With the festival season knocking at your door, you often find yourself in a fix that most of us would like to call the last-minute shopping syndrome. The world is in a tizzy and there are advertisements screaming at you, but you don’t know what to pick. Thankfully, there is a way to make your gifts look like you actually put some thought into them rather than scrambled something together due to poor time management.
Frazer and Haws, an English brand best known for its work in silverware has impressed generations with its delicate and eye-catching ornaments for the home. Established in 1869, the brand has served the home and hearth of the likes of Queen Victoria right to Cherie Blair. The loyalty surrounding this brand is undying and many vouch for it as an ideal place to find gifts for your loved ones.
If you fear about its accessibility, there’s nothing to worry about as Frazer and Haws is available in stores in Delhi and Mumbai. If you ask merchants who sell the London brand's products, they reveal that the festival season is probably when their collections are most in demand. Pratik Shah, director, Estaa, which sells Frazer and Haws products says, “What is popular has pretty much not changed over the last decade. People want something that looks large but costs less, which is the perfect gift. There is a large emphasis on presentation and therefore, packaging is the key. So, we decorate the boxes with flowers and fairy lights to create something quite spectacular.” Around 200 craftsmen are employed to make the Frazer and Haws products from pure silver. Right from making the sheets of silver to designing and engraving, the product is created to leave the receiver spellbound.
The spiritual vibe surrounding this time ensures that the top favourites are the idols of deities and other festival-related décor that sells the best. Says Shah, “The top three products have to be our diyas for ₹3,000 and above, idols of the Lord Ganesha for ₹50,000 onwards and in some cases also between ₹8,000 and ₹10,000. Besides this, we also end up getting some corporate orders for customised sterling silver products for companies using their logo between ₹2,000 and ₹2,00,000.”
Some of the idols cost as high as ₹5 lakh. Shah continues, “Currently, the most popular pieces from Frazer and Haws are the ones with semi-precious stone based showpieces. Our favourite is the pink quartz Ganesha. The other bases we use are lapis lazuli, marble and wood.”
Speaking of Estaa’s association with Frazer and Haws, Shah says, “We have been professionally associated with it since Estaa was born five years ago. But our association goes way back to when they had their own store in Bandra and my parents used to take me there.”
Over the years, the product offerings have clearly adapted to the Indian setting and there are now ways to ensure that not only their customers in India, but also the ones settled abroad can be satisfied with their make. Shah explains, “People love our sculptures. Along with terracotta, we are now making some statues with resin. This makes it possible to offer prayers and even apply a tilak on the sculpture without altering the craftsmanship. Some of the products have also become lighter because of this, which has delighted our international clients who can now carry them on their flights without stress.”
Honestly, if you thought it was only the thought that counts, think again. Imagine the twinkle in someone’s eye when you gift them something rare that shines just as bright as the thought behind the gift. Guess you can now wrap up your search for the perfect festive gift.