The beauty and variety of Indian handloom is legendary. The texture and color with the most intricate of woven patterns and embroidery can leave most anyone spellbound. Archaeological evidence traces the beginning of handloom in the Indian sub-continent back to the Indus Valley Civilization. The Indian handloom industry while being driven at a household level also found growing adoption across the world. The Indian handloom industry today employs over 4.5 million people, both directly and indirectly, and is the second largest employer for rural India next only to agriculture. While the numbers seem impressive, the handloom sector is still plagued by problems. Low wages, rising costs, rise in power looms and proliferation of fakes are some of the issues that weavers have to contend with. New initiatives by the Textiles Ministry along with private entrepreneurship will hopefully help the Indian handloom industry regain its prominence.
A group of handloom admirers has taken an initiative to promote the beauty and variety of handloom in Poland, under the name: Charkha. Our reporter, TINA has an exclusive report.
TINA: What motivated you to work exclusively on Handlooms?
CHARKHA: Starting from the Idea that Indian Handlooms is a place of pride in its Art, Details, Hand Skill, Eco Friendly Nature, Quality and the Fabric texture, We are a group of Handloom Admirers who wanted to promote Indian Handlooms across the globe starting from Poland. Indian Handlooms provide collections of Textiles for everybody – Kids and Adults, Men and Women. There is a special skill in these Handloom Weavers, which has to be brought to limelight and deserve recognition. In addition to their elegant Hand skill, its also high time that the weaving communities need our support.
TINA: Why in Poland?
CHARKHA: Though the idea is to promote Indian Handlooms across the globe, our group is based in Poland which makes it easy for the Brand’s operations and moreover the people here are amazing and we realised that this is a place with huge admiration and love towards Indian culture. We thought people here would easily understand the motivation and purpose behind Charkha.
TINA: Why Handlooms?
CHARKHA: For many reasons, first being the Elegant look that’s purely handmade which also adds advantages for its Quality, Eco Friendly Nature, Minimal Carbon footprint as most of these machines use minimum or Zero electricity. We are also motivated by the idea of creating Modern Day Apparel designs from Traditional Indian Fabrics and associate our passion for Fashion with a purpose to save the weavers.
TINA: What products do you have in your store?
CHARKHA: Charkha has a variety of Handwoven Apparel made from fabrics from a number of highly skilled Handloom weavers from different weaving communities across various states of India. This includes Benaras from Uttar Pradesh, Paithani Fabric from Maharashtra , Uppada and Pochampalli from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh , Khadi etc.. Besides, At Charkha we always want to make the shopping easy for customers, so together with the Apparel, the customers can also shop necessary accessories to enhance the whole Traditional and Ethnic look.
And To also include other Hand crafting skills, Charkha also hosts several signature and authentic Handmade Home Décor and Home Essentials from India – Kondapalli Toys from the state of Andhra Pradesh for example.
TINA: How to buy your products?
CHARKHA: Charkha will soon launch the Brand’s own e-commerce website from where the full range of products can be viewed, Orders can be placed and Tracked.
TINA: Where can people find you?
CHARKHA: For Collaboration and Details, We can be contacted at @charkhaworld on Facebook or IG.