The applique craft of Ahmedabad is as magical as every textile craft lover would expect.The way skilful hands of the peppy Gujarati women artisans go along the cutting lines of the fabric to stitch on patterns onto another is amazing.
It was early cold morning on 2oth December at the Amdavad station, I got down the Rajdhani train from delhi when Manjula ben’s son greeted me to take me to her home where she was eagerly waiting to meet me. Im a textile surface designer and work with various crafts to develop contemporary surfaces for fashion and interiors.
After going through a maze of narrow corridors and small houses , I reached Manjula Ben’s home where her cheerful face greeted me and offered tea to begin our meeting.
With heaps of beautiful samples examples of her skilful labour she exemplified the beauty of the craft very efficiently.
See her LIVE doing her magic in this video link: https://youtu.be/xkG6501Fhb8
She showed me various samples of types of applique forms that were currently popular and what possibilities one can work with
With new commercial trends and want of cheap products tailored machine stitched appliques have also come into the markets which poses a threat to the continuity of usage of hand skills…
The craft application largely revolves around saree pallus, kurta yokes and borders with age old design form which haven’t changed much over the years and are found very repetitive, efforts are needed desperately to allow innovation in usage and presention of these forms so that there is a fresh lease of life and increased marketability of the products in the premium segments.
Now the second phase of the journey begins…Design process enhancement. Over the next few weeks I will be conceptualising surfaces and expressions to complement the craft and design novel product lines relevant to the current fashion markets…watch this space for exciting updates to see what happens next…
The reverse applique process is extremely exciting, versatile and dynamic. It has given us scope for a variety of textile innovations… One such application was to develop this entire range of maheshwari silk dupattas using the technique with zari kota underplay retaining the weightlessness and still evolving into a unique creative expression