Since last few days, unemployment has become a major talking point for most of the Indians. It has to be, with a huge young population and fewer new jobs and vocation creation the outcome couldn't be expected to be much different. It seems we as a society would fail to sustain if this trend doesn't stop.
With the advent of new machines and technology, the overall process of producing everything has picked up the pace. The machines have replaced humans with great ease. However, this has also resulted in mass unemployment, unproductive lives, squandering of human resource and more importantly the loss of the very human touch involved in the whole process. As machines are powered by energy derived from fossil fuels, the carbon footprint has also gone up. Early days of the machine era didn't show any perils, given that every socioeconomic issue takes time to reflect in society.
Let's take the example of the fashion Industry, the size of the industry and the ever-changing trends in it has its social and environmental implications. Also, the very frequent changes in industry result in overconsumption which ultimately leads to an increase in inequality and pollution. The fabric made by fossil fuel driven power looms has completely overshadowed and swallowed the handwoven fabric. This is leading to mass unemployment in weaving communities as most of the weavers are adept at only one skill that is weaving. The unemployment has not only weakened the village economy but has also culminated into migration from village to cities, adding to the already stressed and limited urban resources.
Handloom and craft domain is the second largest employment provider after agriculture. Most of these folks work independently and play a vital role in an entire economy of a village and consequently the nation. This decentralized and independent way of working gave birth to different fashion and styles centered on the local climate and aesthetic of people. When power loom replaced all of this, it completely destroyed ‘an art' which has evolved over the period of time coupled with mass unemployment.
When most of the fabric was hand made the overall energy consumption and pollution in each stage like spinning, weaving and dyeing was negligible, however, it has completely changed after the introduction of machines. The carbon footprint and water pollution increased tremendously with the new power looms. Since the speed of production has increased with cheaper fabric and the frequent changes in fashion trends it has also led to the problem of ubiquitous solid waste.
So, in a nutshell, the whole concept of fast fashion has done severe damage to society giving birth to various socioeconomic issues in its wake and has ultimately robbed us of our art and tradition.
We at Baya, try to do our little bit, by reaching out to such weavers and craftsmen and make a platform available for them to market their art. All of us thus I feel, stand to gain from such a venture- the weavers, you as our valued customers and us as the marketers contributing our share. Your support would go a long way to help us build and bank upon our collective strengths as a conscientious community. Let us all join forces for a happier and inclusive future where all benefit and none is left out.
So next time when you are looking for apt clothes for you make sure it is more sustainable and inclusive for everyone.
Thanks ! !
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- Tags: carbon footprint, employment, fashion, handloom, handwoven, india, khadi, sustainability, textile