When you see an exquisitely woven sari or stole your first reaction would perhaps be: “What weaving technique has been used?” Weaving is a highly specialised skill, and few know about the painstaking efforts that weavers put in. Sarita Ganeriwala, owner of the Kolkata-based Karomi Crafts and Textiles, who has worked closely with weavers in West Bengal, explains the intricacies of the Jamdani, an indigenous weaving technique in Bengal: “I employ the Jamdani technique for most of my apparel. It is often referred to as ‘embroidery on the loom’, but it is a complex weaving technique
“In Jamdani, the weaver simultaneously inserts patterns during the warp and weft process, which is a continuous procedure that is labour intensive as well as highly skill driven. In fact, women’s understanding of Jamdani colour and pattern are better than male weavers.”
Sarita will display her range of saris, stoles, dupattas and tunics from today till September 18. Karomi products are all hand-woven, hand-embroidered and hand-block printed. Sarita uses natural fibres and dyes.
“Our apparel is primarily woven on four-shaft looms, and occasionally on six-shaft looms” explains Sarita, who is a graduate from the Baroda College of Art and NIFT, Delhi.
Sarita, with her sister Sarika Ginodia, set up Karomi Crafts and Textiles in 2007. “Sarika is a Chartered Accountant who handles the business of Karomi and I deal with the design aspect.”
Sarita, guided by passion and an urge to do something different, moved to Kolkata and began work with one weaver, who lived four hours away from the city. Within six years, Sarita has taken Karomi places, literally. “We have been invited to exhibit our products by the Delhi Crafts Council and FabIndia is one of our patrons.”
Sarita likes to work with earthy colours, which include rusts, mustards, chocolates, reds, indigos and aquas. “Occasionally, you might find stray prim-rose yellow, but a more toned-down version. At times, I combine off-white against say, a bright red background. A basic signature runs through all the products.”
Asked why she chose Bangalore to display her products, Sarita quips: “Why not Bangalore? The people here are very open to new ideas. Also, Bangaloreans are trend setters, not followers. They are open to experimentation.”
There will be a Karomi Crafts and Textiles exhibition from September 15 till 18 at Basava Ambara, number 93, Kanakpura Road, next to New Generation School, Basavangudi from 10.30 a.m. to 7 p.m. For details call 26561940. The price of the products range from Rs. 1,200 to Rs. 13,000 to Rs. 14,000.