Published: 25th October 2019
From bangles to lampshades, this 62-yr-old from Coimbatore can make anything out of coconut shells
Viswanathan T from Coimbatore makes sculptures, lampshades, jewellry and much more which are exclusively made using coconut shells
Growing up, all I've seen people do with coconut shells is throw them away. So it was quite a surprise when I met Viswanathan T from Coimbatore, a sexagenarian who makes super cool stuff with just coconut shells.
From sculptures, bangles, pendants, chains, cutlery, and flower vases to pen stands, lanterns and fridge magnets, Viswanathan can make anything with coconut shells and believes that it's the best raw material.
Lampshades made using coconut shells
Scrolling through Viswanathan's Instagram handle, Thennai_crafts, I wondered how he managed to make these exciting shapes. "I use an axo blade to cut the coconut shells in the required shape. It is a difficult process as it consumes time and requires patience and concentration," explains the 62 years old.
Viswanathan selects the raw material from the market and spends about ten to twelve hours per day in creating these unique art forms. "The shapes of coconut shells are varied. You must be clever enough to choose ones that resemble your end product," says the former goldsmith.
Products of Thennai_crafts are available in Amazon
Coming from a family of sculptors and being a former goldsmith, making sculptures from coconut shells was a piece of cake for Viswanathan. "I use a single coconut shell to carve the face of my sculpture. For each part of the sculpture, the coconut must be cut accordingly. This requires visualisation and practice," he explains.
He hopes to exhibit his art work in its raw form. "When you paint it, it tends to lose its natural look, and I don't like to mess it up. This is the reason why my products stand out in the market," he gushes.
Sculpture of Abdul Kalam made using coconut shells
No doubt about that. Viswanathan's products are purchased by in big numbers through Amazon and social media sites like Instagram. "There are customers who love wearing jewels made from coconut shells as they are weightless and unique. I don't use any chemical colouring. I just try to enhance the natural colour with a little polishing. People should learn to appreciate nature as it is," he concludes.