Textile Cooperative ”Desi”, India

A full feast is going on as we arrive on India’s Independence Day, a day you do celebrate with taking the day off, saluting the Indian flag and having get togethers. August 15 is the day when India got their independence from British rule and became a sovereign state in 1947. Today everyone is dressed up in extra nice clothes, the flag is raised in the small flagpole, and the music is on.

At Desi, located near the village of Heggodu in Karnataka, they color cotton, weave and dye it, making beatiful textiles that are sewn into dresses, shirts, bags, towels and many other useful things. Around two hundred women and twenty men work here with an average salary of around 5-6 dollars a day. The cooperative is placed on a hillside, surrounded by the green jungle, and have several smaller houses together for the different stages of producing textiles; one house for sewing, one for dying the yarn, one for making patterns and drying, one for administration. You feel the Gandhi spirit as we are shown around, and even though we don’t see the spinning wheels you could feel their presence. Wings of history combined with modern times.

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