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Traditional Linen Fabrics Weaving and Handloom Cluster of Bhagalpur, India

In-depth study into Traditional Bhagalpur Linen Fabric Weaving and Handlooms

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This guide explores traditional craft clusters from Bhagalpur, India, its organization, working, peculiar methods of weaving, handloom processes, and the industry constraints, in conjunction with textile and allied products.

Introduction to Linen Fiber and Fabrics


Linen is that the most ancient vegetable material within the history of man. It had been vital to ancient Egyptian society, revered by the tribes of Israel, made in twelfth-century Ireland, and these days has several well-established markets throughout Western Europe.

The fiber has integrated itself among society as a luxury material likewise as a utilitarian tool, used for sailcloth, fishing nets, and ropes.

Linen’s enduring history parallels the sturdiness of the fibers themselves, the sole fiber that’s stronger wet than dry. Generally, linen yarn is plain-woven into lightweight and middle-weight material and used for shirts, trousers and different outer clothes.

It’s additionally used for a few ornamental functions – table runners and suchlike – and smaller utility things, like napkins and handkerchiefs. It’s another one amongst those ancient materials we’ve had since past times.

Linen Composition

Linen could be a sustainable material made of flax fibers. The flax plant has been cultivated in mere about each country within the world and has been accustomed create fiber for over 6,000 years.

To extract the fibers, the plants are either cut or dragged by hand from the bottom (it’s said that dragging creates finer linen).

Winnowing or ripping are the methods used for separating the seeds and the plant stocks are separated from the fibers through retting process.

After the separation of fibers, they’re then spun into yarn then finally woven into fabric.

Benefits of Linen

  • It can obtain up to twenty fifth of its weight in water.
  • Less seemingly to clutch the skin as a thicker fabric would.
  • As it dries out it becomes cool and billows, therefore the skin is regularly being touched by a cool surface, good for hot, humid, and dry weather.
  • Linen does not stretch and is immune to abrasion.
  • Very sturdy and robust, one among the few fabrics that’s stronger wet than dry.
  • Resistant to moths and carpet beetles.
  • It resists dirt and stains and can be taken easily care of.
  • It can stand up to high temperatures with only moderate initial shrinkage.

What Is Loom?


It is a type of device which is used in weaving and making tapestry, the basic purpose of the loom is to hold onto the warp threads under tension so that the interweaving with the weft threads can be done easily.

There are many types of looms such as Automatic and Manual looms which also has several sub divisions based on the design and principle of working.

Type of Looms



In, hand looms the threads are hunged from a picket piece or branch to an appendant to the bottom.

Then weft threads are manually shoved in position or pushed through a rod that additionally becomes a shuttle. Raising and lowering every warp thread one by one is required during the start which is done by inserting a rod making a shack, the gap between warp threads are made so that threads can  traverse in total promptly without any issues.

Backstrap Loom

backstrap loom

This loom consist 2 sticks or bars between which warps are stretched, one bar is hooked up to a set object and the other one to the weaver, sometimes by means of a strap round the back.

Then the weaver leans back and uses his/her weight to create tension in the loom. It works in such a way with the help of the weight of a weaver such that 2 main measured squared sheds is operated in a way so that the shed is rolled over to the previous set of warps and it passes through it without any hindrance.

backstrap loom

Frame Loom

frame loom

Frame looms nearly have the similar mechanism to that of the ground looms. This type of loom is made up of rods and panels which are mounted at 90 degree so that the overall construction of the loom is closer in resemblance to that of a box which makes it easier to handle and manage for the weaver. This type of loom still has a huge impact and is very popular among the weavers because of the cheap input and machinery cost and the portability it has which makes it more handy for the weavers.

Automatic Loom

automatic loom

It is a type of loom which is mechanized and is always operated by the help of electricity. There are different types of loom which are mainly based on conventional power loom and the other one is the modern power loom which consists.

  1. Water Jet Loom
  2. Water Jet Loom
  3. Rapier Loom
  4. Projectile Loom

Floor Loom

parts of loom parts of loom

Big looms which rests directly onto the floor and is operated with the help of foot pedals which is known as treadles which are responsible for opening and closing the sheds (the separations which are there in the warp created temporarily) by raising and lowering the harness.  Some of the floor looms are poor in terms of portability and are upto 100 inches wide area wise.

Pit Loom

pit loom

‘Pit Loom’ is a type of loom which is fitted in a pit where the artisan makes the weave with the use of pedals, In working it simulates the handloom and the only difference is its size & height. It is called a pit loom because of the pit below the loom, which is used for shedding operation. The space or gap between the two layers of the warp threads is called shed. A shed is produced by means of healds or harnesses. The warps are maintained in tension between two beams between healds are used with help of two levers, these healds are connected with two paddles situated the pit, which are used for the shedding. Wefts are inserted manually inside the shed. The warp threads are divided into two layers or parts one above the other, for the passage of the shuttle with a pick of weft.

pit loom

On a horizontal ground loom, the warp would be strung between two rows of pegs. The weaver would lean over in order to work, so pit looms were developed, with the warp strung over a pit, to let the weave his or her legs positioned below and leveled with the loom.

