An Ethical & Sustainable Luxury
We have partnered with the Peoli women who use traditional skills to produce handmade knits. These women are based in Almora located at the southern edge of the Kumaon Hills of the Himalayan Range in Uttarakhand, North India.
We have developed this partnership because Peoli’s guiding principles are based on a conscious effort towards conservation of natural resources and leaving a light carbon footprint in the process. Harvested rain water heated with solar energy is used for natural dyeing. Hand done processes like hand stitching, hand spinning, etc. are used wherever possible to utilise the unlimited human energy and reduce our dependence upon machines and non-renewable sources of energy. Plus, earth-friendly chemicals and materials are used for the processing of textile materials.
Producing our Knits
Our hand knits have been produced using hand spun Kala cotton from Gujarat. Kala cotton is indigenous to Kachchh and is, by default, organic, as the farmers do not use any pesticides and synthetic fertilisers. It is a purely rain fed crop that has a high tolerance for both disease and pests, and requires minimal investment. Indigenous cotton is both resilient and resurgent in the face of stressful land conditions.
Every aspect of our knits is done by hand. From the hand picked cotton that is then spun by hand right through to the hand stitching. Using human energy rather than machinery means we utilise the skills and passions of people and become less dependant on non-renewable energy sources to run various tools and machinery. 'Handmade' keeps people employed and always a necessity in the making of these garments.
Primarily working on a decentralised model, Peoli engages about sixty women artisans who are looking for opportunities to support their families economically by a means that lets them work from their homes. Attending to every detail of the production from raw materials to spinning, natural dyeing, weaving and knitting, the community of Peoli artisans make their work life as part of the Uttarakhand landscape.
The Peoli Women
The women artisans of the hills employ their dexterous hands to create clothes and accessories from the fabric of our organisation. A similar synthesis is applied in crafting the products where local craft skills like handloom weaving and knitting, are ingeniously merged with hand embroidery, beadwork, shibori, etc. We, at Peoli, nurture the hands and the hearts of people to provide a fair means of livelihood. Respecting and improving skills we are sharing a journey that proposes to be sustainable.
The Making of Our Knitwear
A Story From Manuali Devi, A Peoli Women
7th of May, 2021
Manuali Devi; 43 years old, mother of 3, her husband runs a grocery store.
She tells us that her favourite part of the day is to sit out in the sun and knit with her neighbours, who also work as decentralised knitters with Peoli. She is proud of the fact that she is able to contribute to her household income all through the year. She divides her time knitting for Peoli and one another NGO at Almora.
She really enjoys cable knitting, and is the most excited to work on new projects. Even when knitting multiple pieces of the same product, she always asks for different colours.
Abhinav: When she came to our studio a couple of days ago, she was telling us about her daily struggle to fetch drinking water because of which her knitting is slower than usual.
Massive forest fires earlier this year in the Kumaon region of our state have left the forest fed rivers, streams and waterfalls absolutely dry, because of which a populated town like Almora is facing acute water shortage.
We love our partnership with the Peoli women and providing you with a sustainable and natural luxury you can treasure. We hope that you fall in love with our knitwear just like we have so we can continue to build and sustain our partnership with the Peoli women.
Cloth & Co. xx