The Handicrafts in the district of Keonjhar were in a manner acknowledged as an important part of rich cultural heritage of not only of this region but also attracts the international and national eyes. The cultural outlook of handicrafts touch the mind and heart of the people for its excellent cultural heritage and beauty. Many rural artisans have been doing it as their profession and contribution to the economic growth of this State. The Handicrafts of late but partially submerged under the rising process of modern industrialisation with its high mechanisation and lost their basic role in the over all prospective. Care is taken to protect the culture and design of the Handicrafts through upgrading the skills, creating opportunities of market and attracting the visitors and tourists, so that the culture of Orissa particularly of Keonjhar district is well spread across the Globe.
Terracotta products of Ghatagaon block are famous in the states of Odisha, Jharkhand and Bihar. More than 100 families of Ghatagaon block are producing terracotta products and Terracotta jewelry items. The products are being appreciated by the people of all over the country. The artisans prepare the items and figures in clay and then allow them to dry and then put to fire in kiln. These products are the polished with specific touch and colors. The skill up gradation and design development have been provided to the artisans by NABARD.
It is an old age traditional activities of Keonjhar district. The environment condition of the district evokes pleasure for the district for the rural artisans to involve themselves into stone carving activities for their livelihood. For the interest of artisans of the age old art and craft of Odisha is alive. About five hundred rural artisans of villages Dhakotha, Alati and Musuan are involved in the activities and making images, statues and other house decorative items. The stone carving products are very much appreciated inside and out side of the country. The skill up gradation and design development have been provided to the artisans by NABARD.
Applique activities in operation in Ghasipura block of Keonjhar district. The member of five SHGs are involved in making appliqué products. The appliqué products have been sent to exhibition/ meals held inside and out side of the state. The popularity of the products are increasing day to day like appliqué products of Pipili. The appliqué products like umbrella, bag, money purse, mobile covers etc. are appreciated by general mass. Skill training has been provided to the members of the SHGs through DRDA/ DIC Keonjhar for their skill and design development. Looking to its demand more and more SHG members are attracted applique as a activity for their livelihood.
Bamboo craft is prevailing in all the 13 blocks of the districts. As forests of Keonjhar is especially rich in various species of Bamboo. Mainly this craft is mainly adopted by some primitive tribes. At present Bamboo craft activities is developed for producing various utility cum house decorative items. DIC, Keonjhar and NABARD has under taken a series of activities for design promotion and skill development of artisans. Coiled basket, Plaites, basketry, chequared varieties are the major traditional skill making product like basket, winnows, hand fan, bamboo mat screen etc.
Paper machie is an unique product of Odisha. The product is being made out of worst paper by adding some powders, gum and colors. The unusual products are being made in Anandapur block of Keonjhar district. Various type of decorative items is being made like flower pot, statue, image, pen stand, paper weight etc. The uniqueness of the products increases appreciation and demands in urban India. Looking into the unique opportunity the three villages of Anandapur block has taken the activity as their livelihood.
In Hatadihi block of Keonjhar district about 200 families are engaged in making jute products like jute carpet, jute mate and various type of fancy items. They were making the jute products in the traditional way, but in the mean while the looms have been supplied and imparted training to develop the technology for design development. The products are being sent to different parts of Odisha as well as country for sale.