Denims are every one's favorite. Handloom denims create an aura for
every fashion savvy environmentalist.
weaving by handlooms is one of the richest aspects of Indian culture and
heritage. The intricacy and artistry involved with these fabrics are
unsurpassed for their uniqueness. Handloom fabrics have a unique texture and
style unmatched by machine made fabrics. Apart from this, handloom fabrics are
made mainly using natural dyes which make the apparel eco-friendly.
are one of the strongest fashion trends. Complementing any body type, color,
and age, denim apparels rule the heart of every individual. In the world where
trends keep changing at the drop of a hat, one trend that stands the test of
time is denim. But some techniques used to process denim to go with fashion
trends are highly polluting and hazardous. The journey of denim apparels
involves numerous stages, and using many unfriendly chemicals. Techniques such
as sizing and mercerizing discharge harmful effluents. Dyeing of these fabrics
are done using synthetic dyes often made from coal or oil. Other techniques
such as sand blasting, engage processes that are hazardous to the workers
awareness among consumers and regulatory standards has increased the importance
for sustainable clothing. They are gradually getting into mainstream fashion
and consumer preferences. This trend, rather a necessity, has influenced the
making of denims also. Denim apparels and other accessories are made from
handloom denim fabrics.
recent development in the making of denim fabrics, handloom denims are much
softer than mill made denims in comparison. While talking about the virtues of
handloom denim fabrics, Mr. Rajesh Dudeja, Founder, DCI (Denim Club India),
says, "Denim made on handlooms is softer than mill made denim, has a
unique texture and breathes well and helps feel cool in summer and retain body
warmth in winter. Energy impacts of handloom denim being offered by Denim Club
India are almost zero, no energy is consumed either in the weaving processes or
in forms of transportation of weavers to their place of work, thus resulting in
a fabric with very low carbon footprint."
of the weavers play lovingly over the looms, unfolding the rare form of
artistry much similar to a symphony composed by a musician. Handloom denims are
different from mill-made denims in a way that it is made without using
motorized machines throughout all stages of production. Similar to industrial
processes, both warp and weft yarns pass through the same stages, but the
entire process is carried out manually.
Dudeja says they use mill-made cotton yarn, which they get in cone form. This
yarn is converted into hank form, which is then dyed in a cabinet dying
machine. During the entire process of making handloom denims, this is the only
stage when fuel is used. The dyed hanks are sized, manually by dipping them in
a solution. Later the sized yarn is reeled on bobbins, creeled, and a warp beam
is made. This beam is then mounted on the handloom for weaving. Similarly, the
weft yarn is reeled into pirns, on a hand based device. Production levels are
low, and are completely manual.
Dudeja enthusiastically explains about the wearability and durability of the fabric.
denim is a true eco-friendly fabric as it does not require any kind of chemical
washing post the weaving stage. The inherent softness and wearability of the
fabric eliminates the need for any kind of distressing or softening of the
fabric or garments and no use of harmful chemicals or acids is required at all.
Garments and other items made out of handloom denim can be used by infants,
kids and everyone with a soft and sensitive skin due to the fabric being
chemical free and soft. "
fabrics made from handlooms have all potential applications in par with mill
made denims. Attractive designer wears, garments, jackets, vests, rompers,
shorts, vests, shirts, school uniforms and other trendy fashion accessories can
be made from this fabric.
myths revolve around sustainable clothing choices, the first being that they
are way too expensive. Handloom denims are of superior quality, but are they economical
enough to fit into the customer's wallet? It is an undeniable fact that they
are expensive. When designers attempt to come up with a product that will
benefit the environment and the living beings, the cost of organic and eco
friendly raw materials prove to be expensive. Apart from that, these apparels
are currently not mass produced, which makes the process expensive.
Dudeja's views also support the same. He quotes, "The handloom denim
fabric is almost thrice the cost of mill made denim. The primary reason for
higher price being the higher time and manual effort required to weave denim on
handloom. On an average, a weaver can only manage to weave around 3.5 to 4
metres of denim fabric per day whereas an average automatic loom churns out
around 500 metres of fabric in a day. Over a period of time, when the volume of
production increases, the cost of production might go down slightly due to the
benefits of economy of scale. "
denims are a very recent development. With more customers opting for
sustainable clothing, handloom denims foresee a bright future. When asked about
the market potential of the handloom fabric Mr. Dudeja cheerfully quotes about
DCI's recent exhibition held on January 2012.
large number of people were attracted to the stall by the handloom denim
garments on display and most were amazed to learn that all the garments on
display had been made from authentic handloom denim and were highly
appreciative of the initiative."
are a couple of buyers who are very excited and interested in procuring the
handloom denim fabric. However, so far most of the denim fabric has been used
by Denim Club for converting into garments. The response received from buyers
in Europe, Japan and South Africa has been very encouraging. Denim Club India
will be showcasing a complete range of fabric, garments, bags & accessories
and home furnishing items made out of handloom denim in the upcoming InDIGO
2012 on 20-21 April, 2012 at Epicentre, Apparel House, Gurgaon, marking the
commercial launch of handloom denim made-ups."
India, a large number of traditionally skilled weavers are leaving their
profession due to lack of recognition, and demand. If handloom fabrics are
patronized, the traditional craft will flourish. Customer's increasing awareness,
and the resulting acceptance for sustainable products, and its growing demand
in domestic and international markets will bring denim fabrics into limelight.
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