Let’s Shop Sustainably!
Ever been enthralled by the exquisite handloom collections? There is something truly magical about the unconventional textures, breathable comfort, cultural touch along with earthy colors! Isn’t it?
Handloom refers to a wide range of wooden frames that are used by skilled artisans to weave fabrics out of natural fibers such as Cotton, Silk, Wool, Jute, and other natural materials. It is often a family-run business, where everyone is involved in the cloth-making process. Right from spinning to colouring to weaving, everything is done on the loom with utmost dedication and craftsmanship. The cloth product created out of these looms is also called Handloom.
The whole procedure of cloth production is done on a loom, a device that is entirely made of wood and doesn't require any electrical power to operate, thus making this whole process, one of the most eco-friendlier ways of producing clothes.
This timeless craft of handloom is a tradition that has been passed down from generation to generation.
Indian handlooms have a long, glorious past that dates back to ancient times. Handloom was one of the most important Indian sectors that ruled International Trade and Commerce. Its rich and glorious past mentions its huge demand, international attraction, and worldwide fascination which resulted in it generating employment, preserving culture and tradition, facilitating exportation, etc.
The handloom tradition originated from the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Right from the rich, Kancheepuram silks to the elegant cotton, etc., Tamil Nadu’s role and contribution in the handloom legacy is unparalleled and cannot be defined in mere words.
During ancient times, Indian fabrics were exported and taken across to many foreign countries including Europe, Egypt, East Asia, etc. India’s textile industry was admired by many countries. According to historical facts, gold and silver coins were carried in great amounts to India to be traded with the Indian handloom collections.
DOWNTURN IN HANDLOOM INDUSTRY
The early Industrial Revolution brought many key developments in Industrialization including the introduction of Power looms (mechanized looms). Under British rule, India became one of the topmost exporters of raw cotton which resulted in the entry of power looms and imported yarn machines, resulting in a huge loss of livelihood in traditional hand spinners and weavers.
Fortunately, the Indian Independence Movement saw various protests and developments including the Swadeshi Movement, which was introduced by Mahatma Gandhi. This movement reintroduced hand spinning and weaving which led to the fall of mills and machines. People started burning imported clothes and preferred to wear clothes made of Khadi.
THE CURRENT SCENARIO
The centralization of power looms has posed a major threat to the handloom industry, making it endangered! The handloom business has slowly started to lose its ground to the power loom industry. With poverty and deprivation as constant companions, more than thousands of weavers quit and commit suicides due to the negligence of the government.
It's time to act responsibly! We all must change and the first and foremost thing to start with is our mindset! Instead of supporting foreign brands, and buying clothes from malls, online, etc., we should start buying handloom collections. Machine-made clothes can be fancy but the minute, intricate designs and patterns that are done to perfection by skilled artisans cannot be surpassed and cannot be attained in any modern looms. By doing this, we are not just protecting and preserving our cultural pride but we also are passing it to the future generation. Let's all work together to encourage and uplift the weaver community. Let's do our bit by supporting and keeping this timeless tradition alive.