Founder, Chanakya International
An artist and aesthete, Vinod Shah established Chanakya International, a textile and embroidery house with a pantheon of 13th-generation ustads (master-artisans) in Mumbai, India. With a commitment to craft excellence and artistic innovation, Chanakya began its journey to combine the finest materials with impeccable handcraftsmanship.
Director, Chanakya International & Partner, JADE
Since 1998, Nehal Shah spearheads operations at Chanakya International.
Artistic Director of Chanakya International & Chanakya School of Craft
Since 1998, Karishma Swali has led Chanakya International, a global textile house with a four-decade history in the preservation, revival and conservation of India’s intangible cultural heritage. Across her 25-year career, which includes stints at international luxury houses, Karishma Swali has worked towards bringing India’s diverse craft traditions to the forefront. Since 2020, Karishma Swali has collaborated with noted contemporary artists such as Judy Chicago, Eva Jospin, Manu Parekh, Madhvi Parekh, Olesia Trofymenko, Mickalene Thomas, and Marta Roberti.
In March 2023, the 27-year partnership between Karishma Swali and Maria Grazia Chiuri resulted in the Fall 2023 couture show in Mumbai and the Toran, a 46-foot community-based art installation at the Gateway of India. In addition to her role at Chanakya, Karishma co-founded the luxury Indian bridal brand - Jade, with Monica Shah as well as the contemporary line, moonray, with her daughter Avantika Swali. Karishma was the recipient of the 2022 Grazia Millennial Award for Contemporary Craftsmanship, named one of the top 10 leaders in the fashion industry by CEO Insights (2021), recognized as a Cultural Ambassador by Asia Society India Centre and has been a member of the BoF500 since 2022. In June 2023, she was invited by President Joe Biden to attend the Washington State Dinner held in honour of India’s Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi.
The driving force of
Chanakya are its people
A team of 50 designers and merchandisers meticulously transmit the client’s vision in an elemental form by collaborating with the artisans. Our team of master-artisans, some in the 13th generation of their trade, posess exemplary, innovative designs to their names. Encouraged to constantly explore the contemporary, the artisans have also received intensive training from experienced Italian technicians. Their inherent flair and talents are matched with an education in techniques and an understanding of timelines, delivery standards as well as international-quality benchmarks. Fashion demands attention and so, our Italian and American Marketing teams work closely and tirelessly with clients and the headquarters to achieve perfection.
Chanakya houses a remarkable lineage of 13th generation master-artisans, offering clients exceptional surface ornamentation that embodies a fusion of their distinctive style and the inherent talent of our artisans. Our Ateliers and Quality Management Systems are awared with prestigious certifications such as
QEC ISO 9001:2008, SEDEX (Social Compliance Certification)
and GC Mark (Global Compliance Mark)
With a team of over 400 in-house expert artisans and twenty captive ateliers, each accommodating 50 to 70 artisans, we maintain seamless production cycles.
Within our establishment, one segment is equipped to produce 10,000 finished garments monthly, showcasing our capacity to handle diverse techniques and high volumes.
We take pride in delivering high-quality couture promptly, leveraging our efficient infrastructure and dynamic tracking mechanism to keep clients informed about their orders. Our quality control and assurance audit teams rigorously test and analyze raw materials to meet REACH norms. Additionally, we employ an effective ERP system and the latest customized software to monitor and optimize production, including specialized embroidery requirements and garment-grading mechanisms.