Launched in 2015, Kolhart combines the essence of craftsmanship with cultural heritage, creating Kolhapuri’s and Khussas that are made to carry you and your style effortlessly. Our leather footwear range was idealized with today’s modern women in mind for whom fashion is all about ease, comfort, and minimalist designs.
The term ‘Kolhart’ came into being to redefine the traditional ‘Pietaan’. Kolhapuri’s have a long and rich history, going from being the common man’s footwear to becoming the shoes of Mughal royalty, to being in vogue year after year at fashion shows, weddings, and the halls of colleges and universities. While they’ve always been around, there wasn’t really a singular brand that was catering to the working women of the 21st century, looking for a comfortable-soled shoe that didn’t need to be broken in before becoming wearable.
Image: Black and red embriodered chappal
Image Description: Chappal with black base, black straps, and red and black embroidery in a criss-cross pattern
Established in 1977 by Noorjehan Begum, Koel has always promoted the revival of hand-loom weaving and block-printing. Their design philosophy of bringing back the traditional designs of our culture and heritage has helped thousands of artisans and skilled workers to return to their craft. When Noorjehan Begum first witnessed artisans using natural dyes for block printing, she became enraptured with the craft and decided to pursue it as a passion. Learning everything she could, she put up her first exhibition the next year, and from then on, Koel has kept their standard for using indigenous and renewable resources high.
Using natural dyes from roots and barks, flowers, and leaves, along with hand-spun threads and hand-woven cloth, the look and feel of a Koel piece are unlike any other. Taking on the earthy hues of their natural dyes, every item of clothing links you back to nature, with a soft, luxurious texture.
Image: Sea green mules
Image Description: Sea green mutes with black base and a black strap running along the front, with arrow-shaped embroidery
As two separate organizations working to save and revive our cultural craftsmanship, it was only a matter of time before Kolhart and Koel came together to work on something.
With the support of Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF), Kolhart and Koel joined hands to celebrate the beautiful art of Baloch embroidery, which is rich in intricate and delicate designs and stitches, which complements their tribal and nomadic lifestyle.
Image: Green Peshawari sandals
Image Description: Dark green Peshawari-style sandals with red, yellow and green embroidery
Stitched with silk threads on cow leather, Baloch embroidery is a time-consuming and difficult task, not meant for anyone to take on as a DIY project, but only learned through years of effort and skillsmanship.
Termed ‘The Baloch Handicraft Project’, Kolhart and Koel worked with local women from Hazara and Sibi to help revive the dying craft, bringing it into the urban market for the modern woman who is culturally conscious. With over 6 months put into the project, we are proud to present our brand new hand-made collection of leather footwear made in collaboration with the local female artisans and Koel, creating employment opportunities for the women of Balochistan along with reviving a piece of our cultural heritage to ensure that it is not lost to time.