Freedom Tree: An original print design studio in the gritty heart of post-industrial Mumbai
DEC 12, 2023 | By Team ELLE DECOR India
Mumbai, where the pulse of creativity beats against the backdrop of steel and concrete, there exists a haven of design that defies convention — Freedom Tree, an original print design studio that stands as a testament to the vibrant soul of contemporary India.
It offers signature bold print-led designs in ceramics, decor, textiles and furniture.
With eight unique design store locations and a flourishing online presence, Freedom Tree has become a celebration of contemporary India, merging traditional handicrafts with bold, fresh and relevant designs.
Freedom Tree design grew out of India’s first colour and trend consulting studio, and has its roots in the cult Mumbai-based homestore from the 1990s — Takete Maluma.
As concept creators, Freedom Tree identifies emerging lifestyle trends, translating them into compelling inspiration and products. What sets them apart is their design philosophy—creating with joy, eschewing pretence and embracing uniqueness.
Their in-house designed ranges seamlessly blend international and local elements. All their ranges are made locally in India using handcrafted and traditional processes. It is a celebration of contemporary India.
12 years of print prowess
For over 12 years, Freedom Tree has crafted hundreds of original prints, telling stories through bold colour and abstract motifs. A bold and graphic print language is a hallmark of their design style.
The prints are designed in-house, and rendered onto textile surfaces, and then travel to other surfaces on furniture, ceramics and decor.
Design and development
Freedom Tree’s design journey begins with their team of designers exploring a seasonal or cultural theme. Illustrated motifs come together in broad sheet prints for fabrics and smaller piece prints and accents for cushions.
Using the intensive science behind colour matching, surprising combinations emerge. Designs are then rendered through screen-printing, weaving, and other handworking techniques that celebrate local traditions.
The core categories of textiles, furniture, decor and dining are crafted largely by hand, including painted and carved decor and ceramics, and artisanal furniture-making techniques.
Freedom Tree unveils seasonal collections throughout the year, reflecting the zeitgeist of the times. The most recent Mansara Collection, for instance, pays homage to sacred geometries, translating ancient Sanskrit treatises on Indian architecture into abstract and geometric designs for modern homes.
The print motifs travel from hero-print textiles, into soft furnishings such as rugs, cushions and bedlinen, and onto furniture, and even ceramic ware.
Responsible design and sustainable livelihoods
Working with artisans across India, the brand supports traditional skills threatened by mechanisation and imports. The goal is to preserve and elevate craft industries by sourcing locally, upskilling workers and providing contemporary design expressions.
At every stage, the brand makes sustainable choices in sourcing recycled materials, using less energy-intensive processes, and designs that stand the test of time.
Freedom Tree’s design stores are not just retail spaces, they are unique expressions of the neighbourhoods they inhabit. From a Portuguese-style villa in Goa to an industrial showcase in Thane, each location offers an immersive experience of the brand’s print design collections.
You can find Freedom Tree at any of its eight unique locations in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Goa, Pune, and Thane.
Freedom Tree extends its capabilities to space design for residential and commercial spaces, co-hosted events, installations at design shows and customised gift options for corporations and events.
In essence, Freedom Tree’s print legacy is a journey through time, tradition and innovation—a symbol of the brand’s commitment to celebrating India’s rich design heritage while charting new territories in the world of contemporary aesthetics.