SLOW CLOTHING; the new luxury, Handloomed Ikat Sheath

Fri 26 Feb 2016

“On my final afternoon in New Delhi in July, before I boarded a flight back to Sydney, I spent my last hours at a wonderful market in New Delhi. I got lost on the way there, which made the journey feel like an adventure, as all experiences in India. As I strolled through the market pathways, I came upon a store draped in multi-coloured threads with the most interesting textile items in the window. I stopped to take a closer look and noticed this incredibly intricate textile. Immediately drawn to its unique and understated beauty, I had to take a closer look. For the next few hours I was consumed with the narrative that I am passing on to you: of the handloom weavers in Southern India who create these incredible Double Ikat Woven creations—an ancient tradition. I learned of the scarcity of the craft, and the intricate skill required to produce such an item.”

Ikat is the oldest known patterned textiles in the world, with a rich history spanning multiple cultures. The weave of the fabric creates the pattern, and artisans dye and weave everything by hand to make the pattern correctly.

 The intricate process behind each Sheath is fascinating.

The Hand Loomed Cotton Ikat Sheath is made using the Double Ikat technique of the Pochampally region in the newly made state of Telengana, Southern India. To create a Double Ikat textile, both the warp and weft threads are tied off then dyed. The hazy pattern of Ikat can be seen in the warp and weft directions. Tremendous precision is needed for weaving Double Ikat as each horizontal yarn requires careful monitoring for perfect alignment. It takes double the amount of time and effort to weave a Double Ikat textile compared the single direction weave of warp or weft Ikat.

These sheaths are ethically produced, providing livelihoods to many weavers and their families. Handloom weaving has empowered many families in this region. The artisans creating each Porcelain Ikat Sheath are able to earn a living, support their family, and better their community.

In addition to sustainable artisan relationships, quality lies at the core of our company. In our search for expert craftsmanship, Brigid discovered these hand loom artisans. Their work is of exceptional quality, and we are delighted to present it to our Australian and international clientele.

 Learn more about the artisans Chipa narsamma and Chipa anumaya here.

These unique sheaths are available in stores now.

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