THE PEELI DORI WOMAN

Who is she?

Outgoing and classy, the woman who understands herself, is the Peeli Dori woman. The generation you belong to does not define your attitude, rather it’s the confidence and awareness that you possess, it’s the poise that you have in your style, it’s the fun that you have in while you are being yourself, in your perfect attire for the day.

There are some common complications that one faces in her day to day life, and here are the answers to them, by a Peeli Dori woman.

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A great look can actually make your day.

But how do you define that great look for yourself? The definition varies with every individual since every woman on this earth is different with different set of values and understanding. A great look on any one is the real self of her own character. The origin of one can make her define her style, sometimes it is also the environment that makes one develop it. In short a lot of factors related to your personal character and personality are the reason you have a particular style.

And just in case you don’t have a personal style that clearly states that you somewhere lack an understanding of your own self. It is the right time to understand, define your likes and dislikes, get a reason for your actions and then initiate them. Only that can help you develop a personal style that you will feel comfortable in.

What should I wear today?

This is one question that will hover over your mind every morning when you are getting dressed for office and every time there is a special occasion that you have to attend. Wardrobe is filled of variety of clothes and is still empty. This is the feeling that every woman has come across at least once in the seven days of a week.

How to decide what to wear can only be answered when you know what looks good on you and not only the fact ‘what looks good to you’. The statement has a meaning to be understood deeply enough and it can surely turn around the way you dress up.

Awareness can be the next thing that is important and plays a major role in this process. You should be aware of what the trends are in, how and what kind of clothes are required to enhance your personality and which brands go along with the same. Going for something which is decent, smart and ‘in-trend’ is always the best idea. Mix and match some ethnics with a pair of denims and maybe a basic tee-top with a nice flared pant. It will give you that perfect look you aspire for.

Where can I wear ethnic?

The answer to this would be, ‘anywhere’. Yes, if the teaming up is rightly done, any nice bright kurta can make you look stunning even in an evening party. Wearing things the right way is the key. For this, one can look at a lot of styling options available online these days. They can be of great help. Best is to go for a modern silhouette in an ethnic style.

Understand the reason of your purchase.

We usually have a habit of buying things randomly without even thinking about the impact of that purchase. An action of purchasing something is not just related to your bank balance; rather it has a lot of other things which are being affected. One is the very aspect of where is it coming from, how is it made, why is it made that way, everything takes its place on the list.

So, think and analyse before you buy, because everything is an investment for you and if it is not, then don’t buy it.

Peeli Dori offers an exclusive collection for such a woman who is aware, and understands her style statement. She believes in her real-self and her simplicity. She is a modern woman with sustainable actions.

 

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A Modern Woman.

“I can openly talk about sex, and still have the conscience to decide smartly, which is worth experiencing it with. My words might have an influence of western vocabulary, but the thoughts behind them are still authentic to my traditions”.

With this very powerful statement, Miss Ishita Bajaj, takes all my bias towards her while interviewing her. A very strong yet elegant personality, with finely eye lined eyes, gracefully blinked after completing every statement. We started with a casual discussion about her lifestyle and her choices meanwhile also understanding her reasons of doing and adapting the same.

What her as a subject of interview is the question that might arise here?

She because,

…………She has a sense of power in her dressing, in her thoughts that captures minds instantly that make one halt and know about her.

………….. She defines herself as a modern woman by her actions and her re-actions.

………….. She is successful because of being in love with herself as a person.

As we moved forward with the interview, I asked her about ‘What inspires her to be a personality of such nature?’

To which she says, “My upbringing has always taught me generosity and made me capable enough to have a sensitive attitude towards my environment. I always feel and talk about a positive step towards life and what to contribute for the same in whosoever is related to me in any manner. So for instance, if I go and buy a nice pair of shoes for myself, that would make me happy and also if the same action can add a hint of smile in somebody else’s life maybe the artisans who have generously crafted that pair.”

Her concerns towards her actions and how they would in turn affect the society make her class apart.

‘What is that one thing that comes on your regular buying list?’

“For this I would say there are a couple of skin care products that I buy regularly. Being very careful with myself I go for things I am very sure would work. Most of them are organic and herbal products, since I know they will be friendly to my skin. All of these are easy on my pocket to make me invest in a good range for the best I can offer to my skin.”

