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An All-Women Collective Weaves Natural Fabrics In This Small Town in India

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An All-Women Collective Weaves Natural Fabrics In This Small Town in India

This is what we mean when we say hand-made is crafted from the heart. In this edition, we take you behind the scenes to reveal an all-women collective from Charaka, who make eco-friendly fabrics with minimal damage to the world around us.


Much like art, fashion has always held a mirror to society, and offered a response to the social and political climate of its time. However, the industry’s own workings have never interrogated as much as it has been now. At the peak of hyper-consumerism and a fading natural ecosystem, the creators and consumers of fashion are now looking at conscious ways of consuming that are kinder to the planet while giving back to the community.

Fashion’s buzz-words have never been more socially or politically correct and words like ‘sustainable’, ‘eco-friendly’ and ‘organic’ have grown into our everyday vocab, but what do they really mean to the consumer?

We took a look behind-the-scenes at the people in Heggodu, a little town that employs an all-women collective to create fabrics that borrow from the natural eco-system, and is kind on the environment.

WEAVING


The local collective of women at Charaka, use naturally grown cotton and weave them into yarns.

DYEING
The yarn is painstakingly dyed by hand using natural ingredients like areca nut wastes, rusted iron to give them their colour.

TAILORING
The dyed yarns are woven into fabrics which are carefully tailored by the women. They take care to use every scrap left over to create patch-work fabrics.

PRINTING
The finished fabric sometimes is hand-block printed by the women using wood-blocks and natural dyes to give it a textural interest.

What’s the most striking here is the sense of camaraderie the women share. They begin their day with prayers in the common area and cheerfully go about their individual tasks through the day. Everyone’s job is not the same and this diversity within the workspace is interesting to observe.

One of them told us she preferred this to otherwise working in the fields, which would have been their primary income source had Charaka not existed.

For The Humbl Co., a brand we launched with Mahesh Babu, the fabrics for our Roots Collection came from this all-women collective. In little ways, we believe in putting our efforts into sustainable living practices like this one.

This, is the way forward for us. Small changes in small ways.

This story is brought to you from The Humbl Co.’s eco-conscious Roots Collection that aims to give back to communities in small yet significant ways, in line with the face of the brand Mahesh Babu’s humanitarian efforts.

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