Khadi: Indian Craftsmanship

Khadi is a highly significant cloth for the people of India - so much so, that the symbol at the centre of the Indian flag is a spinning wheel, famously used by Mahatma Gandhi while campaigning for Indian independence.

This month, ISSEY MIYAKE will present an exhibition at its New York Tribeca store, exploring the symbolism and creation of Indian Khadi cloth. It is a laborious process: first, cotton is hand-spun on a spinning wheel charkha, thread by thread. Then, the threads are brought together through slow hand-weaving, eventually forming the luxurious Khadi cotton fabric. 

Since the 1980s, ISSEY MIYAKE has collaborated with a great advocate of India’s cultural heritage, Martand Singh. Singh, who passed away in 2017, worked hard to promote Indian textiles and called Khadi the “fabric of freedom”, due to the cloth’s role as a symbol for Indian independence. Singh helped Indian textiles to gain well-deserved recognition worldwide and inspired many of ISSEY MIYAKE’s designs. 

For the month of August, visitors can witness a special exhibit on Khadi and the philosophy behind it at ISSEY MIYAKE's flagship store. Find out about the history of Khadi, discover the production process and view footage  filmed on-site in India of the people who formed the backbone of Martand Singh’s activities. 

Until 22 August 2019. ISSEY MIYAKE, 119 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10013

Blog post by Jessica Edney. Read next: Anne Laure Camilleri's article The Khadi Spirit in the Treasure issue. Subscribe to Selvedge here.

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