Tuesday, January 5, 2010

HANDLOOMS...OUR ANCIENT CRAFT

This Sunday i went to a hand loom exhibition going on in a govt college in front of Taj Connemara.I always feel that handlooms are a special craft of India, and we must do everything to save them, so whenever i get a chance I go and buy. and it is not that we are compromising, their products are good, with natural dyes and provide employment to rural population.So in one stroke we are benefit ting many. Through my blog I urge you to think about this. Whenever any upmarket boutique opens and advertise saying that they are environment friendly etc, people flock to them buying those exorbitant pieces, but here we get everything at such a reasonable price, but since it is without any pomp and show we dont realise their value. Their cottons are so soothing to the skin, rates are so friendly to the pocket.

I bought dining table cover only for 120/...and same for nighties, towels, table mats, there were Banarasi kota saris , very good for summer..very comfortable and beautiful ones from 1600/-. onward and paper silk embroidered sarees were very beautiful and only for 2500/- ..I liked one sari which was on display, rather two, but he refused to sell them, now I am going to their shop in Egmore and chk if it is available there.I request all of you to give a thought and try to buy their products..it will be a step towards saving environment and helping our countrymen and their craft.

Yesterday I read two articles by Menaka Gandhi, she may not be a succesful politician, but I admire her convictions for environment and animals. She always advocates that milk was not meant for us and it doesnt benefit us in anyway.For the synthetic milk, she says we can recognise by putting litmus paper , in real milk blue litmus paper turns red and in synthetic it doesnt. I thought of sharing this with you all. She has written a list of products which contain melamine and shouldnt be bought and any product which says..protein enhanced..must be avoided. When I read the article, I felt so sad that what the world has come to..so much adulteration is there, that sometimes I think we must try to use packaged food as little as possible.

I have started plants in my balcony with the organic waste of my kitchen and will keep updating you with the results and if the experiment is successful, I will suggest you all to do it..we will get greenery and some vegetables at no extra cost and totally organic.

I am thinking of not buying any purse or bag in pure leather anymore, when there are so many good things available in alternate materials then why not?....

This time in our apartments New Year was celebrated and very well managed..some of the residents put the stall for eatable from 7pm to 8 pm and then we had cultural programme where the residents and children put up a grand show with orchestra and all. I liked this idea of everything done by the residents..everyone got to have good food at reasonable prices and wholesome and clean fun and entertainment without spending a bomb....only thing I missed was bollywood songs, wish they had included one or two.

I saw Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani.....good, but quite a rehash of old films, but Ranbeer and Katrina made it worth a watch..Raj kumar santoshi seems to have made an old film only the main couple revived it

30 comments:

Dreamer said...

Happy New Year, Renu. And thanks for the info. I did not know that melamine was to be avoided. I can assure you that organic kitchen waste does wonders for plants! I have a semi-decent garden myself. I've been wanting to see Ajab Prem..myself but not got around to it. Not a major fan of Katrina, but I do think Ranbir is quite good.

Jayashree said...

Nice that you got to celebrate New Year's at your apartment.

Renu said...

Dreamer:.Melamine is added to the food products made in certain countries and its very harmful.

katrina is ok but Ranbir is really excellent every time.

jayashree..yeah we had a nice celebration, though I was late for snacks and came back early because next dayw as working for my husband.

manju said...

Buying handloom materials is a good idea- I often buy from Handloom House here in Mumbai. They have a sale every year for a month after Gandhi Jayanti when we can get good materials for very low prices.

I have not yet tried growing plants with organic kitchen waste- that is a good idea, too.

Shrutzz said...

Again wishing you happy new year!!!
Hmm..nice shopping ( WINK!)

hey Renu, I need to start reading anout Menaka Gandhi, interesting things to know!!! I have decided to be nature concious this yr..

Am waiting to hear about your experiment on Organic waste..This is in my wish list, but will start in few yrs down the lane ( I have some restrictions at home now)

Go Green!!!!
Great yr ahead!!!

