National Handloom Day
National Handloom Day

The new love for handloom among young women has become a corporate wear today. Wasn’t handloom an Indian way of life! We have a very rich heritage in terms of handicrafts and handlooms. Handlooms are never uncool and old-fashioned; it is a fabric that connects us to our history and politics. 

Gone are the days when it was only seen on activists, politicians or government employees. Every woman is promoting, and they understood that it’s an affordable luxury. India has the most diverse handwoven textile tradition and we must ensure that the weaver benefits economically to continue it. 

Sunitha Simon, a 31-year-old, who works for Airtel, Hyderabad says, “I love handloom sarees and from past one year I am wearing it. Every Monday we have a board meeting in which we have to wear formals but dropping all that we all choose to wear a handloom saree. The campaign #IWearHandloom inspired me to wear handloom sarees.”

Sunitha’s love for handloom started when she visited the weavers’ community. “I recently visited weavers in villages like Pochampalli where I picked up my entire years' handloom collection. I also learnt how to weave a little. Saree is something that people usually wear on special occasions, and saree among working women is considered as an ethnic outfit.”

Sunitha wants to change the concept that wearing saree is an old fashion thing. “People used to tease me ‘Amma ji’ when I wore a saree to the office for the first few months. The least one could do is wear a handloom saree at least once in a week and inspire others to help the weavers in earning.”

Ayn Wesley, who works for State Street, feels that we should stop buying handloom from the retailers. “I am a handloom lover and from three years I am wearing handloom. I want to have a weave from every State if possible. They are a lot of people travelling to get a GI tag (geographical indication) for the handloom. There are a lot of other weavers, who are suffering in Madhya Pradesh, remote areas of Bihar and Karnataka, who are trying to revive the tradition. I usually buy from a weaver and try not to buy from a retailer because nothing goes to the weaver.”

“I have always seen my mom wearing a lot of Bengali cotton and that made me tilt towards handlooms. I like handloom because of the details in it and the mistakes on the sarees are also cute because you will know that the mistake is honest. People ask me isn’t it difficult to wear a saree and stay all day long in it, I wonder that our mothers have done it, so why such kind of questions arise. It is just the matter of practice to drape a saree. I am going to wear a pretty handloom saree for the National Handloom Day and go to work,” she adds. 

Handloom lover Tulika Conroy says, “I started wearing sarees when I was in Class VIII. I was very passionate towards wearing sarees. The look of it was very appealing so whenever there were any festivals I used to wear sarees. There was a collection that my mom had, and I tried everything she had which included handloom and my love for handloom started.” 

 “I have always been in awe looking at how my mom would wear crisp cotton sarees to work when I was a kid. I have been wearing handloom since my college days. It's been 11 years now that I have been wearing sarees on a regular basis,” says Santana Lakshmi.

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