Monday, January 18, 2010

Contemporary India - Soma and Ratan Textiles

For those just tuning in, I was in India for a couple of weeks and thought I'd give a bit of a 'craft rundown' and what I saw, along with a bit of a cultural tour.
Next on the textile shop tour is Soma, which is similar in styling to Anohki but slightly cheaper. It sells a HUGE range of hand block printed tablecloths, napery, light quilts, bedspreads, and lots of quilted items (little bags, tea cosies, placemats etc) - not really my thing, but there were heaps of tourists spending up big! They also have some clothing: sarees, cute baby wear, quilted crop jackets, nightwear and Indian clothing. One of the women working in the store lived in Brisbane for a few years - small world!
Ratan Textiles was my favourite place. It was founded over 25 years ago and is housed in a cottage and has an interesting mix of very arty pieces (see pictures below) as well as more traditional homewares, very, very cute kid's clothing, adult clothing and a huge range of quilts towards the back. The website doesn't reflect the really cool, contemporary graphics and items I saw in the store unfortunately.

Two of these cushion covers made the trip home for my lovely flatmates - I especially like the mix of outline and digital printing (besides, camels are just funny).

My favourite piece was the 'colour testing' hanging (could be turned into a quilt cover). It looks to be made from strips of cotton which were used to test colours on - I especially loved the handwriting incorporated as well.

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