Traditional Linen Fabrics Weaving and Handloom Cluster of Bhagalpur, India
In-depth study into Traditional Bhagalpur Linen Fabric Weaving and Handlooms
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.
An Untold Story of Gulam Quadir
Today the society consists of various member weavers and workers, hailing from the villages who are widely dispersed around town. This can be jotted down that predominantly men sit at the looms, the bulk of pre- loom work is carried out by women and the other family members.
Around 15 of the most experienced members are Master Weavers – those who are capable to weave more complicated patterns or hard to handle yarns, who innovate with modern fibres, designs, and strategies, and who can equip the younger weavers.
Working from 10 to 6 every day with night shifts too sometimes, weavers’ earnings are set by the amount of piece work or the length of the fabric produced.
At 60 years of age, he is a master weaver who has 45 years of weaving knowledge behind him. Jointly with his wife and other family members he lives on the society compound, weaving by day.
Gulam Quadir took a weaving training course when he was young from his ancestors and now specializes in the more difficult weaves – he weaves linen and linen- silk blends, as well as jamdanis. He is fond of creating new designs to in the market and always keen to learn something out of the box. Recently he enrolled in the jacquard training to enhance his skills.
In a conversation with Gulam Quadir, we got to know that the work has declined since the lockdown period with prior clients cancelling orders too. Quadir shows huge disappointment considering the decline in buyers.
He got pretty emotional and added that earlier it used to be one of the fine works in Bhagalpur and everyone used to get ‘n’ number of clients for weaving. Sometimes, clients used to pay double the amount for early delivery.
This implies that not merely is the handloom industry approaching a sluggish demise with the absence of new weavers, but also that age-old skill, like the complicated jamdani that Indians may still see in their grandmother’s saris, will dye out with the older weavers.
Even the number of weavers in the society who can weave linen – a more delicate and difficult fibre to work with and something that is not traditionally woven in India – is only a few.
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