Mysterious in its creation unequalled in its beauty, the Aranmula Kannadi is a unique object. Exclusive to Aranmula, this mirror is made of metal, not glass! There in lies its uniqueness and its creation, a closely guarded secret, known to any few families, has been handed down from father to son for generations. The metal mirror, a marvel in the annals of metallurgy was in vogue long before the appearance of today silicon synthetic glass mirror was in use in far off Eqypt and Baghdad. And on of the temples at khajuraho portrays a woman looking into a metal mirror while applying her bindi. Archaeological excavations at Harappa have yielded a mirror made copper with a five inch diameter. The Rig veda also mentions the presence of the metal mirror. The ancestors of this craft could have migrated to South India from the Saptha-Sindhu and are descendants of the great masters of the Indus Valley civilization.
Aranmula is a little village in the district of pathanamthitta, Kerala, India, which is well known for its ancient temple dedicated to Lord Krishna as Parthasarathy.
Aranmula Kannadi is:
- Extra ordinary traditional hand made metal mirror, is Famous for bringing prosperity, luck and wealth in to life
- Aranmula Kannadi is famous for its secretive construction method and uniqueness in the make which get Patent protected with a Geographical Indication tag
- It is the only metal mirror available, Unlike Ordinary Glass mirror , Image from Aranmula Kannadi is reflected from upper surface of reflecting material , where in Glass mirror image reflected from bottom layer where mercury is pasted . So real image is only captured in the Aranmula Kannadi.
- Aranmula Kannadi is one among 8 auspicious items included famous astamagalaya set ,which usually used for very auspicious function like marriage
- Aranmula Kannadi is impossible to make a duplicated Item, because of its lesser Price, and its make details only known to few people in one family belong to Aranmula and it is kept as a family secret
- Mysteries in its creation, unequaled in its beauty, the Aranmula Kannadi is a unique object.
- Exclusive to Aranmula this is made of metal, not glass! There in lies its uniqueness and its creation a closely guarded secret. Known to only four families, has been handed down from father to son for generations. Therein lies its mystery
- Aranmula is a little village in the district of Pathanamthitta, which is well known for its ancient temple dedicated to Lord Sree Krishna as Parthasarathy,the colorful snake boat Regatta and the Aranmula Kannadi.
- The British Museum in London has a 45 centimeter tall Aranmula metal mirror in its collection
Aranmula Kannadi is not mass produced and is hand made with all its perfections as how one looks at it? While commercially available glass mirrors reflect an image, because of a silver coating at its rear, Aranmula Metal Mirror is the only mirror which reflects from the front plane. This had its popularity until the advent of the commercially manufactured glass mirrors which proved to be much cheaper. The demand of Aranmula Kannadi grew by bounds only a decade ago especially in foreign countries.
A huge amount of determination, perseverance and patience goes into the making of this enchanting mirror. Mud from the local paddy fields is used for the mould into which the molten alloy mix is poured to cast the mirror and the technique followed is the cire-perdue or the lost wax method of casting. Even with the utmost care, only about 60% of the cast metal mirrors can be salvaged, the rest get damaged in the process of manufacture.
The metal mirror is then polished using well-ground, burnt clay powder mixed with special oil on a jute cloth. To achieve a highly reflective surface, polishing can go on from one to several days. When a satisfactory finish is achieved, the mirror is mounted on various models of artistic brass frames.