Weaves of Kashmir  

Her niche Collector’s Collection that revolves around the age-old art of shawl making in Kashmir will be going to Hyderabad, Chandigarh and Mumbai.

Published: 17th October 2019 08:38 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th October 2019 08:38 AM   |  A+A-

Varuna Anand

Varuna Anand

Express News Service

After a two-day long Splendor of Kashmir exhibition by the founder and designer Varuna Anand, at the Imperial hotel and later at Gurugram,  Anand is all set to take the initiative across the country. Her niche Collector’s Collection that revolves around the age-old art of shawl making in Kashmir will be going to Hyderabad, Chandigarh and Mumbai.

Anand has been promoting the art of Kashmiri shawl making since 2011 and brings forth luxury collection of intricately worked and extensively embroidered hand-woven shawls. “Many try to modernise this classic art with its history spanning for over 300 years. However, we want to promote classical patterns through our heirloom collection. For our corporate gifting, we have shawls that we innovate with colours and little weaving techniques.” The heirloom collection offers the finest Kani shawls and hand embroidered Jamavar shawls. It symbolises the living heritage, which can be passed on to their loved ones as family heirlooms.

Over the past eight years, Anand carried on the traditional work because people started believing that there was no craftsmanship of that caliber. “Being a Delhi girl, I experienced the same because I never witnessed such craft. Now that I live in Jammu and Kashmir, and have had the right exposure, I wanted others to know that this art is still an integral part of the cottage industry and is flourishing,” says Anand, who moved to Jammu and Kashmir in 2002 after her marriage.

“Since the start of my journey it has been difficult to explain that cutting bits of an old shawl and placing it on a new one doesn’t make it antique. Also, there is no concept of antique border because once a scissor touches the antique shawl, its value is over,” she adds. Carving a niche for herself, she is all set to exhibit her work across the country.

Once there is a mention of Kashmir, it becomes inevitable not to ask how the current situation has affected the industry. “Work per say is affected over there. We may have the yarn as it comes from Ladakh but we need people to sort and weave them. At the moment it’s not happening. We are hoping for peace and for the situation to be resolved. Without being political, I would say change always requires time to settle down.”


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