Khatamkari literally means decorating objects’ surfaces with small pieces like tiles and it is one of the Persian arts wherein the surface of wooden or metallic articles is decorated with pieces of wood, bone and metal cut in a variety of shapes and designs.


This art, to some extent, has existed in Iran from long ago. Inlaid articles in the Safavid era took on a special significance, as artists used this art on doors, windows, mirror frames, Qur’an boxes, pen and pen holders, lanterns and tombs.


Also, in some royal buildings, doors and various items have been inlaid. The inlaid-ornamented rooms in Sa’dabad and Marble Palace in Tehran are among masterpieces of this art.


Incorporating techniques from China and improving it with Persian know-how, this craft existed for more than 700 years and is still practiced in Shiraz and Isfahan.

How to do it

Gold, silver and etc. can be used for collector coins. These rods are first assembled into triangular beams with geometric patterns, and then these are assembled again and glued into bundles in a strict order to form a cylinder of about 70cm, whose edge shows the unity of the base of the final decoration.


These cylinders are then sheared in shorter cylinders, then compressed and dried between two wooden plates, before undergoing a final cut that makes slices of about 1 mm in thickness. The latter are then ready to be plated and glued on the support object to be decorated before being lacquered. They can be preheated to soften them, if the object is curved, so that they can perfectly marry the curves. The decorated objects are: boxes, chess or backgammon, frames, or even musical instruments.


The Khatam technique can also be applied to the famous Persian miniatures, thus creating true works of art.


Handicrafts of Isfahan – Part 2

In the first part, we reviewed 5 items of Isfahan handicrafts. In the following, there are other items from Isfahan Handicrafts.

6. Moaragh

The word “Moaragh” actually means something tidy, the art of making art is the laying of colorful and valuable wood, such as ivory, oysters, and metal, to achieve the desired design.

Wood art mosaic can be one of the most beautiful and finest wood arts and crafts in Iran. The Isfahan art scene in Iran has a special place, the best and most diverse works of the world about this art to the Iranians. In fact, this art is really about making different kinds of different types of different colors and patterns.

7. Ghalamkari

Ghalamkari is derived from the Persian words ghalam (pen) and kari (craftsmanship), meaning drawing with a pen. This is a type of hand-painted or wooden block-printed cotton textile, using natural dyes. It is an old craft that has been used as a conduit for their artistic creativity by the Iranian graphic designers, since the antiquity.

8. Firoozeh Koobi

Firoozeh Koobi (Turquoise) is one of the most popular arts in Isfahan. In this art, small pieces of turquoise appear on the surface of dishes, jewelry and decorative objects. This works on copper, brass, silver and bronze surfaces.

9. Carpet Weaving

Carpets are one of the first artistic handicrafts which have been woven since ancient times in Persia. Iranian Carpets have always been famous all over the world. Almost all international tourists buy even a small Iranian carpet during their trips in Iran. During the Safavid era, Isfahan was considered one of the main centers of carpet weaving in Iran and there were a lot of workshops. Today, the city of Meyme is one of the important centers for producing handmade carpets in Isfahan province.

10. Pottery and Ceramics

Pottery is the process of forming vessels and other objects with clay and other ceramic materials, which are fired to give them a hard, durable form. This art is considered in the city of Isfahan, as well as in the cities of Natanz and Shahreza

11. Miniature

Miniature is a kind of painting that has long existed in Iran. This type of painting can be sold as decorative panels or used in the architecture to decorate the walls.

Handicrafts of Isfahan – Part 1

The handicrafts of Isfahan represent the industry and art of the ancestors and displays of the taste and art of the people of Isfahan, which has been attracting domestic and foreign tourists over the years.