* Dichotomy.

It was late evening when he received the call. Usually, he doesn't attend unknown numbers after 6.30 pm, but this time he did.

The lady on the other side introduced herself and said she got his number from her friend in the village. Hurriedly, she asked if she could get some work that she could do from home, like quilting or tailoring.

With his further enquiry, she revealed that she and her husband had grown onions this year. It was as big as a light bulb, but unfortunately, untimely heavy rain destroyed their crop, hence the need for work.


* A theory of 4 handkerchiefs.

A recent TOI article said the most searched product in Jan 2023 so far is - Hankies. Further, they listed a few amaz(on)ing handkerchiefs to buy from Hexafun, Peter England, Allen Solly, Van Heusen & a few more, priced anywhere between 250rs to 400rs for a pack of 3.

Of course, Khadi handkerchief didn't make it to their prestigious list. So, despite not being allowed to use the trademarked word "Khadi", my self-inflicted moral duty suggests I talk about it.

My research says we have 10 lakh software employees in Bengaluru alone. Though I can validate the numbers I share...

* Effort, not wasted.

At Metaphor Racha, we have been using hand block printing as a craft for many years now. Not only do we have our exclusive wooden blocks, but we also use those blocks that are old, chipped, discarded, and orphaned, respecting the 'unknown block maker'.

Before laying the textile/saree on the table for printing, a thick cotton cloth, locally called "Achada", is laid on the table. This 'Achada' acts as a safety layer, absorbing the excess colour from the printing so that the colour paste/liquid doesn't seep into the wooden table.

Depending on the amount of work, every 3 to 4...

* The making of Kubsa

How to design a KUBSA (Kubsa/ಕುಬ್ಸ means saree blouse in north Karnataka Kannada dialect)

Travel to a middle-of-nowhere North Karnataka village. Don't worry if you look out of place. You are there to work with Koudi artisans, but that shouldn't stop you from wandering in the bylanes of the village. Avoid eye contact with stray dogs & act brave.

Start working, & by noon, you will come across fascinating facets of rural life & work. Plonk yourself next to the oldest person in the group, as they are the best storytellers. Don't be shy in complimenting the amazing-looking...

* Cotton V/s Polyester national flag.

You have two options.

Option 1:
A farmer grows Jayadhaara cotton variety with other vegetables & pulses, which takes care of clothing & nutrition for all of us. The cotton is harvested by employing local women and sold as per MSP.

After ginning, the medium staple length cotton, ideal for manual spinning, get sent to a slivering plant, & the roving cotton thus produced is handed over to the Khadi sangha.

The yarn spun by rural women on ambara charaka gets washed, starched, warped, wound, & hand-woven by various craftspeople in the village. The Khadi textile produced with minimum energy &...