On my last day in Kathmandu a few weeks ago I stumbled across JAVANA WORKSHOP in Bakhundol, after a long goodbye-lunch with dear friends and with no more money in my pocket (how very unfortunate!) to splurge on the absolutely lovely silver jewellery, so tastefully displayed that it was a total joy to my eyes.
I got to talking to Balkrishna Asharpati, modern silversmith in an old family tradition, and learnt about the nice story of how this company came into being. A company he is running jointly with his lovely business partner Hazel Birchall, originally from England and presently living in Thailand.
JAVANA: a great partnership
It was Hazel, then living with her Dutch husband and family in Kathmandu on one of his many posts, who sought out Balkrishna for silversmithing lessons. At that time she was already keeping herself busy with the sales of a small collection of handmade jewellery, then from Java. Getting to know each other and learning more about each others special strengths eventually led to the creation of a joint business, “Javana Jewellery”. And now, in 2017, we are many years and three shops further (plus a thriving internet sales platform!
Three times JAVANA: Bakhundole, Baber Mahal Revisited, and Dokkum/Holland
So most recently they re-opened their shop in Baber Mahal Revisited (check also my post here), after having stopped there for a few years due to earthquake damages. At an absolutely stunning upstairs location in the delightful complex with lots of fine shops, restaurants, and small boutique hotels, the silver collection is presented in an exquisite ambiente:
But also in Holland you can enjoy the Javana collection in a charming shop in the pretty little city of Dokkum, in the North of the country, near Groningen. In August of 2014 “Huis of Javana” was opened and has since successfully sold the collection of silver gems of all different price classes.
The JAVANA COLLECTION
… and here are some examples of the fine work Balkrishna (and his brother Bishnu) create with Hazel’s unique and elegant design. She stresses that “all the beautiful gemstones of the most lovely colors are of highest quality and they are individually chosen for every design piece.” From the hammering of the massive block of silver to the final beautiful produced piece, every single step is carefully done by hand with great precision and love for detail.
Find out more about JAVANA and the collection on their website: http://www.javanajewellery.com/