Sourcing of Linen Yarn

linen yarn

  • Mainly artisan source their yarn from the market in Bhagalpur for their work.
  • When weaver get their order from the supplier, according to the quantity and need the linen yarn is supplied to weaver by them.
  • Suppliers source their yarn from the big mills like Jayshree textiles mills in Kolkata.

linen dyeing preparatory process

Transformation of Yarn to Fabric

  • Yarn which is procured from market is soaked in water to remove the impurities like gum, dust particles etc.
  • Dyeing procedure takes place, where the yarns are dipped in dye of specific and required color shades.


  • The yarns are then dried on the bamboo beams under the natural sunlight.

linen yarn drying

  • After drying, it is being send to the supplier in the required amount lotwise.
  • The supplier then take the yarns to the weavers where the decision of design, cost etc. takes place.
  • Bobbin is filled one by one, majority by the female member present in the family.

handloom bobbin

  • Warping procedure takes place.

handloom warping

  • Reeds are filled.

handloom reeds

  • On the handloom yarns are placed according to the design required.
  • Weaving is done.

handloom weaving

  • Sent to Mahajan For Midway checking procedure (After 25m is done).
  • Defects which occur during the weaving process is being mended.
  • Washing and calendaring takes place, where heat setting of the fabric is done.


 After the preparatory process of dyeing of the yarn the artisan hands over the yarn to their family. Firstly, one of the members of the family (generally women) winds the thread onto the bobbin with the help of charkha so that it can be easily handled.

Then each warp thread is passed through reeds and rolled in warp wheel. Again, the thread is passed through the heddles and then through reeds which divides the warp yarn into two parts through which weft yarn passes. The warp beam is then taken to load onto the loom. It takes around 4-5 days to load the warp beam on a handloom.

Looms are equipped with dobbies for making motifs and designs. The designing is done and set in the dobby.

The bobbins are placed in a shuttle which carries the weft threads back and forth across the loom. The weavers use pedals to control the frames of the loom. Together the frames separate the warp threads. The weft yarn is passed through the space created between the warp threads. After every pass the weaver alternates the frames, interlacing the weft between the warp and then brings the weft threads close together with the help of a comb.

First a sample of 25-30 cm is prepared and then sent to the respective supplier/Mahajan for approval. Once the approval of the sample from the supplier is done the process of weaving is continued further.

Product Range

Linen offers an extensive range of luxury furnishing fabrics and upholstery fabric. From printed patterns, silks & satins, weaves vel- vets to textured effects the entire collection is beautifully weaved with style, sophistication and hard work of weavers. Weavers can also develop customised fabric as per the require- ment of the client.


bhagalpur sarees bhagalpur sarees

There are mainly three types of linen fabric production:

  • Linen fabric thaan/rolls (25m-30m)
  • Linen Sarees
  • Linen Dupattas/Shawls/stoles

These fabric can be turned into a variety of products mentioned below:

  • Women’s Wear Sarees
  • Printed Linen Saree Silk & Linen Saree
  • Pure Linen Bhagalpuri Saree (100% pure)

These sarees come in warp or weft based- linen is warp-based saree. For the warp and weft both, linen yarn is used and is called linen by linen. Other option is linen include: prime yarn, 30 to 40% khadi, cotton or silk. So When linen is combined with cotton, khadi, and silk sarees become softer.

Kurtas & Kurtis


  • Linen & Cotton Fabric Mix Handloom Linen Fabric
  • Accessories Stoles & Scarves Linen Dupatta
  • And other allied products

Men’s Wear

  • Top and bottom wear
  • Linen shirts
  • Thick linen Trousers


  • Linen Shirting fabric Linen suiting fabric Linen trouser fabric

Home Furnishing

bhagalpur table mats

  • Cushion covers Sofa covers Curtains
  • Bhagalpuri Chadars Coasters
  • Table mats
  • Linen shirts
  • Thick linen Trousers
  • Cushion covers Sofa covers Curtains Bhagalpuri Chadars Coasters


Curtains and other home furnishings give an excellent look to any interior and also add up to the beauty! A wide range of curtains are available in plethora of colors & elegant finishes that are engineered to perfection and style.

Post-Weaving Process

  • When a bulk of 25-30 m is completed then the weaver hands it over to the supplier.
  • After the supplier receives the fabric from the weavers inspection of the fabric is done.
  • If any defect is found it’s mending is done and the extra thread is trimmed from the fabric.
  • Then the finished fabric is washed and dried. At the end calendaring process is done in which the fabric is passed between two calendar rollers at high temperatures and pressures which removes the stiffness and makes the fabric quite soft and increases the luster.

Practiced Weaves and Designs

handloom weaving practices

linen checks and stripes
Linen checks and stripes
linen plain fabric
Linen plain fabric
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