Kochi is hosting an exhibition of a series of hand-picked designer cotton garments. Noted designer couture brand Rouka has joined hands with a non-governmental organization, Care for Chendamangalam (C4C), to revive the flood-ravaged weaver community in central Kerala. An exclusive collection of Rouka's designer sarees and garments, hand-woven in Chendamangalam weavers village, are displayed at Kerala Museum, Edappally.
The expo started Saturday evening. It will be open for visitors till 7 pm on Sunday.
Chendamangalam handloom weavers hub, known widely for its versatile hand-woven cotton textiles, was ruined in 2018 August deluge. With an intention of reviving the community and their vocation, a group of like-minded people from Chennai constituted the collective called C4C.The collective identified a weaving society in Chendamangalam which has over 42 women weavers and focused their promotional activities on them.
“There are over seven weaving societies there. We selected one with most number of women weavers in order to convey a message of women empowerment along with fashion and social responsibility. But as we continued to work with them, we came to know some shocking facts,” C4C volunteers said in a press note.
There are no weavers below the age of 45 in the community. The volunteers of C4C identified two focus areas, 1) to revive the society that has been adopted and 2) to nurture the next generation weavers. They have also prepared a three-year-strategy at the end of which the products manufactured by Chendamangalam weavers will reach a global market.
As part of their expansion plans, C4C tagged along Sreejith Jeevan, the young and talented couture designer, who owns Rouka.
Rouka showcases the finesse of cotton and organic textiles. An alumnus of National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad and Encole Nationale Superieure Des Arts Decoratifs, Paris, Sreejith has launched a brand new series of designer cotton wear, all woven in the traditional looms of Chendamangalam.