It is believed that in the 18th century, Tipu Sultan invited craftsmen from Persia (now Iran) to train people in Channapatna to make lacquered wooden toys. Traditionally, ivory wood was used for this craft as its white base brings out the true dye colours, but consequently rosewood, sandalwood and other varieties were also used. The artisans turn out a variety of products by chiselling out a block of wood spinning on a lathe machine with different blades. The vegetable dyes used for lacquer work make the products eco-friendly and safe for use by children. The craft has obtained a GI status (Geographical Indication) which recognises that it can only be made in this town. This is how Channapatna, a town 60 kms out of Bangalore earned the name, Gombegala Ooro (Toy-town).