1. Indigo is the outcome of a research project which investigates the fashion design potential of new fabrics made from 'old world' organic Kala cotton (Gossipium Herbaceum) grown in Kachchh, in India.

    Unlike most of the cotton grown in India today, which is hybridized with other plants or genetically modified, Kala Cotton is indigenous and genetically pure. This proposal outlines an involvement from a designer's perspective, working with rural artisans in Gujarat to develop a range of contemporary womenswear garments, in order to test the design potential of these fabrics.

    The designer has worked with an Indian master weaver to develop designs for organically dyed fabrics. Fieldwork carried out within the Rabari community has led to the introduction of embroidery into the range of garments. Indigo aims to deliver positive social and economic impact to the rural artisans of Kachcch, through the creation of sustainable products, and the promotion of Kala Cotton to the international design community. The earlier outcomes of the project, a series of experimental test pieces, were exhibited in Japan in 2014. This new body of work focuses on developing the silhouettes and zero waste cutting methods.

    As a result of the exhibition in Tokyo, some garments have gone on sale with London a high fashion concept store. This outcome illustrates the current interest in garments produced responsibly. There is a growing interest in producing garments which humanise the fashion process and celebrate all of those involved with the production chain, from farmer to weaver, designer, tailor, embroiderer, NGO, retailer, and ultimately to the consumer.


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