The project sought to design and develop a range of handloom silk saris at the Bhagalpur cluster for the festive season of 2020. The humbling experience of staying at the cluster village and spending the majority of the project time with the weavers not only helped in getting a deeper understanding of their craft and skill set, but also helped in empathising with their daily problems. This project evolved into a journey of new learning and improvising, both for the weaver and the designer. The end product was a comprehensive range of handwoven Bhagalpur silk saris inspired by the ‘Cityscapes’ theme. Given the nature of the theme and the limitations of the cluster, a lot of research and development was done while interacting with the weavers during the sampling stage. Experimenting with yarn dyeing, mixing, and combining it with different weaving techniques led to a unique range development. The final saris are a reflection of the delicate balance between achieving a different and new look while maintaining the aesthetics of the cluster.
Keywords: Bhagalpur silk cluster, handloom, handwoven silk saris, heritage,