Ahmedabad, India was once famous for its textile mills, but when global competition became too great, many of the mills were forced to shut down, leaving countless women either unemployed or with unstable seasonal employment.
St. Mary’s Mahila Shikshan Kendra is an artisan group founded by women, for women. Giving artisans the option to work either in a workshop or at home, mothers with young children are able to care for their families while earning a livable wage.
The work they do is in the traditional Kathiawad style, incorporating tiny reflective pieces into embroidery known as “mirror-work.” This style of embroidery has been a custom of the Gujarat region of Ahmedabad for centuries. All of the cotton is hand-loomed using only local thread in order to support neighboring workshops. To purchase one of these beautiful textiles is to show your support for these women who work hard and appreciate your interest in the labor of their hands.
Your purchase helps provide maternity care, health programs, children’s education programs, and training in the craft of embroidery for the women of St. Mary’s Mahila Shikshan Kendra. Fair trade does empower women.