By MWB Desk
Friendship Colours of the Chars takes the most authentic Jamdani weaves from the remotest regions of Bangladesh to its upscale ateliers in Dhaka and in Luxembourg
Friendship Colours of the Chars is the first sustainable/slow fashion brand of Bangladesh. It is a concern of the NGO Friendship, which operates in the most inaccessible chars (riverine islands) and the coastal belt of Bangladesh to empower people through sustainable approaches. One such initiative was providing up-skilling opportunities to women from the remote riverine islands, in weaving and crafts. The retail outlet is thus a celebration of what marginalized women in chars can do when simply given the opportunity.
“With the brand, come the people. And, so, it’s these marginalised communities that I want to be recognised worldwide. I want people to see that just because they are poor and uneducated, it doesn’t mean that they cannot produce something coveted by international markets.”
Runa Khan, Founder, Friendship
What makes the truest difference between other commercially produced handloom fabrics and how Colours makes their products, particularly when it comes to fabrics. Only traditional techniques of weaving (handlooms), dyeing, printing and embroidery are used. All materials used are pure cotton and silk. Most of all, the colors applied are natural or Azo-free dyes. Hence all the yarn and dyes used are biodegradable.
“Our fabrics are of which you would enjoy, as our beautiful weavers enjoy creating” says Nazra Mahjabeen Sabet, Assistant Director, Nodi Ltd, an enterprise of Friendship.
“We are one of the very few organizations patronizing the jamdani weavers in the truest sense of upholding heritage. Jamdani is a UNESCO declared Heritage with the motifs being documented. What makes our jamdanis stand out are, all our jamdani sarees are created by combining these exact documented motifs using the purest quality cotton yarn and natural dye” adds Alvin Colin Furtado, Deputy General Manager, Nodi Ltd.
The word ‘Jamdani’ in itself is a derivative of the Persian words ‘jam’ meaning flower, and ‘dani’, meaning ‘vase’. The weaving process is usually a time consuming one and the final product features motifs of flowers and different figures.