Pakistan Onyx Handicrafts: A Unique Blend of Tradition and Culture

by Huda Ayaz
Published: Last Updated on

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Pakistani Onyx Marble is Among the Best in the world

Pakistan has the distinction of being among that handful of countries in the world that have been blessed with numerous minerals and marble varieties. The most famous and exclusive of these precious stone marble is the Onyx; which is predominantly found in the gas cavities of lava. Onyx is quite popular as a decorative stone, and it is utilized in creating any number of indoor as well as outdoor carvings and shapes. Pakistan has a rich history of using onyx as a common gemstone and can be found referenced in many of its historic and cultural folklore where people of old cut onyx and seashells to create beautiful floral as well as geometric designs, which are often reflected in old paintings and historical artifacts.

In fact, the popularity of onyx handicrafts can be found in almost all European civilizations too. The Ancient Romans and Greeks are quite famous for their intricate onyx and general marble handicrafts; oftentimes, entire outdoor monuments and in some cases whole building columns were made out of onyx. The unique semi-transparent nature of onyx makes it an ideal choice for decorative purposes.

Several Onyx Varieties Ensure You Can Find One To Your Liking

Onyx Marble 2Pakistan has been blessed with numerous varieties of onyx, and it is found in the northern areas of the country. The most commonly available form of onyx is the Green Onyx which is really very beautiful, with curly streaks of brown and gold embedded in the stone. The Green Onyx is easily available in most major cities of Pakistan, and can be found in handicraft shops. The Black Onyx is another popular variety which is usually streaked with silver, gold and green. This too can be found in most mainstream markets all over the country. The Golden onyx is a bit rare and expensive as well; it can be found in specialist shops that keep only the premium quality in their stocks.

But this doesn’t mean that there are only 3 varieties of Onyx in Pakistan, there are literally hundreds of different classes which are differentiated on the basis of color, cut as well as weight. The Golden Onyx can be of multiple varieties, ranging from pure gold to a mild yellow and in some cases even a slight brownish tinge. These are all marketed as discreetly separate onyx varieties and are quite a popular export item. Prices can range from anywhere between a few dollars to even exceed thousands in the international market.

It is almost guaranteed that you will find an onyx handicraft to your liking, amidst the thousands of different shapes and colors available; you will definitely find a piece that would look good in your living room or garden. Onyx is used for making a whole assortment of decorative items, ranging from lamps, vases, crockery, jewelry, ash trays, salt lamps, tables, work décor, boxes, fancy animal figures, etc. You can have anything measuring just a few centimeters like fancy figurines for show pieces, or even a full sized bird shower if you want to uplift your garden a little. Onyx can also be used to make tiles and mosaics too if you want your floor and walls lined with it.

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Specialist Onyx Dealers in Pakistan:

There are many onyx specialist dealers available all over Pakistan; you can find hundreds of them in any major capital city. But if its bulk quantity you’re looking for, then it’s probably better to get your onyx directly from the places where it is mined. The areas of NWFP and northern Punjab contain excellent deposits of onyx and the stone can be purchased directly from mining companies at a whole sale rate which is markedly lower than the price you have to pay in the market. For private buyers it is much more convenient to get their onyx from shops that specialize in home décor.

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