Ikat Art presents a contemporary take on the traditional weave

Something as commonplace as a refrigerator top cover transforms into an appealing work of art. A layer of foam sandwiched between two layers of handloom cloth with the storage pockets at the sides outlined by bright ikat weaves is one of the simple value additions you get at the ongoing exhibition of ikat fabrics and furnishings at the Pochampally Silks and Sarees store, Tilak Road, Abids. In colours of olive green, deep maroons and purples, the refrigerator covers come at Rs. 150. “It’s a value buy, but we still have customers haggling for a lower price. We end up explaining to them about the art of ikat,” says one of the store employees.

The exhibition puts forth textiles from the Pochampally Handloom Park, sold under the label Ikat Art. On sale are saris and salwar sets (silks and cottons), yardage, bed linen, furnishings, travel bags, stoles and scarves. The products of Ikat Art are rugged and unpredictable, something that’s synonymous with hand-woven fabric. The saris vary from everyday wear to prized possessions with simple ikat patterns to double-ikat weaves. The borders with woven patterns contrast the body of the sari. Expect to see checks, geometric patterns, birds and floral weaves. There are saris that take off on the traditional teliya rumal weave as well. The saris are priced between Rs. 2000 and 8000.

The salwar sets in silk are priced around Rs. 4000 – 4500. “The fabric for salwar, kameez and dupatta is woven on three different looms and you need 7.5 metres as against 6 metres for a sari,” explains a store employee. In colours of ochre, mustard yellows, bottle greens, deep reds and magentas, there’s something for everyone.

Cotton stoles at Rs. 500 to 600 and silk ikat stoles at around Rs. 2000 to 2500 are pick-me-ups and can be teamed with both Indian and western silhouettes.

The exhibition is on till July 6.

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