India Dairies II: Empowering Women with Ammachi Labs

glorka and ammachi labs
This year we arrived at a beautiful village Katthiwada in Madya Pradesh. Here we will be living and working with women for the next couple of weeks. 

It is interesting to see how different the group of Katthiwada women is from the previous one. They are more smily and more receptive to westerners than the tribal women from Chhattisgarh State, where we were last year, and that's understandable. 

glorka and ammachi labs

Tribal people from the remote villages are more reserved to themselves and usually avoid outsiders, so it took us some time to find the path to their hearts last year. Katthiwada village though is a bit bigger and more well known in the state. They have quite a big market and a lot of visitors from other places. Women are more open and ready to dive in into the new project! 
We started our training with working on various hand stitching techniques. All the women are inspired and excited to be coming to classes. Some of them have to walk 6 km to get to the class! We have a mother and a daughter, and one expecting, glowing in her own special beauty, lady.  
glorka and ammachi labs
We give them assignments and ask to do many exercises. It is amazing to see how different the approach to the assignments is in India. They all are eager to help each other, explain and support, hold each others fabric pieces, help to thread the needles... They probably are not aware of an individualist approach to work, and it is fascinating and very sweet to witness it. 
Today we learned hem stitch, vertical stitch and button hole stitch, lock-in stitch, making corners and hemming on the machine.
glorka and ammachi labs
Tomorrow - we are moving to the rolling hem stitch and soon - to making sample dresses!

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