The duo of designers Swati and Sunaina, who met in 2007 with the aim of rediscovering the lost treasures of woven fabrics in India and offering them to a demanding public, say that the hand loom industry remains a very disorganized sector despite be so great.
And because it is disorganized, it lacks the precision required to meet quality standards and global market demands. Such precision is possible “only if the sector is organized from start to finish, and the standardized standards set by the government are rigorously incorporated,” Swati told IANS in an e-mail interview from Kolkata.
Many Indian designers have chosen to create innovative silhouettes of Indian handlooms.
“Designers can and already are creating great silhouettes of Indian jeans,” Sunaina said, adding that what is now required is a “lateral shift towards manual textiles and appreciation of their quality and value among those who choose to dress with cuts and western patterns. ” “Alternatively, a sari, which is the most versatile uncoated clothing covered and presented in many ways to create any desired silhouette, is suitable for the red carpet.”
The duo of designers has infused innovation and freshness in their manual work, which reflects on motifs, colors and placements, culminating in limited edition textiles that celebrate tradition. All handloom saris in their Kolkata store “Swati and Sunaina” are made in Banaras Trench Looms using techniques passed down generations by master craftsmen. The use of pure gold zari and certificate to weave saris in an intricate way has been the hallmark of the label that consciously chooses quality over quantity.
For some years now, they have worked with master weavers and this has involved understanding how this zari is made. “Banaras handloom industry is very versatile and adaptable” and is open to influence and inputs, making it “easy for anyone to put their designs in the production process.” The weavers are known to pick up any specialized form of tissue from any sector and recreate it – a case at the point of being Jaamdani of Bengal – making Banaras handloom viable ‘Make in India’ product, “said Swati.