Our handloom fabric is woven on traditional looms in Madhya Pradesh, India and Karnataka, India. Employees here are paid 85% - 178% higher than the India minimum wage.
Weaving is an ancient craft that dates back through all cultures for thousands of years. In India it has an exceptionally long history with regional distinctions throughout the country. It is a slow process that usually takes at least two months for each order. It employees many more people than machine weaving and does not require any electricity, causing less of a carbon footprint.
We work with two different hand loom weaving groups in this state. One is a charitable trust that is dedicated to supporting the role of women in the craft industry and to making handloom weaving a respected and income-earning career. The other is a not-for-profit dedicated to the sustainability of the hand loom craft, the artisans, and their communities.
The yarn is hand spun and once ready, the weavers go to work setting up their looms, which can be a very complicated intricate process depending on the design.
Each piece of yarn must pass through its own heddle, like an eye of a needle. These longitudinal threads are the warp.
The warp gets lifted up and down by foot-operated harnesses, which the heddles are attached to. The threads that move across are the weft. Different weaves and patterns are created by how the warp is lifted up and down as the weft passes through perpendicularly.
“…woven together, the threads of the warp and the weft represent the symbiosis between the individual and the universal soul…”
–India Sutra: On the Magic Trail of Textile by Ellena Berenice