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Explore our crafts

Explore our crafts. Read up on how and where our products are produced and most importantly who made them.

explore our crafts

The working relationship with our suppliers is crucial to us. An important goal of our business is to provide employment opportunities to small minority groups in a way that will help benefit and enrich their communities. We believe that helping others grow can go hand in hand with building our own business. We strive to create in a friendly and fair manner spiked with lots of laughs and masala chai.

 

women artisans
Our banana fiber product range is produced by a small cooperative of women in rural South India. The focus of the cooperative is improving the living conditions for women and rope makers in the village, as well as education for them and their children. The women artisans produce banana fiber handicraft and with the sales of their products they sustain the cooperative entirely.

Banana fiber production is a very labor intensive, yet sustainable process. Firstly the small pieces of dried banana fiber are twisted and rolled by hand to make a ball of thin rope. This is then given to the women artisans to form their handicrafts. Our carryall bag uses 100 meters of hand rolled rope and takes 3 days to complete.

 

Temiar artisans
The Temiar artisans belong to the Orang Asli indigenous minorities of Peninsular Malaysia. They constitute less than 1% of the Malaysian population. Many Temiar live near remote forested areas and despite increased development of their traditional lands they managed to retain much of their culture and heritage, including their distinct language, songs, dances and handicrafts.

The Temiar women weave with rattan and palm fronds from the Pandanus plants to create fish traps, musical instruments and baskets. Small versions of our chenos bangles were originally reinforcement rings for blowpipes used for hunting. The artisans create color patterns by using different types of rattan. Our collaboration with the Temiar will help sustain their livelihood.

re-purposed fabric
India is one of the production front runners in the textile industry. Some of the biggest international fashion houses manufacture their garments in India. A byproduct of this mass production is the enormous amount of fabric waste. Rejects or surplus fabric end up in local neighborhoods where fabric sellers try to make a living reselling it.

Wherever possible we create our designs using carefully selected premium quality re-purposed fabrics and trimmings in an attempt to reduce waste. At Common Texture we like to turn something negative into a positive.

Illustration by Rooosterboy

Illustration by Rooosterboy

block printing
Block printing is an art in itself, dating back to the 12th century in India. To create a finished piece of hand printed fabric it requires a wood carver for the pattern, a colorist for the dye and a stamper to apply.
Like most crafts in India artisan skills are traditionally passed down from father to son. The block printing industry nowadays faces many challenges as new generations look for less labor-intensive jobs, it is getting harder to find skilled artisans in modern India. Our block printed textiles are all being created by hand at a small fair trade studio in South India.

The beautiful look of hand block printing cannot be replicated by a machine. By choosing this ancient craft we aim to invigorate new generations of hand block printers.