Aesha meaning Wish
Colour: Blue & white Kalamkari floral pattern
Size: One Size
Material: 100% Cotton. Light weight for warmer climates!
Care: Dry Clean or Hand Wash below 30ºC. Do not tumble dry.
Shirt Story has launched new hand-made light weight classic shirt for Spring/Summer!
The planet is definitely getting warmer so for our customers who love our classic Ikat shirts we bring you our response to changing summer weather. Shirt Story’s handwoven Ikat cotton shirts, first available in the V&A Museum and Joss Graham’s shop in London eight years ago, are now available to customers all over the world through www.shirtstory.co. Judging by sales over the years these classic hand woven cotton Ikat shirts continue to feel comfortable all year round, unless the heat is extreme.
So we have chosen a very special cloth for our customers to be happy in increasingly hottter summers and holidays in the sun. The cloth in india is called Kalamkari. It’s very finely woven, very soft and incredibly comfortable in warm weather. Produced in relatively small quantities, it is naturally dyed and block printed by hand in Persian inspired patterns. There are 23 steps in the making process. The cloth floats around the body creating little currents of air reflecting a subtle interplay of blues, creams and black. The cut and shape of this new Shirt Story Kalamkari shirt is exactly the same as our classic Ikat shirt.
The Kalamkari cloth in your shirt today is the result of a revival in the 1950s of the ancient craft in India. Textile designer Nelly Sethna was researching historical Kalamkaris in the V&A collection at that time. She injected vivacity into traditional designs, respecting their Persian origins and proven block making and hand printing methods. Government supported training schools brought new talent and skills to the villages in Andhra Pradesh in the late 50s and 60s. Since then skilled crafts men and women have been producing small quantities of Kalamkari cloth for discerning clients in india. But in another generation or two however this complex exacting craft may no longer be practiced.
Transmission of the production of hand-made Kalamkari from one generation to another is affected by both education and climate change in India today. Younger generations, who’s fathers and uncles learned their craft from their grandparents, are increasingly attracted in school by computer technologies or other higher paid jobs in construction. Currently fifteen master craftsmen currently oversee about two hundred workers in small villages in the region of Machilipatnam. Access to running water is also a vital ongoing problem for Kalamkari printers in Andhra Pradesh. Seasonal flooding, cyclones and tsunamis are a constant threat to the livelihoods of these crafts people. One of the missions of Shirt Story is to support both the Ikat weavers and dyers and the Kalamkari dyers and block printers in India who are working in these increasingly challenging conditions.
We hope you will care for your very special shirt with love. Please do wash it by hand and do not put it in the washing machine or dryer. If you hang it out to dry in the breeze it may not even need a cool iron. We hope you will enjoy it and please watch out for new designs and colours to appear on our website and Instagram posts over the coming months!