Handmade in India

Gujarati woman ready to cook Michele

By Deborah Miller

India! Within that one word live a hundred thousand stories, the scent of a million spice markets, and an indefinable mystery that has lured travelers for thousands of years and given birth to countless stories.

Free Presentation and Textile Display from India
Handmade in India
Thu, Feb 18, 5-7pm
Casa Rosada Hotel
Cuna de Allende 12
www.journeysofalifetime.net

Imagine that you have wandered off the tourist trail into a small tribal village in India, where the women are known for their exquisite work with textiles. You are seated in the central courtyard, surrounded by beautifully painted huts; the gentle cows are meandering around as women of all ages, dressed in their elaborate tribal clothing, are sitting on the ground carefully weaving, embroidering, painting, dyeing, or block printing fabulous works of art before your very eyes. They are focused, but the atmosphere is relaxed and congenial as they chat, giggle, and create. Each finished piece is unique, a lovely textile of handcrafted and timeless beauty.

As an honored guest, you are invited into a home for chai; you notice the home is small but spotless. The water vessels, pots, plates, and cups are lovingly and neatly stacked on open shelves, displayed proudly. The painted walls are inset with little round mirrors causing the light to shine like many little diamonds dazzling all around. As you sip perfectly spiced tea you are humbled by the humility of these villagers.

India, thankfully, is a country where they still make things, both useful and decorative, by hand, using simple tools, often in the same manner that they did hundreds of years ago.

When you are able to purchase items directly from the artisans, not only do you have a beautiful handmade piece, but you have the memory of the village, the person, the history. You have your own story to tell about each piece you have brought home.

My passion is India. I have been traveling and living there for 25 years. During that time, I had the opportunity to meet with many of the master artisans of all types of handicrafts. I have been invited into their homes, watched as they patiently created a unique piece of art, “assisted” them in their workshops, sipped chai as I got to know their families and, most importantly, made friends.

There is so much to see and do, but in my opinion, visiting villages is the way to “experience” India, not merely “see” it. Many companies offer a standard “tour” to India, but if you are interested in a “journey,” knowing and experiencing more of what India offers, please join Helga, Michele, and me for a presentation and stories of India, its villages, and handicrafts. There will be quality handpicked textiles on display that were purchased on a recent journey to India.

 

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