Meet Manvee, Terra Klay

Terra Klay introduces fair trade handmade artisans products to wider audience here in the United States who understand the value of traditional craftsmanship and want to engage in the stories of handmade. Connecting traditional beauty with the modern world.It is also built on the idea that every product has a story and if you listen closely enough, it will tell you of the hands that held and crafted it, with a soul and love. We strongly believe that business can make a difference and create social change.

What do you love about your business and industry?

Handmade artisan crafts is the second largest factor in raising decent wages and create meaningful job opportunities in developing countries. It gives respect to the maker who take pride in their cultural identity.

Tell us what inspires you.

Meeting and learning from makers of products who have a passion to share their craft. Whether it is a far away artisans or a crafter right here in Chicago, knowing and understanding their artistic journey aways inspires me.

What advice do you have for other creatives and entrepreneurs?

Let passion lead you but not blind you.

What is something surprising about you?

I come across pretty friendly and talkative but I am kind of an introvert.

Tell us about your process for making and creating.

Two rocks are crushed to a powder and mixed with water to form a clay-like consistency. Crafted without the use of a potter’s wheel, Terra Klay pottery is molded and created by hand and bamboo tools. Once the shaped clay has dried and is hard enough, it is taken to an open bonfire and heated for 5 to 7 hours at temperatures over 900-1000 degrees centigrade. The signature black of the pottery is a result of smoke stains while firing. As a finishing touch, the pottery’s soft black color is finished by rubbing the piece with a leaf known as ‘machee’, giving it a unique and almost metallic shine when still hot. Terra Klay's collection reflects its respect for nature, culture and quality while retaining its timeless aesthetic. All Terra Klay earthenware is lead free and food safe.

What is the best advice you've ever been given and how has it shaped your business?

There are 3 P's in business - People, Product and Process in order for a company to succeed. I am working on it to make sure that as a startup we are keeping close eyes on all 3.

Was Terra Klay mentioned at Davos?

I thought I'd share that Terra Klay made it into a small nook at World Economic Forum. Among other topics discussed, one of the themes was around how digital technologies empower underserved areas of our society. TCS Digital Empowers, a strategic partner to the World Economic Forum, raises awareness of the power of digital technology in solving some of the world’s most pressing challenges – everything from healthcare and education through to agriculture and equality issues. I am so happy to share that Terra Klay, was showcased on how technology can increase access and provide support to remote communities around the world.  You can view the full post here -

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kendra chaplin