"Before, my family could only sell products outside our state through traders who would give us very little money for our work, but that was the only option we had."
"I am Adil, from the state of Kashmir. Our family has been preserving the magical Kashmiri weaving legacy for generations. We specialize in stoles and shawls, in a workshop that was started by my grandfather, continued by my father, and now me.
"I grew up watching my grandparents and parents at work, always amazed by the way colors fused together to create different motifs and patterns – for me, it was just like magic! The process of putting yarn across the loom to create colorful combinations is an absolute art. For my parents, it was just about the passion and family tradition that they inherited, they actually never thought beyond what they could do within Kashmir. My father has received the Master Craftsman State Award, but he never exhibited his work outside Kashmir. When I finished school, I took it up on me to show our family legacy to the rest of the world.
"Before, my family could only sell products outside our state through traders. They would give us very little money for our work, but that was the only option we had. I realized that I could represent my family and our craft, and not depend on others. So, my father and I went to Delhi and met government officials at the Handicraft Department, and we got the opportunity to participate in exhibitions. Since then we have been participating in many government-sponsored exhibitions throughout India, including Delhi (Suraj Kunj, Craft Museum, Delhi Haat), Bangalore, Lucknow etc.
"Participating directly in exhibitions without middlemen was a big achievement for us. We want to present our products directly to the customer and exchange comments, so when I happened to meet Novica, I was thrilled. The concept of having my own story on the site, and to have people get to know who they are purchasing, from is a great feeling."