The journey of human’s nakedness to their impeccable fashion is an interesting story. Since civilization started to form, there has been a debate about whether they wore clothes or flaunted their birthday suits. Today the world boasts of not only traditional but also quirky fashion which caters to all kinds of people. Men are celebrated with styles that are not just limited to three piece suits and trousers. Women have countless options. In these times, with the rise in population and demand for clothes, the need for sustainable fashion has become a necessity.
What is meant by sustainable fashion?
The concept of ethical fashion is not a wannabe trend. Sustainable or Green fashion addresses the need for eco-friendly fabrics that will take care of the utilization of resources that goes into making the attire without sacrificing on the quality and style. One such material comes from West Bengal/Bangladesh - the Taant Jamdani. On the eastern side of the undivided India, the area is subjected to extreme humid and hot summers. Being a hub for saree, the artisans of Bengal (pre-partition) decided to create a trendsetter, and they merged the intricate designing of jamdani into the translucent lightweight taant creating an ultimate comfortable wear. Designers all over the world are turning to this amalgamation of pure cotton and weaving them into stylish and sustainable attires. Organic and sustainable, the taant jamdani is not only airy and lightweight but absorbs perspiration, making it the most sought after fabric design.
The history of Taant Jamdani
Taant or cotton handlooms are a huge part of West Bengal culture. This cottage industry saw both love and hatred in immense measures. While the Mughals loved and supported the taant industry, the Brits wanted to destroy it to facilitate Manchester’s textile industry. But love conquered hatred, and the taant industry continued to bloom.
The jamdani pattern was first tried on muslin (silk) and the design and technique soon gained popularity. Did you know that a muslin jamdani saree was supposed to fit into a matchbox or slip through a finger ring to show its finesse? Nowadays, designers are playing around the pattern by trying it on various fabric mixtures. Yet, the traditional sarees continue to be handwoven in pure cotton or silk. The jamdani designs are intricate motifs that are woven into the cloth while it is being woven.
Unlike taant, jamdani did see a decline, but years later, it had a revival in the form of taant jamdani. The typical design of the jamdani on the taant fabric makes it stand apart. An ideal taant saree will have a broad and heavily designed pallu (aanchal) while the jamdani is based on a lighter, more transparent fabric, which highlights the motifs and designs once worn, draping all 6 yards around the body. These sarees are breathable and absorbent, making them a top priority in every woman’s closet. The taant jamdani is favored by Indian women to be classy and fashionable without foregoing comfort during the sultry summer days. But, the men are not neglected! Jamdani kurtas are ideal for office or adda wear. These taant jamdanis are quintessential bengali sarees that can be worn as everyday fashion or displayed, in person, during festivals like Holi or Saraswati Puja and the summer galas.
Future of Taant Jamdani
The love for taant jamdani is evergreen. Eco-friendly fashion and taant jamdanis are synonymous. Being a handwoven process, it takes time and dedication, but the reliability of the material and its sustainability is unparalleled. Weavers or tantis are proud of their skills as they pass it down from one generation to another. In fact, they are a community that aid each other to bring life into their creations. Designers are utilizing these fabrics to not only create ethnic wears but to spread across various designs. After the UNESCO tag of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2013, the design gained attention from international buyers as well.
Celebrities, especially Bengal’s known faces, flaunt their heritage whenever possible. And, the taant jamdani even crossed oceans and invaded Hollywood. This made the alternative styling and experimenting with a combination of fabrics to highlight the jamdani work one of the main driving forces. Designers are working closely with the weaving community to provide them with the resources required to produce their finest craft. The tantis, in return, deliver each time something unique and mesmerizing. The unique blend often causes the items of clothing to be the show-stopper.
Owning a traditional saree or dhoti kurta is a dream of every Indian. When sarees get passed down from one generation to another, they carry with themselves a story. Every thread narrates the story of the weaver. Every fold expresses the story of the wearer. VANYYA recognises this narration, and they ensure that each purchase of their Eco-friendly sarees will carry forth a new story. Taant jamdanis, when properly maintained, can last for generations. Online shopping fans can rely on VANYYA’s promise of quality with ease. VANYYA brings to you vibrant jamdani tant sarees to add to your wardrobe. Check out their collection of Ethical dresses here.