Meet Ayesha Qureshi, a resin artist from Uttar Pradesh’s Meerut

Resin Wall clock with sand of Badar and key chain with kiswah

Nikhat Fatima /

Ayesha, 31, a native of Uttar Pradesh’s Meerut town was born with a passion for drawing and painting and displayed it from the time she was in school. However, she initially did not regard her God-given gift as exceptional and concentrated on her education.

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One day, while browsing the internet, she came across a video on resin art and was instantly fascinated by it. She began to watch additional videos from experts from the United States and the United Kingdom. As she was thinking of trying this craft, her younger sister Alisha Qureshi sent her a video clip of a Rehal, an X-shaped, foldable book rest for the Qur’an made of resin that she wished to purchase.  

How it began

Ayesha decided to create the rehal and give it to her sister, asking her to put her order on hold. She ordered the supplies and tried to make the rehal. ” Resin art is not only expensive but also requires a lot of meticulous work like keeping a constant vigil on the finished work to keep it dust and insect-free while it is drying, ensuring no bubbles are formed, no wrinkles are formed. It takes a lot of patience,” remarked Ayesha, recounting her journey from homemaker to highly sought-after resin and calligraphy artist/businesswoman. 

Ayesha completed the Rehal by following the step-by-step instructions and surprised her sister. Encouraged by her family, Ayesha attempted to make additional items. Calligraphy was easy for her because of her natural talent for imitating any art form, and she was a self-taught calligraphy artist. With her new pastime, she began creating resin frames with calligraphy of Quranic ayats, bookmarks, key chains, 99 names of Allah, trays, and other souvenirs. 

Ayesha Qureshi

Ayesha considers a wall clock and a key chain to be her best works since she put sand from Badar (the site of the first Islamic battle) in the wall clock for a customer in Bangalore and traces of Kiswah (the cloth covering the Kaaba) in the key chain.

As she continued to create new goods, her expenses increased, and after investing thousands of rupees, she needed to find a way to market her merchandise.  

Initial hurdles

Fortunately for Ayesha, her connections in the Dawah group (an evangelical group) were invaluable. And, using the Dawah platform, she shared photographs of her final craft with almost 3600 people from all around the world. People appreciated her art, and she began to receive inquiries, followed by orders. Ayesha began purchasing resin in bulk.

But it wasn’t simple because she was inexperienced, and one manufacturer gave her substandard resin. Ayesha couldn’t notice the difference and set about crafting her work, only to discover that it wouldn’t set and she couldn’t form it into the desired shape. “Those days when all of my work turned out to be defective, I was upset and wanted to give up. But my husband gave me strength. He not only encouraged me but also invested again in ordering the raw ingredients – resin, pigmentation, mould, and so on,” Ayesha explained. 

Resin wall frame with 99 names of Allah

Success at last

90% of her clients are from the Dawah group, and Ayesha feels privileged that the platform she joined to undertake deen (religious) work has now become her source of income. And it is because of their patronage that she can now call herself a businesswoman. Ayesha has a website and an Instagram page where she markets her products.

Her home is her workshop. She leads online classes for girls and women, encouraging them to start their own businesses. She also takes free calligraphy classes twice a week via her WhatsApp group. And girls from all over the world have taken her calligraphy course, where she teaches them how to write the names of Allah. 

Ayesha’s support system

Ayesha attributed her success to her husband, who became her pillar of strength. 

Her husband, Mohammad Rashid Qureshi, says, “Ayesha is incredibly skilled and strikes the perfect balance between her home and her artwork. I am fortunate to have her in my life. I hope she has more success”.

She also appreciates the ongoing support of Samiuddin Salman, a brother she met in the dawah group who works as an engineer in Saudi Arabia. He not only purchased her most elaborate and expensive work, which cost $1,000, but also advised her on how to promote her items and make other business decisions.

Her parents and siblings also encourage her, give feedback, and inspire her to persevere even when things are difficult.

Rehal, tray and book marks made of resin

Future plans

Ayesha hopes to set up a big outlet for resin hand-made artwork so that she may employ more women, particularly her students, and help them make money through this company. She is currently managing everything on her own, including art creation, product manufacturing, client inquiries, packaging, pricing, and so on.

Her advice to those women who aspire to set up businesses is to have strong faith in Allah. “Every woman must engage herself in doing something that makes her happy, boosts her creativity, and keeps her busy. This is also something that will ward off loneliness and depression,” she says.

Ayesha also provides online therapy sessions to women who struggle with mental health concerns.

Connect with Ayesha

One can buy her work ShawqCalligraphy  on the etsy store online: She can also be contacted on her Instagram and Facebook handles @shawqcalligraphy.