“What I do is skilled artwork. Nobody except the people from our community – The padmashali community – can work on this. Like all the members of our family, I grew up watching my parents weave.
I started weaving well before the age of 10 and practiced the art by weaving plain cloth material initially. As I mastered the technique of weaving gradually, I started to weave traditional items like bed sheets, handkerchiefs, and shawls. But what I enjoyed weaving the most were traditional sarees especially with complex ikkat motifs of stars, flowers, and zoomorphic including parrots, elephants, and peacocks.We work hard for little money.
Both my wife and I work for 10-12 hours a day to earn Rs. 12,000 per month. And now, because of the current pandemic situation, there’s no marketing at all.On an average, it takes us about four days to make one saree. Before that, two people work with the yarn, design, and colors to get it ready to be weaved. Earlier, ladies in our community would only do the preloom preparation work such as getting the yarn ready, making ASU, and graphing while men did the weaving part. Today, women sit at the loom too and weave. They work more enthusiastically than us. Our generation is perhaps the last in this field.
My son doesn’t want to be in this field even though he knows the basics of weaving. He’s passionate about making wedding films and photography, so I have purchased him a good camera kit. He’s still working his way out and I’m looking forward to the day when I could proudly walk into his photography studio and see him do everything which he has dreamt in life. I knew it will take some time considering the current pandemic situation but I am sure he’s going to achieve his goal one day.”