FAQs at Fatherland
Sometimes we come across these queries.
1. Q : What Jamdanis are these? Are these Dhakais?
A : No these are not Dhakais, as they would be so if they were woven in Bangladesh. These are silk by cotton Muslin Jamdanis handwoven in West Bengal. These are cut Jamdanis (a technique where extra weft threads are cut manually while weaving). Different from traditional Jamdanis of past, which would have a starchy stiffness. This is a softness we at Fatherland have worked on & have evolved with.
People prefer these Jamdanis, especially because of it's gossamer feel, the completely de-starched yarns, the evolved softness & the almost-fluid drape. However Jamdanis aren't our speciality yet, as we'd say these are our humble, but certainly an evolved category, on-demand. But we are yet to do something significant with Jamdanis. The way we want to do, may happen sometime in future & if there is a market for such, as it'll be a lot more costly.
2. Q : What are Fatherland's speciality items?
A : At the moment our speciality would be the Shop 1 section, which is the kernel of what we are doing & the way are moving future-wise. So it's going to be more of garments in future & may be some unconventional sari-esque formations. And a lot of other intangible things beyond saris & clothes.
Our specialty at the moment would also be our prints, which we think are more individualistic than Jamdanis.
We're not doing traditional saris, as for that there are state emporiums, weavers collectives, several other entities & designers. Even Dongrias & Kunbis have entered the mainstream market now, as so many collectives are making them, which is a great sign on the handloom front.
But we are here to work on what excites us, could be our own crafts, not necessarily indigenous. We are here to ideate & visualize our own trajectories. We are evolving & are constantly re-inventing ourselves.
3. Q : Why is your instagram page a private page, where you need to reach out to as many possible?
A : As many of our patrons have known, we have a FB page, which we are presently not using & which has more than 14 thousands followers. But out of 14 thousands, we figured there would be only around 500 people who actually relate to us, to our work & some being patrons. The rest do follow, but belong to a different interest-group, things we don't do. Hence we are not using that page at the moment. So it's not about the numbers, but relevance. Moreover presently almost fifty percent of our present clients are not even active on social media.
We don't think we'll be doing something so mainstream, that it needs to be the craze of everyone, at least at the moment. We prefer a quieter existence on social media, as we try to connect to a relevant few, who could relate.
4. Q : Why aren't you doing accessories anymore?
A : Because today we love a completely sans-accessory, clean look. Today we even photoshop the bindis out from our patrons’ photos, before sharing. Of course India is known for jewellery, genres of both traditional & contemporary jewellery, but our style would be totally devoid of any accessory.
When we did nose-clips in 2014, it was completely radical & new, an object we ideated. Hence it was majorly sought after by many fashion stylists, editors, were featured during 2014-2015 on several fashion editorials & covers. From Grazia to Harper's Bazaar Bride. And then it was followed by many, including many curated market places & are numerous today. So we stopped doing it long back.
On our archive lookbooks of our initial years, it was a very indigenous look, more indigenous than anyone would go for. Replete with gajras, gendas on neckbuns, big powder-kumkum bindis & lots of glass bangles. Our early patrons have seen that & we've done so much of that till 2016. Again today it is seen much & we are not doing it anymore.
We might do accessory in future, if we really feel like. But today an absolutely clean look is our style.