity,” says Mansha Kaur Anand, the founder of Patrika. A constant companion through her formative years was a notebook, a sanctuary for her thoughts and dreams. After dabbling her hand at numerous ventures and startups, Mansha founded Patrika during the Global Pandemic, and Patrika became her passion. Each product, be it a journal, notebook, or planner, is imbued with the essence of India’s rich culture and wildlife. Much as the name suggests, Patrika honours the traditional and often overlooked elements of our daily lives. The brand preaches slow living and celebrates personal growth and self-love through the timeless art of writing.
Words Muskan Kaur