from a humble quilting stitch to exquisite decorative stitch of rural Bengal
The rural women of Bengal have, for centuries, recycled old saris and dhotis and tacked them together with a simple running stitch. The wads of used cotton fabric thus transformed into warm quilts and baby wraps were personalized with unique embroidery and became family heirlooms.
Our founder, Shamlu Dudeja along with her daughter Malika Dudeja Varma got introduced to Kantha in 1986, and realized the potential of the Kantha artisans and took upon to further the cause of reviving and revising Kantha.
Malika's Kantha Collection & Trading Pvt. Ltd. (MKC), the marketing organization was established to promote Kantha globally. Soon thereafter, Self Help Enterprise (SHE) an NGO was formed to work towards welfare of Kantha artisans.
MKC endeavors have successfully been able to unshackle Kantha from the traditional confines of a quilting stitch and allowed it soar to the top range of haute couture, haute decor and stitch portraiture.
MKC is currently giving 'dwar pe rozi' (income generating opportunity at the doorstep) to nearly 1000 artisans. The artisans sit in their homes, tending to their flock and family, and have flexitime to work on their Kantha textiles.
Kantha revival has been the harbinger of the resurgence of 'shakti', the empowerment of women. The enhancement of their status in the family and within their community has reawakened their inner sense of self worth.