Ohfab, a niche handloom brand was founded in 2016 with the aim of reviving traditional techniques and designs woven by skilled artisans across India.
Founded by two sisters Anchal Sagar and Akshita Sagar, the brand is already connected to more than 100 weavers, which include 10 master craftsmen from Banaras, Gujarat, Kota and Maharashtra,
While growing up in Ambala, the sisters witnessed their love for textiles and fabrics.
After studying management from a renowned French school and working with Louis Vuitton and management from University College of London both sisters came back to India to explore the possibilities of working with traditional Indian textiles.
“We came back to India with a will to employ our dying weaver society with the best wages, use the profits to employ more of these wonderful craftsmen,” says co-founder Anchal.
“Most of the weavers were living below poverty line and many weaver families had stopped working on their signature weave due to scarcity of work,” Anchal adds.
The brand was showcasing their collection in Delhi over the weekend through Ibtida-A Weave Story, which is the story of Ohfab meeting with its weaver.
“The weaver community has long been neglected and weavers haven’t been given their due. So they are now moving to other professions,” recalls Anchal.
According to Anchal there were some weavers who were earning Rs 150- Rs200 a day, which makes it barely 6,000 per month.
“We decided to fund the weaver’s looms and convinced them to get back to weaving.”
While working directly with weavers, without the middlemen, the brand was able to control that part and provide them better wages.
The brand originally began its operation from Banaras.
Working at the grassroots level with the weaving communities in various parts of India Anchal recalls “This weaver family had stopped working on their signature weave due to scarcity of work. Lakshman bhai went to the Gulf to work as a labourer . We happen to meet him and decided to get him back to weaving. Reviving bootis and weaves which were a 150 years old.”
“Ibtida collection has 9 signature sarees from Lakshman Bhai's weaving techniques. Uses the 150 year old booti. The bootis are minadaar where each booti has another colour for filling (as shared in the images below) and use the karhua weaving technique” adds Anchal.
In terms of branding and promotion Ohfab is right now focusing through social media. Ohfab offers collection of hand woven saris, dupattas and fabrics from Varanasi, Paithan, Kota with motifs and techniques that are hundreds of years old.