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Published
Jul 1, 2021
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Saheli supports female artisans during Covid-19 second wave

Published
Jul 1, 2021

Non-profit atelier Saheli Women is linking up with global fashion brands including Zazi Vintage to provide work for rural women artisans and promote sustainable fashion during the pandemic. 

A look by Zazi Vintage, sewn by the women of NGO Saheli Women - Zazi Vintage- Facebook


As part of its efforts to keep rural craftswomen employed during the pandemic, Saheli Women recently worked with Amsterdam-based womenswear brand Zazi Vintage on its spring/summer 2021 collection ‘Healing Colours’.

The organisation linked up Zazi with Mumbai-based brand Akané, which resulted in a collection of loose, natural-dyed dresses with a feminine and bohemian spirit, the brand announced on Facebook. 

“With Saheli Women, we found these two incredible sisters in Mumbai who run [slow-fashion brand] Akané,” Zazi Vintage founder Jeanne de Kroon told Vogue India.

“They go to the temples most mornings to collect waste flowers and pigments after prayers, and they use these to make natural dyes. So, they dyed some of the hand-woven silks and the Saheli Women stitched them into dresses.”  
 
Saheli’s focus on working with small, sustainable fashion brands was one of the reasons it kept receiving orders during the pandemic, where many businesses saw orders screech to a halt, according to the NGO’s founder Madhu Vaishnav, Vogue India reported.

“You don't need fancy offices, you don't need a fancy platform- ladies can sit in their homes, do the embroidery and create the fabric,” she said. 
 
For the future, Saheli Women aims to continue to build its network of rural women artisans creating sustainable garments to enable them to increase their standard of living. 

“If my community can survive the pandemic, if they can get the health services for their family- for me, that’s sustainable,” said Vaishnav.

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