We’re excited to host Dosa designer Christina Kim for an exclusive in-store event on Thursday, June 11th and Friday, June 12th. Stop by Sixth and Lamar from noon to 6pm to meet Kim, shop her collection and get a sneak peek of her special dye project - Temple Blessings - which uses temple flower offerings.
Named one of Time Magazine's “Innovators” in 2004, she often puts extensive research into her many unique and thought-provoking projects, consulting with various experts globally, creating lasting partnerships. Often working with local artisans and craftsmen, her newest collaboration, Temple Blessings, has a fascinating history taken from Hindu ritual. The process beings in Hindu temples throughout India, as shrines of deities are swathed in colorful flower garlands as gestures of reverence, offered by devotees to invoke the deities’ divine blessings and healing energies. As is Hindu ritual, every few days, as fresh offerings replenish the old, wilted flowers are gathered and discarded in water.
Adiv, a natural dye and sewing workshop in Mumbai, contracts with SiddhiVinayak Temple and several other local temples to receive their floral waste. Marigolds, roses, hibiscus, and coconut husks are collected, sorted, used to dye cloth, and eventually composted in a beautifully holistic and symbiotic exchange. Flower blessings are given new breath, re-registered on cloth as a physical reminder of their original intention.
Delivered twice a week, heaps of blossoms cover the ground like a carpet of flowers. Garlands are sorted and individual petals plucked by hand in preparation for dyeing. Petals are either used fresh or dried for later use. In addition to temple flowers, onion skins and pomegranate rinds donated by local food vendors are used. Only a few other basic ingredients are needed: water, fabric, a household kitchen steamer, and agile hands.
The young artisans at Adiv have all come to the center with no dyeing experience, however, they enjoy full creative freedom and learn to dye by experimenting. Techniques often reference tradition, but the young dyers remain unhindered by convention, encouraged to explore their own ideas.
Founded in 2006, the center allows young adults from low income areas to partner with highly skilled artisans, who teach them trade skills and bring light to India’s age old crafts. What began as two pots in a kitchen has grown to foster a small group of young men and women into steady income earners. Mukhtar, who joined Adiv in 2011 as a former mechanic and doer of odd jobs, has become a talented dyer and dye floor manager. He just bought his first scooter. Yogita is Adiv’s youngest dyer; at 21 years of age, she runs her family’s household as its sole earner.