Wood carving has an ancient tradition in India. Beautiful woodwork is done on the occasion of marriages and sacred thread ceremonies.
The most imposing of such work is undoubtedly inspired by architectural conceptions; such as the old wooden temples of Gujarat and Kathiawar, the imposing wooden rathas or temple cars of South India and the architectural carvings of the old palaces of Rajputana. The Brihat Sanhita and works on the Shilpa Shastras give detailed instructions on woodcraft and the making of furniture.
Many handsome pieces of furniture, such as seats, thrones and bedsteads of which there are many varieties are shown in early sculpture and painting. The wood carving of Gujarat, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu stand out for their characteristic designs, richness of ornamentation, refinement and skill in execution.