In this article: working around and preventing pandemic induced emotional impulse-shopping, aesthetic fashion therapy ideas to soothe lockdown frustration, pretty stay-at-home outfit inspo, India-based thrift store recommendations, informative snippets on Indian textile and traditional costume, the importance of moments of playful escapism for adults in lockdown, sustainable restyling, mindful consumerism and feel-good fashion.
It looks like the only outings for us – if very essential and unavailable via online means – will be grocery runs for the next few weeks. … Read Full
Some DIY: Sashiko, a Japanese upcycling craft tradition, blended with appliqué from Ajrakh, an Indian handblock printed textile!
I always skip the long-winded introductions when I’m reading a process tutorial, so I’m going to get right into it now that I’m writing one. This is some sashiko mending on a denim shirt with a twist – incorporating a patch that peeks out of a rip in the denim. I chose an Ajrakh hand block printed motif for my patch, you … Read Full
The fashion industry can be a toxic one to work in, what commonly comes to mind is the lives fast fashion garment workers in sweatshops; but the culture of exploitation often prevails as one goes higher up the chain. Fashion’s mental health problem touches the lives of students, interns, assistants, designers, those in high powered positions even. … Read Full
In all of my exposure to Indian sustainable fashion labels, I’ve often come across an amusing amount tokenism and greenwashing. A tendency akin to students wanting to pass an examination by doing the bare minimum, most ‘slow’ and ‘sustainable’ brands turn out not to be as hunky-dory and ethical as they market themselves to be. The indigenous, slow techniques are present; but dig deeper and you find kaam-chalao (half-hearted) craftsmanship done quickly or sparsely on mill-made powerloom fabrics. The artisan
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A Holistic, All-Natural Guide by Rhituparna Mitra
The tropical Indian summer is here, and it’s the perfect time to adopt eco-conscious summer practices from knowledge that lies in our cultural plethora Ayurvedic and slow living regimes! Isn’t it amusing how we sit inside our air conditioned rooms, ironically berating climate change, all the while knowing that our extensive carbon emission is the very cause of our discomfort?
Rhituparna Mitra is an eco-conscious maven and a passionate environmentalist who leads a … Read Full
Kaithoon, a village of about 15,000 people in Rajasthan, is home to the ethereal kota doria weave. With 2500 looms, it houses weavers who have been working here for 300 years – their forefathers were brought here from Mysore in the 17th century by Maharao Kishore Singh, a general in the Mughal Army. This textile is locally known as Kota Masuria, because of it’s roots in Mysore. A true blue Kota Doria combines cotton and silk yarns in a … Read Full
It’s officially my first chance at procuring, wearing and learning about weaves that aren’t part of the mainstream saree narrative – and discovering Saaranga Chennai was instrumental in making this long overdue event of my six yard revival journey happen. South India has a plethora of handwoven treasures, each state having it’s array of weaves right from the affordable to the resplendent. The Chedi Butta – woven in Veeravanallur – is one such daintily beautiful weave, that has roots all … Read Full
We’ve all encountered a kantha – be it saree, dupatta, suit, cushion or blanket. But a little known fact that differentiate’s this eastern Indian tradition from several other embroidery crafts is that there lies a profound functionality behind it, for it was in it’s truest essence a craft tradition of the poor. Discarded textile scraps sewn together with a running stitch – the basic foundational block of needlework – to create something new. One of India’s oldest embroidery traditions, the … Read Full
We’ve all heard of recycling and upcycling, recreating new garments with the old. Following the same principle, there exists an eclectic, beautiful textured handloom textile that is literally a saree recreated by scraps of older sarees! The process is fascinating yet simple…
The warp is with new yarn and the weft is with strips of thin cloth obtained by tearing old sarees length wise. For non textile experts, this simply means that long, thin strips of cloth cut from old … Read Full
White on white chikankari is a soothing, pristine and royal textile to wear – the feeling takes you all the way back to when Noor Jehan, wife of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, probably introduced it.
This beautiful, long kurta is sustainably special in many ways
– it is a hand-me-down, and I always promote raiding and reusing clothing from wardrobes around you especially when it comes to gorgeous Indian textiles. Buy Less, Use More.
-it features exquisitely intricate shadow handwork … Read Full