Sustaining Support: A legacy of handmade
We believe strongly in the necessity to support handcraft industry of India. Especially, aiding the weaving of fabric with various hand processesand want to continually invest in and secure the future of these crafts.
Handwoven and handprinted fabrics are pledged to have a strong presence in each of our collections. We wanted to maintain their importance because of its significance to the people throughout its supply chain but also because the skills of these craftsmen allow us to embrace and support a heritage, traditions and skills that are passed down through generations and provide livelihoods to so many.
Handwoven fabric is not only unique for its gently textured appearance and tactility; the light, handspun fabric allows the skin to breathe and has the ability to keep you cool in hot weather yet warm on colder winter days. Most of our fabrics are handpsunon amber charkha (hand spinning wheel) and handwoven on hand looms.
From day dresses to versatile tops and bottoms, the handspun, handwoven fabric takes on a new life in our contemporary silhouettes.
The legacy of handmade products has been passed down from generations and it is essential that we sustain it for the future. One such example is the intricate weaving of Jamdani, an ancient technique that originated in Bengal, India. Made with fine cotton, this fabric features beautiful geometric patterns woven into it by skilled artisans.
The organic movement has also contributed to the sustainability of handmade crafts as people are becoming more aware of their environmental impact. Bhujodi, a handloom weaving technique from Gujarat, India uses organic cotton yarns to create stunning fabrics with unique textures and designs that are eco-friendly.
The 100% natural fibres used for our handwoven fabrics are mostly dyed in natural hues from leaves, barks, flowers, roots and seeds or vat dyed using non-reactive and non-toxic dyes. Some plants like Aloe Vera and Tulsi also impart medicinal properties to these fabrics.
The dyeing residues are treated at the same farm site, making full use of the on-site composting facility, which releases the treated water back into the farm’s system to allow it to be safely reused. Once dyed, the fabrics are dried naturally in sunlight and are not treated in any hot chambers.
HAND BLOCK PRINTING
Hand Block Printing has been a part of India’s craft heritage since the twelfth century. Textiles produced in this way are intrinsically gorgeous and has unique characteristic of pattern irregularity. This is a reminder of human touch behind their making with a soft thud of a weighted block falling rhythmically in the artisan’s hands.
It can take up to five weeks to carve and sculpt the intricate wooden blocks depending on the intricacy of the design. The blocks are then coated with dye and used to stamp out the patterns along a length of fabric. However, current demand for fast, mechanised production methods means that this ancient skill is in danger of being wiped out and lost from recognition. We want to see it brought back to life and reimagined in contemporary designs and fabrics.
CUTTING & STITCHING
Each of our handwoven garments are hand cut, being meticulously checked for flaws that may have resulted from their creation. Depending on the complexity of the design, the stitching may be divided between hand and machine – trying as hard as possible to see that each piece is made completely by one person.
HELPING WEAVING COMMUNITIES FLOURISH
Handcraft is a historic and vital sector in India’s economy, providing a source of revenue to millions. Over 3.5 million people in India are engaged in hand spinning and handweaving, and artisans constitute the second largest source of Indian livelihood after agriculture. The production of handspun and handwoven cotton fabric alone brings employment and income to thousands.
The flexibility in the nature of the work means that artisans generally work from their homes in rural settings. Without it, their access to a safe and secure income is severed. Given our long-standing relationships with the artisans across India, we have pledged to continue to support handloom industry and aid handmade fabric that provides so much and secure the future of related crafts in its making.