"Blessed are the handloom makers, what skill they possess! Brilliant .After wearing these clothes, even a crow will look like a film actress" said Vaishnavi, a Textile Engineer by profession.
She was pointing to one of the Kancheevaram sarees inside the local textile shop,”
Swaminathan Fashions” in Chennai.
“This is not Kancheevaram”, said an old man who had a dash of Vibhuti (Bhasmam) on his forehead.
“Dear Child that is an ordinary regular saree. You can use it for daily use, plus you don’t have to buy another one for at least a couple of years “.
A couple of years? She quipped.
Yes ! that’s a handloom saree, no? You don’t know?
If this is a regular saree, How would be a royal saree look like, Uncle?
Come, I have handloom sarees from all over India, You can have a look?
See… Paithani sarees from Maharashtra, Banarasi Saree from Varanasi, Baluchuri Sarees from West Bengal, and your ……. Kancheevaram Silk Sarees.
The expression on my face was like that of a child inside a house fully made up of Chocolates.
“Have you ever worn handloom before?” Mr. Swaminathan asked
I was ashamed to have never said: “No, I did not”. Unaware of the greatness of an art which only India possessed.
In that case, the handloom makers would be rich, right, Mr. Swami? Other customers in the shop started to laugh at my guileless conclusion.
This is a common reality, which we see these days. Youngsters of India are unaware of what handloom weavers face… each day. Today’s youngsters need to be educated on India’s Rich Weaving Heritage and how has it been surprising foreign citizens. One big reason for the attraction of foreigners “like files on a honey “is the variety and diversity. You won’t be able to duplicate the certain type of handloom cloth once again since they are made by a combination of skilled personnel, fiber and also climate.Handloom weaving takes place in villages supporting lakhs of families for their Livelihood,
Where every member gets engaged in producing new sari. One person will tie the loom, one person will dye etc..This is the second biggest occupation in India, first being agriculture.The weavers are not in the best of shape, and their condition is deteriorating, just because of one reason.
Indian youngster’s ignorance in handloom.
They carry a lot of myths with them.
Some of them are:
Handloom is the same as handicraft.
Certainly not! Handicrafts are showpieces. But Handloom is not a showcase item. It is made of only either cotton or silk. So the material is long lasting. Even the rag cloth made out of these fibers may last a decade.
Handloom mean only sarees :
This is one another myth.Sarees are just the tip of the iceberg that handloom showcases.
They have a pool of different types of clothing, like Pashmina Scarves, Shawls & Stoles from Barabanki, Kurtas, sherwanis, Pyjamas, dhoties.
What happens in handloom industry is almost same as what used to happen in agriculture.
The weavers not getting their praise and due. They live in utter poverty. Making a paltry wage of about 100 – 150 rupees a day, their day starts with dyeing the threads.
The remnants of the dye-color on their hands will continue to be there for the rest of the day. Even while eating.
Meenakshi was stunned by the newfound understanding about the ever brilliant handloom industry and the apathy it faced.
So the handicrafts are the best ones .. Correct me if I am wrong, uncle swami
There are disadvantages of wearing handloom clothes as well , my dear.
1) You are not a QUEEN
The handloom textiles have its own autocratic style. If you wear it ,You might be misunderstood to be a rich person or Queen to be the least.Why do you want to look different from the crowd, it attracts attention... You know?
So …ESCAPE from this addiction.
2) They are Natural and comfortable
They are so natural, that they can actually absorb your sweat and give your skin the “air touch” that it needs. Once you wear handloom clothing, you will never wear anything else. So here, we are losing the practice of wearing artificial, chemical-based clothes. Don’t spoil yourself.
3) Don’t be yourself:
Your selection in handlooms will depict …who you are? Why do you want to do that? It’s always best to Follow others…isn’t it?
4) Memory Fades:
Do you remember how many clothes you have purchased till date? No, since they are too many and moreover nothing is worth remembering, all looks the same. Many of them are torn, long gone and dusted.
But with your handloom collection, you will remember every cloth purchased .A single damage to it will cringe your heart, not for the price, But for the love of it.
Why do you want emotion attached to your closet family, only princes have that kind of attachment?
And the last which is the least..
5) You might help someone:
Handloom products are the genuine ‘Make in India’ product, though that is not the only reason they should be supported.
Household production can provide stable livelihoods for a large number of weavers' families.
AVOID! AVOID! AVOID Handlooms, they actually lasts longer and you may miss your extra unnecessary trips to do the errands.
HAHAHA…. we both started laughing our heart out.