The biannual makers market event held in Chennai aka Madras, dedicated to handmade & design by independent talent, artisanal & homegrown labels.
Meet Neha Murthy, designer and founder of Pachisi a design studio in Chennai that creates ancient board games on fabric. We chat up with Neha about her craft venture, products and new line up. Here’s her story.
A bit about yourself. How would you describe what you do; and how long have you been making and creating?
I am Neha, founder of Pachisi. Pachisi is a brand that creates ancient board games on fabric. I started this venture nearly two years back with an aim to revive old games and encourage people to play them.
Pachisi was actually my final year project in college. It was during this period that I realised that many people were not aware of old Indian games. Post college, I took this up as a full-time job to design and develop board games on fabric that are visually attractive. Fabric games have their own charm. They are longlasting, light and easy to carry while travelling. All games are embroidered and/or screen-printed. Over these two years, Pachisi has re-created not just Indian games but also other ancient games from across the world.
Why is making important to you?
There is so much joy and satisfaction to see an end product of your design. I love every bit of what I do at Pachisi, right from designing and developing the product to packaging them.
Tell us about your recent works and your proposed showcase at the By Hand, From The Heart.
I’ve started exploring ancient games from across the world. At BHFTH, you will get to see a few of them. Ancient Indian games such as Goats and Tigers, Dayakattam, Chauka Bara and few other games will also be showcased. Apart from that, you will also get to see wooden game box – hand painted and decoupage.
What is your personal favorite pick at Pachisi right now? And why?
Senet. It is an ancient Egyptian game. This is an interesting strategy game and I haven’t played anything like this before. The game is played with cowrie shells. The game is screen printed on fabric.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve gotten along the way in building your business?
It is from one of my teachers. She said “Don’t give this up. Go ahead and make this project work”. She was so persistent that she believed in this idea (board games on fabric) more than I did. I just followed her advice!
Chennai is home. I’ve been brought up here and I love this city. Chennai will always have a sweet spot in my heart. Call it Madras or Chennai; this place has always inspired me. One of the snakes and ladders I designed at Pachisi is inspired from Chennai.
You have participated at an earlier edition at BHFTH; share your experience. Fortunately for me, I started this venture around the same time BHFTH had announced its 15th edition. I grabbed this opportunity and displayed my products in my first event ever and by far been the best one too. I loved the experience. Post this event; I got a lot of orders and retailing opportunities and that is why BHFTH is special to me.
At the Makers Market exhibition in Chennai this October, meet the maker!
By Hand From The Heart: MAKERS MARKET – Festival Special – 19th Edition
Date: Friday – Saturday, 7th – 8th October, 2016
Time: 10:00 a.m – 8:00 p.m
Venue: Crowne Plaza Chennai Adyar Park
Address: 132, T.T.K Road, Alwarpet, Chennai – 600018, Tamil Nadu. India