Khadi is only seemingly expensive. It is wrong to compare khadi with other cloth by comparing the prices of given lengths. The inexpensiveness of khadi consists in the revolution of one’s taste. The wearing of khadi replaces the conventional idea of wearing clothes for ornament by that of wearing them for use.
– Mahatma Gandhi, Young India, 7-8-1924
Khadi, the humble and low-profile cloth has for long been the representation of India’s drive for self-sustenance. It was popularised by Mahatma Gandhi in the 1920s. What started off as a relief programme for rural India soon became profoundly associated with the nation’s freedom movement.
Khadi is essentially a hand woven and hand spun fabric which can be woven into cotton, silk and wool. Although known for its coarse and rugged texture, the fabric is extremely light, airy and never uncomfortable. To this date, the cloth is woven on a spinning wheel called the Charkha, thus earning the identity of handloom, as opposed to the power loom products that flood the markets. The beauty of this fabric can further be affirmed by the fact that no two fabrics will ever be exactly the same. Such is the play of texture that every cloth has its own distinct feel which cannot be replicated.
Although Khadi is produced in almost all parts of India, every region has its own style of weaving, patterns and fabric mixes. But much like the diversity of India, there is a common thread that binds them together – Khadi’s versatility. The fabric keeps you just as cool in the summers as it warms you in the winter, making it the perfect wear for all seasons.