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Femina|August 2023
The Swadeshi Movement of 1905, a precursor of the modern-day Make In India initiative, proved that the handloom sector was a reliable pillar of the economy and a means of self sustenance. Over a century later, however, spurred by changes in our wardrobes, the handloom industry, too, has undergone major shifts. To understand the current landscape better, we speak with creative individuals whose labels have focussed on textiles and who continue to work with the loom and those who operate it.
Ashwini Arun Kumar
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"The handloom sector has DEFINITELY GROWN, BUT WE NEED to evolve at the fabric level"

GAURAV JAI GUPTA DESIGNER & FOUNDER - AKAARO

At AKAARO, we create yarn blends with materials that you don’t generally see together,” says designer Gaurav Jai Gupta. Gaurav started his label in 2010 but has been working with unconventional source materials – such as metal – since the early 2000s when he was still studying in Delhi at the National Institute of Fashion Technology. “Back then, there was no concept of metallic clothing – not in India, at least. Even zari was viewed as ornamentation but never from the point of view of a woven textile.” Things changed when he introduced his handwoven molten liquid sari – a unique blend of fine silk and zari resulting in a highly-reflective diaphanous fabric. It has been his label’s most noteworthy offering that has also become his signature.

This story is from the August 2023 edition of Femina.

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This story is from the August 2023 edition of Femina.

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