The artists from Shantiniketan, Bolpur have pioneered the making of paper knives and over the years several craftsmen are practicing this art form. Today, a number of artisans from Calcutta and surrounding areas have adopted the craft
Papier-mâché items are made by applying a layer of recycled paper and pressing it against a wooden module. Soak the used paper in water for about 10 to 15 days and grind it with a hammer. The gum is completely mixed with this slurry. After drying, the mold is separated and the object is removed. This object is in raw form, finished, polished and colored.
The craft of papermâché originated in Persia (Iran) and was known as "kar-i-kalamdan" (pen holder). It is said that the Mughal emperors of the 15th and 16th centuries were impressed with this unique art form and favored it in India. The paperâché craft flourished in India during the reign of the Mughal rulers. However, there are no records of the popularity or other details of this craft during the Mughal period, as no paper crafts were discovered.