We believe in using natural fabrics because we don't want our clothes to be made from fossil fuels. We believe in supporting artisanal processes like block printing and hand-knotted tie-dye. Founded on the principles of integrity, respectful design practices and care, we strive to make clothes that feel as good ethically as they do aesthetically.
Where We Produce:
Our clothing line is produced in India, a country with a rich textile history. Our factory is in Gurgaon, close to Delhi. Delhi and Jaipur are home to many of the oldest block printing facilities, and we are committed to the preservation of this ancient printing technique.
Amy has always had a love of textiles, and she began collecting antique fabrics when she was very young. After going to college for textiles, she continued to amass a collection of printed cloth from all over the world. As she learned more about printing methods she began to gravitate towards the beautifully hand-done art of block printing. We hope to help in some small way with keeping this ancient printing method alive, through bringing the technique to contemporary women’s wear.
How it works:
- A block is prepared - A block of soft wood that is at least 2” thick is used. The maximum size for a block is usually around 8” x 8”, and the artisan draws or transfers the design onto the block. The designs are carved with knives and chisels, and for circular impressions a bow-type tool is uses to spin the tool, creating perfect spheres.
- Multiple blocks are created for each color - A separate block will need to be carved for each color used in a design. It is most common for designs to include 3-6 colors, but more complex artwork can sometimes use up to 12 colors!
- Prepping the space + blocks - Fabric is stretched onto long, padded tables (the length of the tables determine the yardage that can be printed at one time). The blocks are soaked in water to soften them, and inks are mixed and spread out onto leather trays in thin and even layers. Each tray sits on top of a cart on wheels that can be easily moved throughout the space as the printing progresses.
- Printing - The block is dipped lightly onto the ink tray (similar to patting a stamp on a stamp pad) and then carefully aligned above the fabric. Once the artist is confident the placement is correct, the block is gently set down onto the fabric and tapped to get a good ink impression. Then the block is pulled up off the fabric, carefully so as not to smudge the artwork. This is repeated again and again across the fabric, in either straight or half-drop patterns. Once all of one color layer is completed the fabric is allowed to dry. Then the process is repeated with the next color(s).
Our factory is female owned and operated. The sewing happens in a spacious in-house factory - sampling, cutting, sewing and finishing all happen in the same building. Workers are provided with ample space and standard working hours, are over the age of 18 and work in a socially compliant environment.
We choose to work with natural fibers. Natural fibers are a renewable resource, and can be replenished over time. Crops can continue to be harvested and animal fibers can be grown and shorn each year. Natural fibers are also biodegradable - decomposing as bacteria and fungi doing their magic. Synthetically produced fibers are difficult to dispose of and require incineration to be recycled. Plant based fibers like cottons and linens can be carbon neutral. They absorb a similar amount of CO2 as they release.
Non-Profit Partner of the Quarter: The Kranti Project