There is an air of peace and calm as you walk on to the terrace of Kavade Attic on 1st Main in Sheshadripuram. The cosy ambience is set up with cane mats on the floor and lots of charkhas (spinning wheels). Madhav Sahasrabudhe, a mechanical engineer from Pune, catches your eye.
Dressed in a khadi kurta and trousers made from the yarn he spun, the man is engrossed in spinning. Madhav is in the city for the recently-concluded two-day spinning workshop, organised by Kavade Attic. As he spins, the spinner talks about the art and the calming effect it has on one’s mind.
How did he take to spinning? “When I worked as an engineer, I met a man named Dada Bhonsle, a landlord who worked every day for two hours on his farm and consumed only what he grew. Touched by his lifestyle I went to live with him for a while to learn and discovered he was also into spinning. He would spin yarn, not just for himself, but for his family. That is how I took to spinning eight years ago,” says Madhav as his nimble fingers effortlessly create the yarn from fluffy balls of cotton.
“Watching Bhonsle making yarn made me realise spinning is connected to one’s lifestyle. It makes you realise the effort that goes to the services you take for granted. For instance, electricity. You turn a switch and the light comes on. You don’t realise the number of hands that have toiled to make it so easy for you. Similarly, for the yarn too, the farmer works hard, grows the cotton and collects it. He has toiled to cultivate it, someone else processes the cotton, you spin it and give it to the weaver, who in turn makes fabric. This shows there is an independence and one should understand that,” adds Madhav as he tightens the yarn.
He adds that what is true for spinning is true for all cottage industries and life in and around villages. “These chains use only natural resources, which are renewable. Now that the world is heading to a future with market-driven products, we have to think about the energy we can save and reduce our carbon footprint. The process of spinning is supported by rain and human labour and you can fulfil your basic need of clothing without resorting to any additional form of external energy,” explains Madhav, who spins for at least an hour every day and comes up with “40 metres” of yarn a year.
This, he says, has made his life simple as he gives the weaver the yarn, who either weaves a fabric for him or gives fabric in exchange. “All you have to do is give him his making charges. Forty meters of yarn is sufficient for a family,” adds the spinner. He then gives each of us a charkha and shows us how to spin. “Don’t think much. You have to learn to let go. Don’t hold the cotton tight either,” says the man as he demonstrates the craft. Surprisingly, most of us manage to spin yarn of varied textures – some thick, some thin, and some a blend of thick and thin.
“Don’t worry about the texture. The best part of spinning is it is easy as you can pick it up in half an hour. And no yarn goes waste either. If it is thin, the weaver will use it to create saris, dresses and if it is thick or a blend of thick and thin, it is used for tapestry, towels, napkins, rugs and so on. So there is no such thing as bad yarn. Only caution to take is to make it strong by twisting the yarn once you have managed pull it out of the cotton,” he says and adds “sky is the limit for improvisations in this,” states the man, who then gives us a brief peek into the history of the portable version of the charkha he uses. “During Gandhiji’s time, the spinning wheel was bigger and heavier. They were in Yerawada jail, Pune, and realised they wanted to make smaller spinning wheels instead of carrying the heavy ones. That is how the portable version came to be and is also called Yerawada chakras, which later came to be known as charkha,” explains Madhav, who adds that there is a need to keep this art alive for the next generation. “I believe people are fed up of the market-driven lifestyle and are looking for some simplicity. So I would say we are going, not back to the past, but ahead. We are preparing to face the future, say 50 years and ahead with simplicity.”
Published in the Metro Plus, section of The Hindu dated : July 26, 2017
Saturday, 15 April 2017 13:23
This workshop was based on robotics using Lego Wedo construction kit tool where we designed our own interactive machines and then programmed it. This is the base for children in their lifelong learning. The next Lego Wedo is on 24 April at Kavade Attic. Hurry Up!
Theatre games & lots of fun, making props, a wonderful performance by the kids & pizza party too!. The next one is from 24th Apr-29th Theatre workshop at Lavender lane, Kothanur Anuradha Rao, Sandeep Jain, Untitled Arts Foundation.
A workshop where we explored the little happenings in nature, waiting for the ant to make its choice for food, feeling barks of trees, noticing the leaves, homes, climbing up trees, Bird watching & so much more Games, art work with our collections, jewellery.. Dr Lakshmi was kind enough to open the RRI campus to our little team! with Abhisheka Krishnagopal.
Stories throw light on everything. Lavanya and Sowmya throw some light on the stages of women through stories that are close to their hearts.
In which stage of your life are you now?
Will the stories they share touch a chord?
Make a difference in you?.
Minti Jain who decided to keep her folk dance experience alive from her student life in J. Krishnamurti schools, will be moderating the sessions. Presently she is a theatre trainer at Bangalore Little Theatre, and has taught folk dances at numerous workshops at BLT and other venues.
Ameen Haque from StoryWallahs will be narrating some of his favorite Love Stories this Sunday evening in a mix of English & Hindi, prose and poetry. Come and listen to stories that touch upon various dimensions of love. Who knows, in these stories you may find something that resonates with yours?
Thursday, 15 September 2016 18:32
Presenting HOW COW NOW COW by Sandbox Collective
Name: How Cow Now Cow
Directed by: Vinod Ravindran
Performed by: Sachin Gurjale, Rency Philip and Anirudh Mahesh
As the festive season of Dasara approaches with multitudes of rituals, pujas and festivities, each and every household is busy mustering their doll treasures. It's for the annual Bombe Habba (doll festival), a phenomenon distinctly ‘Mysuru’ in its flavour and appeal.