Rukmini Ray Kadam
Founder – Trumatter
Aadyam Handwoven’s Trendloom 2021 will make you rethink handloom And if you have one design book to read, make it this
...and if you have one design book to read, make it this
Growing up, and especially during this time of the year- right before Durga Puja, the house would be abuzz with words like Phulia’r taant, dhakai jamdani, Bomkai, Tussar, Muga, Sambhalpuri and Tanchoi. My mom’s saree buying was a thing and she would spend hours buying sarees for herself and relatives from her chosen few boutiques in Kolkata (I think it was Anukool in Gol Park) who would bring in “special” handloom sarees from the lengths and breadths of the country. She would sit on the white “gadda” run her hands through the fabric of the sarees, see the pallu as the shopkeeper would drape it around him and talk passionately about it- discussing the pros and cons- a world changing discussion interrupted only by “cha” in “matir bhar”. And you couldn’t contest her by saying, it’s just a saree. She will put her sleeves up to tell you how a fabric is hand embroidered, where it came from, who brought it to the forefront- as if wearing a story; draping herself in 9 yards of history.
Yards of woven Ikkat would be bought and sent to the tailor to sew into bed sheets and pillow covers, and Lepcha handloom and lace would fulfill their fate of becoming pretty cushions! Tea tree trunks would become tables and old tant sarees would sway gently as sheers. As a child, the process filled me with just joy. And as an adult, it fills me with sheer nostalgia and gratefulness for the love of handloom that she inculcated in us.
Today, when I pick a saree from her cupboard or take out the old Benarasi cushion covers she sewed from an old blouse piece- one which smells of time and moth balls- I cannot help but habitually appreciate two things: her impeccable taste and how handloom seamlessly like water, molds to time.
Her sarees were relevant in 1970. It is relevant in 2021. Those cushion covers were relevant in a 90s exposed wood décor and its relevant in my farmhouse style décor where it brings in just the right intensity of shimmer without looking dated or ambitious.
Not many things in the world can evade time-and-trend but Handloom!
Truly, though Handloom has always been the new black.
There is something so authentic and classic about things from the loom. Almost like that little black dress. And yet, change the context in which it is to shine and the whole dialogue changes.
A Tanchoi cushion can toggle from Indian ethnic to Parisian to high glam if you treat it right. Then, of course, we have Kutchi weaving, where in the checkered patterns can fit like a glove in a farmhouse style neutral décor! And I am forever so intrigued to see how our handloom finds expression in a gamut of styles and genres, sitting there looking like a million bucks. It is this love for seeing quintessentially Indian craft in an ever changing setting that made me start #IndiaChic on Instagram where I document our craft forms in a very non-traditional, minimal setting, so imagine my joy when I chanced upon Trendloom.
That captures this dialogue between handloom and the ever changing times.
Trendloom 2021 is a design guidebook- or a guide, if you may- which aspires to educate and inculcate the love for handloom through themes that we find relevant today. Unlike a trend-book that gives you a summary of what’s in trend, Trendloom 2021 brings out the best of classic crafts chiseled to work in current times, all the while keeping art, artisans and the overall sentiment of the time at its core. It’s a much more personal approach to lifestyle than just being trendy.
The organic change that has happened and is happening in our lifestyle every day is bound to influence the design decisions we take. Trendloom 2021 shows us how to coherently fit handloom in this transformation and the many ways we can express ourselves through the same.
An annual property, Trendloom 2021 encases trend directions, inspirations that one can draw from, colors and palettes, fibers to look for, inspired textures and products that serve as testimony to all the above.
It comes as no surprise that the Trendloom 2021 edition is all about Conscious, Sustainable, Nostalgia, Slow & Personal
These past two years have been years of countless firsts- especially when it comes to emotions and feelings. And above all, what was common was the need to connect. To nature, to our roots, our souls, our happiness and the earth around us in general. From feeling trapped at home to making our home a fabric for expression, from reminiscing old world textiles that made us feel cocooned and cozy to being plant parents- these two years have brought in us a metamorphic shift. And we are choosing as we are evolving and evolving as we are choosing.
Trendloom 2021 brings about 7 broad themes to explore- Sand, Metal, Clay, Cultivate, Symbiotic, Roots & Soul, all of which together encapsulates our collective feelings in the recent past and examines products, fibers, textures and colors that could embalm, delight, nurture and console.
