Sunday, August 24, 2008

Exploring India's textile heritage

At SoulQuest we are committed to bringing Indian techniques and materials to the fashion world .As part of this journey we explore various regions of India to understand better it's textile heritage and find innovative ways to weave it into contemporary fashion. It's inspiring and heartening to see the work of committed individuals and groups across India who have persevered diligently to nurture craft traditions and make them accessible. 

As we see more of the textile heritage of India it's clear that very little of it gets presented internationally . The surprising bit is that it is inadequately presented within India too . Delhi probably has the sole distinction of the metro that has many regional products available in retail through stores or exhibitions . In most other cities products with the textile heritage of various regions are available in a fragmented way . Or when available it is often too highly priced or represents a certain(limited) aspect at best of the technique or craft . The look is predictable. This is unfortunate because it creates a vicious cycle that affects the craftspersons the most and ultimately the craft . Viewed in this context - the contribution of various individuals and groups in different regions working to nurture and revive the craft traditions of the region - is invaluable.

When crafts and traditional skills decline it naturally affects the artisans the most . The loss however is not only that of the artisans . Consumers lose too. Hand made products have a beauty that cannot be created by machine .

Exploring India's textile heritage and seeking to find unusual ways to share it with the world is an exhilarating journey .



The problem lies in acceptance. Only when the foreign body or country accepts it, we respect it. Eg. Dabbawallas.


Neelakantan said...

You might want a series on this itself. Should make for a fascinating, educative journey given that so much of it is unknown...

Savitha Rao said...

Tks . We're planning to add that to the website so that all info re a region / technique can be viewed comprehensively . Will share links to the info on the site / related experiences and insights through the blog.