‘Why and how do you define yourself as a conscious buyer?’

“I would want to start with a short example here. While in my working hours, whenever I have this urge for a nice hot tea for refreshment, I ask my office pantry guy to get me some from the street side stall. There being a reason for this, I would want to explain. The essence and authenticity they have on the flavour, no one can capture. Now in this case I make sure that I go for the one who serves in a kulhad (earthen cup) and not in a plastic cup.

I think I have made my point.”

‘Who do you think is your role-model for life?’

“My role-model for life are my own values. You would think that I am self-obsessed and yes I am because I am very confident of the values and the attitude of life that I follow and pursue.”

How inspiring that answer was!

‘What influences your buying habits?

“There are a lot of factors which influence the same. The latest trend that I constantly scroll down on my instagram is a huge influence. Then, obviously the budget I can spare for the activity also matters a lot. Another important aspect I always take care of is, from where my product is coming. How it will behave with my body or environment, if I invest in it. Other than that I always take care of possessing an exclusive collection with me.”

‘’Can you name some of your favourite brands’

“I don’t have very fancy brands in my favourites, rather the ones which are very authentic to their roots. They are: Anokhi, Bombay pasely, FabIndia and in the product sector I would say Goodearth, since they define Indian aesthetics in a very beautiful manner.”

‘What is your take on the brand Peeli Dori?’

“It is already on the way to have a place in my favourites list. Peeli Dori has a fantastic take on modern aesthetics with easy reach-ability through their online presence. Their products convey how rich our roots are and how beautiful a common craft can be. The products add on to the customer’s happiness.”

 

 

 

 

 

Chiseling Their Livelihood- Wood Carving | Raw Revivals

Residing in all parts of the nation, wood carving is a craft which is like a plant with flowers of various kinds. Each state has its own version of it and yet maintains its individual identity. This  intricate art is acquired in the skills of people practising it with one common aspect which is determination and hard work.

The art of making patterns and motifs is since the Mughal period. Intricate chests and furniture wooden pieces were made for the royals. Since then, it serves luxury both in India and overseas. This renowned technique has made its own niche in the industry and is conclusive of major part of the furniture industry. While sheesham is the most widely used type of wood, mango, teak, rosewood, ebony, sandalwood, walnut and deodar are also used. Intricately carved wooden pillars and doorways can be found in temples and palaces across the country. With royal patronage being replaced by market dynamics, wood carving is now mostly found in functional articles like furniture, bowls, boxes, lamp stands, etc.

Completely hand done, this technique requires a lot of patience to chisel out the motif from the wooden block and make the aesthetics coincide with luxury. Designs are first made on paper, and transferred onto the wood using ink. These are then carved using a variety of chisels. The article is finished by buffing in order to bring out the shine of the wood. This is usually done with the help of a lathe mechanism.

Its roots reaching out to various parts of the country which include:

Rajasthan: Bassi – carved figures, wooden shrines; Pipar, Bhari Sajanpur – bowls

Jammu & Kashmir: carved walnut wood utility and decorative items – bowls, trays, jewellery boxes, screens, tables, cupboards

Uttar Pradesh: Sahranpur – screens, folding tables, trays, bowls, boxes; Pilkhuwa, Farukkabad – printing blocks

Intricate jaalis and motifs, derived from the influences of the ancient architecture, is one major context of export from the country. Many international brands have their wood carving units in India. It is one craft which is contributing to the Indian economy and creating an impact.

Peeli Dori attempts to give this flourishing craft a contemporary face to get it in tune with today’s lifestyle.

 

Credits: Niharika Choudhary

Consumer Who Defines Sustainability.

‘Aaaj kisiki pant nai jaegi neeche!’, exclaimed one of the vendors across the road. My ears halted and my eyes instantly moved to support, what he was referring to. The ’not so old’ dark looking lean guy, was busy selling belts by shouting on the top of his voice. A good number of people surrounded him. One of his colleagues was opening and showcasing designs to his customers. As I went near, renowned brands were visible to me, available on his setup for the product variants of leather belts.

