Regional products to sell online: Explore India’s diverse fabrics

by Sahana on 16/04/2018
India’s diverse ethnic groups makes it a country rich in culture and indigenous handicrafts. The country has a plethora of regional fabrics and handcrafted weaves that you can source and sell online. The choice is not restricted to fabrics, you can choose to sell sarees too. The process is a fulfilling one. Not only can you build awareness about local craftwork, but you can also help regional workers gain recognition for their work.

A major step in that direction would be to use an online seller platform to set up your own fabric store. Amazon, with its impressive consumer base can prove to be your best bet in this regard. Before you set up your e-store, here is a list of materials you can source from each region based on its best local offerings:

Weaves of cotton

The Dhakai weaves of East Bengal: This malmal is an intricate weave of different coloured threads with multiple needles on unbleached, white cotton. The threads have a higher count than the cotton base. The practice of Dhakai weaving was brought to West Bengal by those who migrated from erstwhile East Bengal after the partition. This technique was also adopted in Uttar Pradesh under the name of Jamdani.

The Jamdani weaves of Uttar Pradesh: This style of weaving was introduced in Uttar Pradesh by the Nawabs of Oudh in the later part of the eighteenth century. On account of how expensive and intricate this process turned out to be, Jamdani is less prolific than it once used to be. The thread count is the same as the base count. White thread is often used on a white base, making the weave almost invisible except on close scrutiny. Silver and gold weaves are also used.

The Paithani weaves of Maharashtra: Much like tapestry weaves, zari thread is used in the warp and interlocked with the coloured threads of the weft which are then the two are interlocked. Complicated and exotic bird and flower patterns are woven.

The Chanderi weaves of Maharashtra: In the Chanderi technique, silk thread is used for the warp, and fine cotton for the weft.

The Ikat weaves of Andhra Pradesh: The Pochampalli saree is woven with ikat patterns. The ikat style involves pre dying the yarn based on the pattern before weaving.

The Tant of West Bengal: Tant sarees originate in West Bengal. Tant is woven all over West Bengal and Bangladesh. The weavers traditionally used handlooms which have now been replaced by power looms.

Weaves of Silk

The Banarasi weaves of Uttar Pradesh: A single weft of golden thread runs across the warp with silk thread and motifs and brightly coloured threads in the minakari jewellery style. These brocades come in numerous styles of weaving.

The Baluchar weaves of West Bengal: These are weaves of plain woven cloth with brocades of untwisted threads of silk which are made in Murshidabad. Sarees made in this method are typified by the large pallav with a large pattern swirling outwards.

The Tanchoi weaves of Gujarat: These are satin weaves in which the extra weft floats are merged in.

The Kancheepuram weaves of Tamil Nadu: Kancheepuram sarees are spun with fine silk in which the borders are in contrasting colours as those on the pallav. These have a variety of motifs in zari such as the malli moggu, rudraksham, and gopuram. There are other locations in Tamil Nadu like Arni, Tanjore, and Dharmavaram which are famous for their fabrics.

With his handy guide at your disposal, you can now decide on sourcing one or more of these local weaves from different parts of the country and set up an online store on Amazon. Register in a few clicks and go online with your unique offering. Take inspiration from Christie Jobin and let your customers witness beautiful drapes from all over the country.

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