Balvinder Singh said...

Renu, thanks for sharing valuable tips. Yes i also had started a terrace garden when i was in calcutta with the help of kitchen waste mixed in the soil. It had come up very well. These small thoughtful habits can go a long way in ensuring our own good health as well that of our earth for our coming generations.

A rebel all the way... said...

Handloom is a good idea.
I don't agree with Maneka though. :P
Am a pakka carnivore.
Have (unsuccessfully) tried a number of times to turn vegetarian, but when you are living outside India, it becomes SO difficult.

Renu said...

Manju:..I have always been a handloom person:)..even used to buy agarbaattis, shampoo etc from Gandhi bhandaar.

I read so many times about this use of kitchen waste, first time I am trying:)earlier we had a ground floor flat wwith lawn and it was different..lets see:)

Shrutzz:..I did lot of shopping:)...but just one salwar kameez material, rest for the home:)

Even I have a small balcony with no sunlight:(..lets see how my experiment goes...

Read Maneka Gandhi only as an environmentalist, you will enjoy , forget that she is a politician and what did she do.

Balvinder: You are not in Calcutta now?....My family is fed up of my savings of paper and water etc:)..but what to do, it is so deeply ingrained in me:)

Rebel : More than half the world is carnivore and it comes easily to me to be a vegetarian, because I have never eaten non veg..so I am not sacrificing anything.

Having said that i would say that wherever you live you can follow anything you want:)..my husband lived in france for a year in 70's when nothing much Indian was available there, but he lived:)..but follow only if you believe in this.

Why dont you like maneka? do you find her views wrong?

Swetha Guptha said...

handlooms are real facinations to me too...u mentioned abt leather, jute bags are nice alternatives. Now a days they are available in facy varieties and are very colorful. I mostly get jute bags have big fan following for my bag selection ;)

Amrita said...

Even i lovee handloom stuff, they look so elegant... nothing can match. And each one is unique and exclusive without being exhorbitantly priced. Wish there were more people like you to save the industry.

And wow!! new celebrations.. sahi hai. Our apartment is a bit dull when it comes to celebration with the avg age group of the residents being close to 55 :( There are only a couple of people under 30 for that matter :(

I did nt like APKGK .. somehow it was too predictable..and the jokes were nt that great either. Yea the lead pair was fresh.

Renu said...

Swetha Gupta:..yes , now in jute one gets lot of apealing colors and variety..even hyderabadi bags are very beautiful.

handlooms always look classy and i am happy to know that young people also like these things

sindhu said...

Happy New Year Renu...have not been very prompt in reading, so sorry for that, but will do so now. Work and everything has been hectic...
What you wrote about the handloom industry is really true, we should do something which is within our means and so many are benefiting fron this industry too!

L. Venkata Subramaniam said...

Sometimes we go so green with some things and red with others. Its nice that you have a kitchen garden! Watching over plants can be so relaxing.

Sandhya said...

I visited the exhibition, last Saturday. Bought some beautiful bedsheets, towels etc. Yes, the sarees were beautiful. Did you notice the posters of the vegetables and plants they use for dying the sarees? I wear mostly cotton sarees. I love kota sarees.

Organic garden, nice. I have got an organic manure pit and I use that manure for my plants too.

I have stopped eating seasonal fruits too. I get ulcers in my mouth.

Nice post.

Renu said...

SindHu Welcome back!..This is what i say that there are few things which are covenient and good for our country, at least we can be a little patriotic here and kind to humanity also.

Wish you too a very happy and prosperous New Year !!!

L.Venkat Raman:..I try as much as I can within my capacity to remain green:)..and I just love greenery.

Sandhya: Even I went there on sunday only, but we didnt meet, may be we went at different times.

making a vermipit is the best way to use organic waste.

you mean to say ..You dont eat any fruits?

HaRy!! said...

hmmm very true... we tend to forget what we are and what our tradition is!! My grandpa talks abt handlooms endlessly !!!

Renu said...

