2 August, 2021
I wish to start by thanking all our weavers, artisans, customers, followers, friends and family for the unconditional love and support always. This past year, I have loved interacting with like-minded people who are mindful about what they wear – those who are conscious about where their clothes are coming from, how they are made and who is making them, those who are concerned about leaving a better planet for their children.
Personally I am very intrigued by the long and arduous process of the journey of plant to fabric and the innumerable steps and hands of artisans it goes through -
It all begins with our farmers who plant cotton seeds in spring season and the plant grows into green, bushy shrubs about one meter in height. Organic farming methods and natural fertilizers are used to grow this cotton. In a few weeks, the plant starts to produce floral buds which open up as big white & yellow flowers. These briefly grow pink and cream coloured flowers that, once pollinated, drop off and are replaced with fruit, better known as cotton bolls. After 55 days, the cotton bolls are ripe and ready for picking. After raw cotton is collected from the farms and brought at one place, it goes through ‘Ginning’ – separation of lint from the seeds. The cotton lint is soft pressed into bales which are fluffed up, laid over a conveyor belt and twisted into silvers to be wound around a bobbin – this process is called ‘Carding’. Then comes the step of ‘Hand Spinning’ where the cotton silvers from the bobbin are converted into yarn on spinning wheels or charkhas by our very abled artisan spinners. This yarn is held in tension over a loom, waiting for the weft to run through it – a stage termed as ‘Warping’. All looms use the hands and feet of our artisans rather than electricity. Next part is to be played by our master weavers who undertake ‘Hand Weaving’ where a plain warp is interwoven on multiple looms with weft. The criss-crossing or knotting with a shuttle running through makes the final fabric. Now that our fabric is ready, we use natural ingredients to colour it into different shades – this step is called ‘Natural Dyeing’. We use tree barks, roots, vegetables, fruits and plant extracts to make natural colours. We use many of the plain coloured fabrics as it is but we also ‘Hand Print’ some of them using the age old Indian art of hand block printing using incised wooden blocks. These blocks have different patterns to make the fabric look more attractive, artistic and fun to wear. Each of our blocks have a story to tell and our printers use a lot of patience and precision to print each block carefully. We also use other techniques like leaf printing and hand painting to make beautiful patterns. These fabrics are then carefully ‘Hand Tailored’ by our tailor masters into chique and unique designs to wear!
It is incredibly satisfying to see that with adopting Aavik natural fabrics, you are not only taking your green steps towards leading a more healthy & sustainable lifestyle but also that you are helping to provide for the livelihoods of many of the lesser privileged communities.
Thank you once again and do keep your love pouring. Your insights are very valuable to us, so please share any feedback that you may have.
And YESS! on popular demand, we have a surprise coming up very soon for our sustainable moms!
Stay safe ~ keep it healthy and natural...