From a neutral heavy but precision led Sand inspired guide to bright hues borrowed from our age old tapestries in Soul, from imbibing nuances, patterns and textures from nature in Symbiotic that allows us the luxury of fine fabric to bringing our rich textiles like Dobby jacquard and Zari as they were intended to be but in a modern form in Cultivate- this design guidebook makes one richer.
If you thought handloom is only Khadi and people in Bengal wear them, this is your eye opener. And if you are like who knows handloom like it is supposed to be known, this will be that rich repository of brilliant ideas that’ll make you take a moment and rethink handloom.
And I strongly think we should give ourselves that chance.
Aadyam Handwoven and I go back a long way. I was first introduced to this socially responsible brand in 2018 when I ran an interactive creative workshop for them and fellow craft & design connoisseurs. Since then, I have watched the brand with admiration and pride, as they have grown and expanded their portfolio of beautiful handwoven products from select craft clusters in India.
Working directly with weaver communities, Aadyam Handwoven’s creative team is focused on reviving and encouraging traditional weaving techniques and skills. They work with skilled handloom artisans in Varanasi, Pochampally and Bhuj, with a passion for preserving our rich textile heritage, as well as to create a self-sustaining ecosystem for the weavers by introducing them to contemporary designs and product interpretations. Aadyam Handwoven’s current repertoire of stunning handwoven products range from home furnishing like rugs, cushions, table runners to wearable art in the form of stoles and saris.
The latest labor of love from Aadyam Handwoven is their collaborative effort with India Craft Week, where they have researched to seek and define inspiration and the resulting trends, from certain key parameters that encompass not just progressive design philosophy, but also critical components like sustainability, conscious consumption and green living. The result of this thoughtful effort is a design guidebook, called Trendloom 2021 , which is already being widely appreciated and leveraged by industry professionals and proponents of sustainable design and conscious living. I love how Trendloom 2021 helps not just professionals, but also any person with an orientation towards design thinking, throughout the creative cycle, from conception to creation.
Trendloom 2021 follows a very engaging and interesting flow of ideas. Beginning with drawing inspiration with what is around us [like sand, matter], to what is within us [like soul, roots] and also from wholesome ideology [like symbiotic, cultivate], the Trendloom 2021 goes on to ideate and define the colors, the yarns, the texture, the weave and the pattern, per inspiration. Bringing each trend to a logical and practical implementation are the recommended handlooms from Aadyam Handwoven’s craft clusters. Experiencing the seamless flow of thought in the Trendloom 2021 , from a seemingly amorphous inspiration to an actual textile or product that we can bring into our homes, is a delightful experience.
In the words of Manish Saksena, the Lead Advisor at Aadyam Handwoven: In the first edition of Trendloom 2021 , Aadyam Handwoven and India Craft Week have attempted to highlight the overarching trending themes that organically create a cluster/craft connect. The endeavor is to continue this journey and get handwoven fabrics their much needed relevance across the globe.
It is so heartening to see Aadyam Handwoven’s dedicated focus on preserving and encouraging heritage crafts and skills, like handloom, by creating and establishing sustainable trends originating from curated craft clusters.
Aadyam Handwoven’s Trendloom 2021 is available for everyone to view and take inspiration from. It is especially useful for design professionals as they conceptualize the integration of inspiration, matter, and material for their projects.
Apart from this design guidebook, Aadyam Handwoven’s beautiful collaborative product range with the various weaver communities is available online, as well as in select locations in India. They do also ship worldwide, and are happy to work with individuals and professionals for bespoke design and production.
I am looking forward to bring more of Aadyam Handwoven’s creative endeavors in the coming future! More power to brands that are socially responsible and committed to preserving our heritage and artisan livelihood, in a sustainable and thoughtful manner.
You rise only by lifting others along with you. There is no other way
I believe a utopian world is when there is gender equality and no gender roles.
I am grateful to be born as a women. Would not have it any other way
Artist/Décor Blogger & Handloom/Textile Collector
It was a pleasure to work with Aadyam and I absolutely loved Aadyam and the beautiful products created under it. Being a textile designer, I have a very special regard for the Handlooms and Textiles of India and the more I see of how the traditions and techniques are being revived and given an edge by imbibing the present day design ethos, the more fascinated I get by how things have evolved over a period of time.
At Aadyam I particularly liked the use of different colour schemes, which are unusual to say the least. The attention to details, the patterns and designs, speak very highly of the process of creating high end, sophisticated products, keeping in mind the global trends and demands. The mint green Ikat runner is one such piece; an unusual colour, with a lovely pattern, which blends seamlessly with the other things in the room, but also maintains its own identity. Thank you so much for this beautiful piece!