Kerala handloom gets a make over

Thiruvananthapuram, Dec 20 : A clothing line crafted entirely from Kerala handloom and specializing in ethnic wear for women will be launched here Sunday.

Hornbill, the new brand, is an outcome of the joint venture 'Operation Phoenix' between The People's Company, a social entrepreneurship based start-up in the capital city and the Kerala government, to revive the state's ailing handloom sector where more than 50,000 traditional weavers are struggling to survive.

"Hornbill's first limited edition is represented by 20 exquisite designs by leading designers. Initially comprising 60 garments, the clothing line is defined by intricate hand embroideries and blocks, to glistening bead works, and tailored to perfection," said Ashik Salim, CEO of The People's Company.

The People's Company is the brainchild of six young people - all graduates from the College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram (CET).

Hornbill brings the fabrics woven from the highest quality silk and cotton from the looms of Mayyil in Kannur and Balaramapuram in Thiruvananthapuram.

The Hornbill collection also features cotton silk, a fabric developed on a market scale for the first time by Kerala Handlooms.

"The government has high hopes for the Hornbill brand. This limited edition exclusive handloom collection would be top notch both in its make and quality," said State Industries top official P.H.Kurien.

"It's time we have a competent textile brand for ourselves from Kerala...Hornbill will become yet another milestone for Kerala to boast about in the future," added Kurien.

As part of Operation Phoenix, The People's Company will integrate all weavers' societies into a single production system and create linkage between new generation fashion designers passing out of national institutes, and traditional weavers, with the larger goal of breathing fresh life into the industry.

--IANS (Posted on 20-12-2013)

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