* Packaging.

Our online business is more than four years old and we have always been attentive towards waste and plastic.

We do not use plastic buttons, labels are always hand block printed, price tags are screen printed on recycled paper then tagged using cotton thread, and most of our bills are e-generated. It's a journey, where we are still learning and hope to get better.

One of the challenges which we had initially encountered was with the packaging material. Brown carton box was not suitable for us, as not only it required a plastic cover packing inside (or outside) but also...

* Awareness in khadi.

Recently we asked a question on our social media on "Is there a lack of awareness about khadi amongst consumers?" and the response was overwhelming with an 88% 'yes'.

It got us thinking on whose responsibility is it to create that awareness? Should the buyer be asking more questions and be aware? Is it the responsibility of the primary producers, in this case, khadi sanghas, the bhandars, KVIC, or MSME ministry? or brands like us who are taunted as middlemen?

I have taken some time to answer as I was trying to find an appropriate word, unlike Germans who have...

* Power and the powerless.

Power and the powerless.
I am often requested to explain the difference between hand-loom and power-loom and how could consumers understand and differentiate between both. Depending on where and on which platform, I usually recommend "check for the unevenness in the weave, slubs, missing threads, coarseness and pinholes on the selvedge, etc.,"

But unfortunately, all these symbolic marks can be duplicated by power-loom also. So, I eventually suggest them to buy hand-loom from a person, brand or an organisation whom they trust most and continue to explore, read...

* Beauty in blemish.

These are some of the injured sarees which we have in stock and almost 20% of the sarees which we receive are wounded hence needs care. They are not disabled sarees. Though they cannot be utilised for the purpose it was woven for, we have been using them productively, and that's not the point. 

The payment for all our saree/textile is made even before it reaches us. We keep cajoling the weavers to be more careful but as many of them are first-generation weavers and not skillfully trained,...

* Burden of consumption.

Off late, some of the questions which we get to hear are "How can we be conscious consumer and at the same time support handmade by buying more?" or "In the current economic scenario, it's not only the sellers but also the buyers who are struggling, so what to expect?" 

These are noteworthy questions, but let's recognise that the handmade industry was not thriving before the pandemic. It's just that the quandary has become more real and visible on social media. 

Still, there could be a couple of ways of deciphering these observations. The...