The art of wood carving has flourished in many parts of Madhya Pradesh, and the beautifully embellished wooden ceilings, doors and lintels with finely carved designs are silent testimonials of its glory. The wood carvers of Madhya Pradesh, with great sensitivity and skill transform different varieties of wood such as shish, teak, dhudi, sal and kikar into works of art. Besides the famous wooden memorials, the
craftspersons of Bastar and Chattisgarh, Malwa,
Nimar and Bundelkhand, Sheopur-Kalan, and Rewa also make pipes, masks, doors, window frames and sculptures. Madhya Pradesh also offers a variety of painted and lacquered woodcraft items such as toys, boxes,
bedposts, cradleposts and flower vases. The major centres of this art are Gwalior,
Sheopur-Kalan (Morena), Rewa and Budhni (Raisen).
Combs, though a small object of daily use has a very significant place in one of the tribes called
Muria of bastar. The boys and girls of this tribe are easily distinguishable from those of others' by their use of carved wooden combs as their hair ornament. The young
Murias become members of 'Gotul', a youth dormitory for boys and girls, for the selection of their life mates. In the 'Ghotul' the boys gift either wooden or brass combs to the girls of their choice. The status of a girl is enhanced by the number of comb, that she possesses. These combs are elaborately carved by the boys. The boys also wear combs and their combs are bigger than those of girls and are more elaborately carved too. According to tribal rules, within a year of her marriage a
Muria girl is required to remove the combs gradually and send them to her 'Ghotul ' lover. She retains only those combs, which were gifted by her husband.