Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sales at the Akruthi Vastra exhibition in Hyderabad were good in spite of the rain and the bandh, and malkha was introduced to a buying public that would normally not be interested in the khadi look. Both this annual event and the venue are well-known to the elite market of Hyderabad, and the stalls that catered to their taste did roaring business. The event was very well organized by the Crafts Council of Andhra Pradesh: they collected the cash so the stall holders did not have to worry about handling money. They organized credit card sales as well.

It was a pleasure to see Ansari's stall where the traditional Banarasi designs of sarees have been revived and also adapted as dupattas. Raw Mango had some interesting developments in Maheshwari and Chanderi, perhaps too daring for the Hyderabad gentry.

Vinita Pittie, the well-known designer from Hyderabad visited our stall, and some of our mail-order customers were fellow stall holders. Some of our customers at the show had heard of malkha and were pleased to find us. Subsequent sales at the malkha shop have benefited from this exposure. Our stall was managed by Sathyam & Venkatesh with help from neophyte Sandeep. Pavani, our newest recruit, was able to come only on the last day, and both the young ones enjoyed the excitement of the continuous cutting, packing, billing and delivery.

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