Imagine! A guy selling extremely fine knock-offs of belts in just 150 rupees for a pair. Who can dare to beat this increasing hype of fake products reaching people? Industrialized mass-produced copies of original products are misleading a large segment of market and some ‘not-so- sensitive’ customers. The demand and supply chain is dominated by this sector so much that no other lead can make its space through. People are losing the value of their products and in turn nothing connects them to it in order to retain it for a longer time.

The context here is to talk about how sustainability is directly related to the value added to a product. The value can be both monetary and intangible. When something as simple as a belt is bought with some sort of value, in terms of a brand value or maybe as an exclusive piece, one tends to retain it for a very long time. Sustainability in terms of the durability increases when things are bought with some sort of emotional connect to it. Does not really matter how often you use the product but it is always there with you. The products serve you for a longer time. When things which are just bought without any consideration, one like the knock-off belts, one does not really care for how long the product is a part of his life. It is mere a product to facilitate an action or serve a purpose. Directly affecting the consumption rate, the industrialized products are those viruses, which tempt you to first reach the core and the eats you from within. Besides high consumption rate these also affect the traditional ways of crafting valuable products.

The only difference visible in the rate of consumption in rural and urban areas has this reason following. The affluent lifestyles in urban areas make the low valued products loose connect with the mind of its customer.

Artisans are running out of business. What other choice do they have! Either they have to sell their two days of hard work in less than 150 rupees or remain workless. Many are skipping the art of handcrafting and joining the industries because of this reason.

As a customer myself, I consider it my responsibility to be sensitised enough toward my buying activities, which are affecting my environment. Being an urban consumer, one’s poverty is increasing to become affluent in monetary lifestyle but very poor in values towards their own environment. They know how to define sustainability but lack enough courage and consciousness to apply the same.

Asthishilp – Bone Craft | Raw Revivals

THE CRAFT- BONE INLAY

An ancient art form, bone carving continues to influence artists’ creations ranging from necklaces and earrings to larger projects such as knife handles, chess sets and jewellery boxes. Several cultures throughout the world have passed down the arduous process of bone carving from generation to generation. Each bone carving is a hand-made piece of art, created by experienced artists with an incredible amount of patience. Before the 1st. Century A.D., the surviving ivories show that it was mainly used for making kohl sticks, hairpins, combs, chess gamesmen, and similar mostly utilitarian objects. But, despite the meagre archaeological evidence, ancient Indian literature , both in Sanskrit and Prakrit, reveal the esteem in which the art of ivory carving was held in ancient India. The epics, Ramayana and the Mahabharata, speak of ivory and ivory merchants and ivory sword handles from Assam and ivory inlay work from Eastern India.

After the ban on the sale of ivory, bone inlay work and carved handles and jewellery has received an impetus as a cheaper alternative to scarce ivory. But now, with restrictions on ivory carving artisans have adapted to newer, easily procurable raw materials like camel bone and wood. As the camel is big animal and has large bones it becomes a valid substitute. Today , ivory is sold in black market at usurious prices and has to be crafted in secret and sold under the table, which means unscrupulous middle men, and once again the ivory craftsmen gets paid very little or not at all. This has led to a decline in the number of expert ivory carvers, who don’t have any interest in passing on the craft to their heirs and instead send them to more lucrative jobs.

 

THE CRAFTSMEN

The master craftsman and owner of the unit of bone craft is Ibrahim Khan Mehar. He started the unit in the year 1987 with an investment cost of Rs. 4800 in equal partnership with his three brothers. The next year one of the brother parted ways taking his share. In 1995, the other brother also parted ways leaving Ibrahim Khan as the sale owner of this unit. Now Ibrahim khan has 20 artisans working under him. The orders of products comes directly from companies and also from RIICO. All craftsmen are required to have all the basic skills from bone carving, inlay work, colouring, finishing etc. Surface decoration like kalam painting, mother of pearl, metal trimming etc are done from different workshops.

