News

Weaving in the time of Covid-19

download 6 Weaving in the time of Covid-19

Rather than soliciting donations, Antaran, an initiative by India’s oldest philanthropic organisation, Tata Trusts, urges everyone to purchase handwoven products at wholesale prices directly from the artisans they work with, at www.antaranartisanconnect.in. In order to mitigate the hardships caused by this downturn, beautiful handlooms and weaves can be purchased and the payment can be made directly to the artisan through the portal. Thereby, enabling him/her to live a dignified life in these difficult times, and as soon as life returns to normal, deliveries will be made at the earliest.

It comes as no surprise that a world-renowned centre for handlooms and textile weaving industry of India, like most other industries, is suffering terribly under the current countrywide lockdown. Covid19 has hit the heart of the handloom sector. The lockdown in effect from 24 March took everyone by surprise, especially this particular industry, which has now led to its questions of survivability. Craftspeople, who are, mainly self-employed, and dependent on seasonal retail sales and direct orders, are suffering the brunt of this pandemic.
Antaran, an initiative by India’s oldest philanthropic organisation Tata Trusts is bringing seminal changes in the crafts sector, to begin with, the handloom sector. India is recognized for its rich handlooms, and only about a few have seen the light of the day while the others remain unexposed commercially. These fine and unique weaves with undiluted skills of artisans have immense potential in contemporary markets — especially from a Sustainable Fashion point of view.
Says Sharda Gautam, Head of Craft, Tata Trusts, “Our artisans are enterprising and resilient and we need to stand by them in these trying times. None of us has ever witnessed a situation like the ongoing one, more so our brothers and sisters in the interior of India. They do not need our charity. They need our reaffirmation in their art and craft and we can demonstrate this by continuing to purchase from them.”
Antaran focusses on such hidden handloom clusters and has started with four States known for their rich cultural weaves viz. Assam (Kamrup cotton and Eri silk), Nagaland (Dimapur and Phek, backstrap loom textiles), Andhra Pradesh (Venkatgiri – fine cotton and silk weave embellished with Jamdani, Zari) and Odisha (Maniabandha weft Ikat in fine cotton, silk; Gopalpur weaves in Ghicha and Tussar).
Belonging to an informal economical sector, small artisans and producer groups lack access to financial assistance and cannot rely on financial institutions to tide them through such a crisis. At the same time raw material suppliers do not give them any credit for supplies. Although, the Indian government is supplying free food rations to a maximum extent possible but most of the artisans, especially daily wagers are finding it extremely difficult to feed their families and cater to other emergencies.
Antaran team and the artisans associated with them are utilizing this lockdown period to the fullest in developing new designs in the online consultation. They are sharing ideas, exchanging feedback, finalizing concepts and the artisans are showing a keen interest in developing these samples as soon as the lockdown is lifted. The artisan entrepreneurs, as addressed by the team, are being encouraged to utilize this break by turning it into an opportunity to plan and rethink a new direction and interpretation for the weaves of their clusters. Interactive online communications with the Antaran
team are helping the artisans to sharpen their knowledge for product presentation, business communications while they continue to engage with customers through the Antaran Artisan Connect initiative. This regular interaction between the customer and the artisans is helping in a constant exchange of knowledge between the customer and the artisan in knowing about the craft and customer demands respectively.
With a developing base in strong entrepreneurship skills, in order to become independent brand owners, the artisans are also consolidating their business, improving their product catalogue, re-organizing inventory of raw material and finished products. They are also actively trying to set up micro-enterprises in order to scale up their operations. At this point they are trying to unlock their working capital, which has been blocked due to buyers not being able to take deliveries of orders nor give any commitments due to their own uncertain situation. Therefore, it is need of the hour to
support artisans with much-required monies through direct purchases, to avert and come out of this crisis with the least possible trauma

Related posts

Devidyuti Ghosh appointed new Director of Rooms at The Westin Goa

The recently launched, The Westin Goa appointed Devidyuti Ghosh as their Director of Rooms. An experienced professional with a broad spectrum of knowledge, Devidyuti Ghosh will be…

Preferred Hotels & Resorts welcomes 11 new member hotels

Preferred Hotels & Resorts welcomed 11 new member hotels

Park Inn by Radisson Clark’s new South Wing brings feel-good vibe to the Philippines

In the Philippines, Park Inn by Radisson Clark has opened its all-new South Wing, adding more accommodation options for domestic and international guests in…

Hyde Hotels opens its first property in Dubai with the 276-room Hyde Dubai Business Bay

Hyde Hotels announced the Hyde Dubai Business Bay

Tanvir Shaikh appointed Front Office Manager at Courtyard by Marriott Surat

Auro Hotels appointed Tanvir Shaikh as Front Office Manager at Courtyard by Marriott Surat. In his new role, Tanvir Shaikh will be…

Abu Dhabi is first location globally to receive revolutionary anti-covid 19 medication

The world’s newest anti-viral treatment for COVID-19, Sotrovimab, is now available for early treatment of certain categories of COVID-19 patients in the…

South Korea MICE Travel Game Show hits top spot in corporate engagement activities in 2020-21

Korea Tourism Organization and Today’s Traveller, successfully organised the “South Korea MICE Travel Game Show”

Marriott International to launch Courtyard by Marriott brand in beautiful Sri Lanka by late 2021

Marriott International, Inc. signed an agreement with Colombo City Centre Partners (Private) Limited, part of the Abans Group, to launch Courtyard by Marriott Colombo Sri Lanka in late 2021.

Joyjit Chakravorty appointed General Manager at Hilton Garden Inn, New Delhi/ Saket effective June 15, 2021

Hilton Garden Inn, New Delhi/Saket announced the appointment of Joyjit Chakravorty as the General Manager of the hotel with effect from June 15, 2021

Shuvendu Banerjee appointed new General Manager Crowne Plaza Today New Delhi Okhla

Crowne Plaza Today New Delhi Okhla announced the appointment of Shuvendu Banerjee as the new General Manager. With an illustrious experience of…