The Rana Plaza factory tragedy in Bangladesh saw a new wave of consumer conscience creeping into a murky capitalist industry. The ‘ethical’ pillar was soon attached to the sustainability model, snowballing into the #WhoMadeMyClothes campaign. Ticking all the boxes and putting a dying craft on the global map is a brand birthed in Nagaland - of India’s untainted seven sisters. With its roots in Dimapur, a city bounded by a gentle river and lush meadows, Heirloom Naga harmoniously ties heritage into modern aesthetic. Championing #VocalForLocal, here’s how Heirloom Naga is teaching us a thing or two about why we’re preaching a shift in perception as millennial shoppers.
Think Global, Use Local
Adopting natural fibres like cotton and eri silk, amidst a mass migration to cheap and artificial, is Heirloom Naga’s way of encouraging locally sourced, environment-friendly raw material. Significantly diminishing its carbon footprint this way, it inspires conversations on a world stage through traditional craft.
Uplift A Community
Employing over 450 weavers across Naga tribes, the livelihood of an entire community is secured through newfound commercial interest. Monetising craftsmanship and bridging the gap between artisans and the market is an important cause to further with today’s access. With no prospects of work, entire tribes would be uprooted and a historical technique, lost to the ages.
Appreciate Native Craft
#MadeInNagaland textiles have gained traction through Heirloom Naga’s efforts, reviving, and creating value for an indigenous craft. India prides itself as a diverse nation and it’s this factor that sets it apart in the fashion world. Shedding light on age-old practices rooted in culture, Heirloom Naga revisits sacred regard for its place of origin. Nagaland’s easily identifiable geometric weaves get a quirky colorway update with braided tassels to accentuate soft furnishings sprucing up homes, world-over.
Advocate A Unique Skillset
Heirloom Naga believes in ‘honoring hands’, promoting skills passed down through generations. It protects the autonomy of workers, providing them with dignified work. With complete ownership of their apparatus, a growing number of artisans enjoy work at their own pace in their own homes.
There’s an ethereal beauty in handicraft that cannot be achieved with machinery. With no technology involved, a single complex design on a loin loom can take up to four days to complete! Nimble fingers work purposefully to keep an art form alive, a tangible representation of the tribes’ ancestry. The slow fashion movement increases the worth of a product, simultaneously rejecting wasteful consumption of resources.
A culture that still considers weaving a taboo for men, Heirloom Naga initially trains its female workers. Helping them establish an unexploited place in society and procure a steady income, it ultimately sets a powerful example for women- to rise in support of each other, everywhere.
Shop the entire collection of Heirloom Naga here.