Gandhi’s Khadi: A new trend in Apparel Designing through Resist Printing and Traditional Embroidery as a Value Addition of Khadi Silk

Deodiya, Sangita; Ojha, Divya and Purwar, Shrishti

Gandhi ji used ‘Khadi’ as a ‘Livery of freedom’ and ‘tool for self-reliance’ during freedom movement.  Khadi, the ‘fabric of freedom’, has been a sources of empowering millions of spinners, weavers and other artisans spread across the country and making them self-reliant. Khadi is traditional, ethnic and artisan intensive. He had also foreseen Khadi as a tool for Economic Independence. Khadi has always been a fabric with attitude. It has now become a fashion statement. Its journey from its eventful birth as the fabric favoured by revolutionaries, to designer boutiques and elite consciousness is worth enough of mention in the history of the country. The need of the hour is to make Khadi a ‘National Fabric’ and a tool of mass movement for achieving the objective of socio economic development of the most vulnerable section of the society thereby fulfilling the Gandhian objective of ‘Antyodaya’. One of the way for empowering the Khadi and making it popular globally is value addition. Value Addition is the process where we enhance the saleability of the product by adding some incentives to it. One way of value addition used on khadi in the present study was different techniques of Tie and Dye. Present study was done under the scheme PRODIP (Product Development, Design Intervention and Packaging) under which Khadi apparels were developed using tie and dye method and were ornamented through different traditional embroidery techniques. These products were sold in Khadi Bazar and a fashion show were organized for the same. As a result, a huge positive response and big sale was recorded for the developed products.

Keywords: Khadi | Value addition | tie and dye | apparel


I believe that where there is pure and active love for the poor there is God also. I see God in every thread that I draw on the spinning wheel…….. Mahatma Gandhi

Khadi is defined as any cloth hand spun and hand woven. The raw materials may be cotton, silk or wool, which are spun into threads on a spinning wheel called a Charkha. Khadi is an Indian fabric, also known by another name Khaddar also said to be the essence if India. During pre-Independence era, the movement of Khadi manufacturing gained momentum under the guidance of father of nation, Mahatma Gandhi. This movement of khadi manufacturing and weaving started as symbol of defiance to discourage the Indians from wearing the foreign clothes. Khadi before Independence was considered as the fabric for the political leaders and rural people. But, now it has found its way into the wardrobe of fashion conscious people.
Khadi is geographically a wide spread economic activity encompassing all the states in the country. Given the high involvement of women and marginalized groups in the KVI sector this approach will consolidates the developmental efforts to promote inclusive growth.
“Khadi” means any cloth that is hand spun and hand woven, made of cotton, wool, silk and their blends. Hand spinning and weaving imparts it a rugged texture, a unique look, feel and hand, which can be modified by finishing treatment. It’s a ‘Gift for today from the treasury of the past’. Mahatma Gandhi elevated the brittle thread of cotton to a symbol of strength and self-sufficiency, and to provide employment for the millions during India’s freedom struggle, and that symbolism of wearing cloth made by human hands has continued till this day. In the present scenario renowned designers such as Ritu Beri, manish Malhotra are using Khadi as a fashion fabric and making them as a fashion fabric.

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