The papier mache technique of using paper pulp for making decorative objects was first adopted in Kashmir in the 15th century by King Zain-ul-Abidin.
Paper mache is one of the most beautiful handicrafts of Kashmir. The construction of paper mache products has two essential processes which involves making of the object and cleaning of forest pine Kaylier (one of the pine variety). It is believed that the craft has traveled from Iran to Kashsmir and was introduced by King Zainul Abidin. Iranian name of the craft is Kari Qalamdane which means a pen stand.
There are a variety of items prepared by the craftsmen of Kashmir which have beautiful designs and colours and include pen stands, coasters, jewellery boxes, flower vases, lamp shades, trays, photo frames and decorative bowls";" all of which have demand out side the country too. Some of the items have pure silver or gold dust sprinkled onto them to increase their beauty. Traditionally, wood based paper mache is coated with a skinny stratum of stretched sheep skin which is well fitted for colouring pigments. The objects generally have dark background and suitable colours are black, green, blue and white. Designing on these objects requires skilled hands as the designing is very intricate.