 

THE PROCESS

They source their raw material (bone) from Moradabad.  Camel bone is first cleaned with to remove impurities attached to the bone. To dye the pieces of bone with some specific color, the bone in boiled in a mixture of color and water for 2 – 3 days. Wood is selected keeping in mind the requirements of the product. The wood is shaped into the desired form using different carpentry machines and tools such as lathe, saw, etc. Mango and sheesham woods are used for bone inlaying. The design is carved out on wood of a particular thickness where the shaped bone pieces are fitted in. If any gaps are left after inlaying the bone, they are filled with a mixture of wax and special frame chalk which looks like bone after drying. Overlay We can overlay bone on wood and brass. The shaped bone pieces are stuck with aerolite, which is very strong glue, on the required piece of wood. The gaps can then be filled with a colored resin which a mixture of aerolite, color and resin. The outcome is then made smooth by sanding. The products are finally buffed with a soft cloth on a buffing machine which gives the final shine to the product. The final product can be decorated using different types of surface art like kalam painting or metal embellishments.

 

Peeli Dori is striving hard to give these crafts and craftsmen the recognition they deserve.

Jodhpuri Jooti- The leather craft

It was when we reached the Jodhpur Railway station, in the morning, everyone was ready for the experience ahead. Even after the long overnight train journey, there was no glimpse of fatigue on our faces. Breakfast in Jodhpur was on our minda a soo as we got down on the land on Rajasthan, yet again.

The city is known as the ,’sun city’ for the bright and sunny weather it enjoys round the year. It is also referred to as the ,’blue city’, due to blue houses around the Maharanghar fort (The fort in Jodhpur). It is set in the stark landscape of the Thar desert, previously known as Marwar.

Jodhpur being a colour rich city, has craft culture as one of key source of Income other than tourism. Blue painted houses give a very fascinated feeling along with historical monuments and motifs, seeking attention. The handicraft industry has in recent years eclipsed all the other industries in the city. Other items manufactured includes textiles, metal utensils, bone inlay and leather bags and mojries.

Peeli Dori Here attempts to naraate its experience and the tale of Jodhpuri leather craft. Approximately 1300 families are directly or indirectly dependent on leather craft for their livelihood. More than 5 lakh pairs of Jodhpuri jooties are manufactured every year. The bigger enterprises dealing with this craft are engaged in export of the same and hardly any fine product reaches the urban market of India. Maximum it reaches is the local market which is supplied by independent artisans with limited resources. They lack enough exposure to realise the value of their product and hence the exporting giants are minting money with their hard work. What they receive in turn is merely enough for them to sustain their living.

It is said that camel leather is used for bags and mojries here, but our research opened up that due to quality reasons, artisans have switched to cow and goat leather. They have the perfect tanned looking products. Natural oils are used for the unprocessed animal leather and are used in their raw form. Various techniques like, kashida embriodery, stamping, embossing are used to create intricate patterns and designs on leather. The process is completely done and by hands which give i an edge to the other leather products in the market. It’s a complete natural sustainable process using ethically sourced leather.

THE CRAFTSMAN

Suraj ji and his family has been into this craft for years now. He considers himself to have a god gift of craft and miniature products. Working since he was 12 in age, his enthusiasm of exploring in his own field of handcrafting has not been affected by the growing age and increasing responsibility of his family. As all the other craftsman, he also wants his next generation to pursue corporate jobs as carrier and not the craft. He does not wish to have the same lifestyle for then since he realise that this work does not fetch him enough as compared to the hard work and the amount of time he puts into his profession. The industrialization is taking their business away which once used to the priority for the royals.

THE PROCESS

The process of developing a product in this craft cluster starts with sourcing of leather from local vendors in Jodhpur to cleaning to leather with a tool called Rapi, which smoothes the surface and removes skin hair and uneven texture. Before this the leather is left to be soaked in water for a night to lower the salt content of leather which accumulates on its surface during the processing stage.

when the leather is ready all dried in sunlight, it becomes ad crisp and shinny. The patter required is cut out of it. Intricate kashida embroidery with silk thread is done the leather by females of the house. Other processes to give design detail to the product includes, hand embossing, hand stamping using metal dyes.

Stitched together now the product is ready to be used. To give darker shade to the product oil is used as a enhancer and for natural aroma.

Peeli Dori attempts to make these small independent artisans to stand for their work and compete with industries along with earning revenue that they deserve.

