Spinning Organic Desi Cotton Trends
When Ananthoo, a telecom engineer returned from Europe to India giving up his lucrative career in 2006, farmer suicides in Maharashtra wrenched his heart. A significant number of them who killed themselves were cotton farmers. That burden inspired him to develop a sustainable livelihood model. Thanks to his perseverance, in 2014 he established Tula, a not for profit organic cotton attire brand, which is now helping a few hundred desi cotton farmers in Maharashtra get a fair price and lead a life of dignity.
Tula helps desi cotton farmers grow cotton organically. They procure it, hand spin, hand weave, dye naturally, manually stitch, sell the garments and plough the margins back into their livelihoods.
This has redefined fashion, proving organic cotton can be trendy and can be 100% organic in all stages including dyeing.
At their outlet at Chennai’s Adyar, Tula has organic clothing for everyone, from newborns to adults. This clothline has many specialities. “We work with cotton farmers help them grow indigenous cotton rainfed and organic, procure, hand spun, hand weave, natural dye and bring out the lightest garments on this planet” Ananthoo told tellmystory.in
Funded initially by fifteen friends with a lakh rupees each, this social enterprise repaid them in four years and has now achieved an annual turnover of a crore. Fifty percent of their sale comes from their exhibitions across India, which he sees as “a great opportunity to sensitise and showcase their cause and model so people can relate to it”.
Tula (www.tula.org.in), Ananthoo says ensures desi cotton farmers get double the market price. It helps around 300 livelihoods including 45 farmers and 60 weavers. On what’s that he loves about his work, Ananthoo says “Its lovely to impact livelihoods with dignified compensation besides reviving some of losing arts like hand weaving, hand spinning and batting.
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