HaRy:..I would be happy the day instead of Grandpas, grandsons start talking about that:)

I ask my hubby to wear kurta pyjama in the house, may keep western for outings.

Sorcerer said...

wonderful post.

me and some of my friends wear handloom.its not just saving an industry its being ethnic :)

Renu said...

Sorcerer: Thanks!..I am very happy to know that you like, even I like it.

Tomz said...

I am happy that the handloom craft fair you attended made to think about making some new year resolutions regarding the return to nature.

Smitha said...

A very happy new year to you too!

Handlooms are really wonderful to wear. You are right, most of us seem to forget it these days. The funny thing is, here abroad, they sell 'organic cotton' - which I am sure is quite similar to handloom.

As for the organic waste being used in the garden - my mom has been doing this for years and swears on it. She has a lovely kitchen garden and grows some lovely flowers too -and she uses total organic methods of gardening. Do let us know how it turns out - am sure it would be a success.

Renu said...

Tomz: >>Its the other way round..I care for the handlooms, thts why i went. Whenevr there is an exhibition even anywhere near us, I make it a point to buy from there:)

Smitha:..Yes Handlooms look most elegant, and I like all our original crafts like Kantha, Tangail,kalamkaari, fulkari, kaanchivaram, and I have all of them only:)

I salute you mother..she is a ral environment friendly person.Way back in late 70's Ihad independent house, there i had a full fledged kitchen garden which was envy of all our collegues:)

Sparkling said...

You know what? I've to visit Chennai soon to shop all the stuff you're talking about. I'm sure my mom and I are gonna dig all the stuff!

I'm glad to read that you'd a good New Year's. Btw, a very happy new year to you :)

Renu said...

Sparkling: tell me when are you coming here:)...Chennai is good for shopping:)

A happy new year to you to? what did you do in your new house?

SG said...

Nice post. I understand now some of the things in India.

I have lived most of my life here in USA. May be the way I was brought up and my surroundings make me think differently. This is not a smart-alec question. But a genuine one. Here is my question:

Why should we go out of the way and support an industry or craft because they are our country people. If they produce a quality product at affordable price, everyone will rush to buy their products. May be handloom industry produces quality products. On our next visit we sure will buy some of them.

Renu said...

SG: good question !

If they produce a quality product at affordable price, everyone will rush to buy their products...this is commercialisation.

we must support it because....

this is an special craft of our country and our culture our heritage and it must be saved like we do with heritage buildings, we dont demolish them and make new ones.

This craft is the livelihood of many of our rural couyntrymen and we must not deprive them.

This is a environment friendly bussiness model.

These same things are being marketed in an upmarket model by designers and lapped up by the riches, so why not buy at the base and help not so privileged, rather than increasing the coiffures of riches.

If we always og with economics, then after a certain period all the individuality will be lost, everybody will be wearing, making, and marketing the same things and then we will go for searching for some exotic new things.

PG said...

You are so right about it. Indian handloom is a tradition, which we, no doubt, should encourage by buying these products. It is beautiful, unique and yet so varied, depending on the regions where it comes from, very environment freindly. Loved your post and your comment.

Renu said...

PG:..I forgot to add in my last comment that anything unique must be preserved, like antique things..they get their value.

Thank you so much for the appreciation!

April said...

Renu, nice post on various topics. I love to buy from handloom house too and I really miss those oldie days of India. Living in foreign country we really are missing a lot of Indian cultural life and many more invaluable things.
I agree with you about buying handcraft items, this way we can (indirectly) help and encourage those poor artists who lives in really bad condition and don't get enough money of their skills. Oh!..My heart is melting now while writing.
Well, having my own kitchen garden idea has been long time due. Will try it asap. Here organics items are sold at bomb price.
Sorry for loooooong comment. But I wanted to pour my heart here.
Thank you! :)

Renu said...

April: good to see you back !..buying handlooms, if we do as charity also, then also its good as it is always better to help someone in living with dignity, rather than doling out money just like that as to beggars.

And I love long comments:)