Chhapaai | Raw Revivals

Hand block printing in India is at its excellence and proves out to be the best exporters in the world. The practice dates back to the ancient times and was cherish by both the royal and the local people.  The craft is practised in various parts of the country, varying in some form or another.

A simple technique of printing on fabric using wood carved or metal blocks was traditionally done on just cotton fabric. Now with modern requirements it has shifted to other fabrics like silk and tussar. It require precise skill practise to place every motif in the required area. The artisans of the craft are experts in analysing how much colour content they need on the block for it to be printed with fine quality.

This is one more craft which is very sustainable for the urban environment. The process does not require any toxic materials. The colours used are vegetable dyes which make the fabric more exclusive and skin friendly. Very intricate patterns can be printed using this method and there is no colour limitation as such. This technique has proved itself to be one of the most efficient one other than screen printing.

Some very prominent hand block printing varitions from the different corners of the country are discussed below.

Hand block printing of Gujarat- Ajrakh

The Ajrak resist-printing technique is found in Anjar and Dhamadka in Kutch. The painted Ajrak cloth has colours – blue, red, black and white, in several patterns. The printed red and block odhnis of Anjar carry motifs similar to those found on old pottery and stone carvings

Bagru Hand block printing- Dabu

The block print in Bagru is done mainly in beige, red and black. Shades of blue with much use of indigo blue dyeing processes is a characteristic of this centre. Bagru is also famous for its mud resist process Dabu and direct printing. The motifs are simple and include floral and linear patterns

Sanganeri prints- Hand block printing in Sanganer, Rajasthan

Sanganer, near Jaipur, is famous for its fine hand block printing in subdued colors. Hand block printing was patronised by the royal family. Sceen printing is also largely done here. Saganer has become a export hub for hand block print export. The Sanganeri Print is visible from small flower motifs like stylised sunflowers, narcissuses, roses, and other flowers of luxuriant foliage like daturas, rudrakshas, and arkas

Aloka printing- Javad, Madhya Pradesh

Javad prints in Indigo and Alizarine are mostly used. In the wax resist process done here the wax is applied using he block which is carved upto 10 cm in depth which can carry enough wax solution for no of imprints. Amba Butti aor the mango motif is fmous here. A very fine print known as Akola print where metal blocks designed with nails are used. is also prtaised in the area near javad. Akola is also famous for its discharge printing as well.

Double side printing- Balotra, Rajasthan

The traditional block-printing running in parallel lines technique of Ajrakh has attained a peak of excellence at Balotra. Although a desert climate but good water is one of the main reasons which imparts good colors which is so important for hand-block printing. The speciality of the block printing of Balotra is that it is done on both sides of the cloth. This is very diffult technique because there should not be any imbalance in the design-transfer from the block to the cloth. The reverse side hand block printing is done simultenously even when the other side of the design print is wet. The hand-block printed fabric from Balotra is therefore very exclusive and relatively expensive.

 Hand block printing Nagur

The main tribal group here and at Kishangarh are the Banjaras. Costumes are printed here along with jajams and spreads. The spreads are usually in red and yellow, with the design motifs being scorpions, centipedes or chaupars. Red and yellow are also used for jajams. The prints on these include the chowki, singhara or mirchi (chilli) designs with motifs of creepers, kanwal or ladders along the borders.

Reja cloth is used for making floor spreads or padharnas. The motifs used are those of the elephant, cheeta, chaupar and soldiers, among others. Mill-made long cloth or pharad is also used along with fine cloth like cambric. Printing is also done on muslins and silks. Good printing is not obtained on fine cloth and is also visible on the reverse side. However intricate designs can be printed only on fine cloth, and not on coarse fabric. In traditional printing, animal motifs are not printed on cloth meant for costumes. Chemical colours and new printing methods and techniques are found in the hand-printing craft in modern times.

 

The variations in the same technique, evolves out to be more interesting as we get in the depth of the process. The printing sector is huge and a lot of brands are using it as their major source of fabric. It is very well appreciated by the consumers who are aware of Indian culture and also the difference hand done exclusivity.

Peeli Dori’s attempt to help the craft flourish as one of the most beautiful flowers in the garden of Indian crafts is on its way.