Ashanti Blaize, NBCDFW
A traditional Indian printing technique inspires a new green fashion business in Dallas.
What started as a couple of sketches and a dream turned into a budding business based on a green concept for two Dallas women.
"My whole ideas was to keep this printing technique alive," said Bindu Kasinadhuni, co-owner of Chakra Design Studio.
About six months ago, Kasinadhuni approached her friend Sara Hignite about a business she wanted to start.
"We were playing with the kids and she said, 'You know, I'm thinking about getting back into the workforce," said Hignite. "'I think I might do a kids clothing line, are you in?' 'Yes I'm in, let's do it.'"'
They didn't want to do just any clothing line. The two decided on a children's collection inspired by Kasinadhuni's Indian culture.
"All the dyes, everything, is derived from vegetable matter and they're dyed by these group of printers in a small village where I grew up," said Kasinadhuni.
That small village is in South India, where Kasinadhuni spent five months just last year.
"Initially it was for four weeks and I had this in mind," she said.
In those five months, Kasinadhuni stayed busy.
"She was actually working in these printer's workshops with these artisans," said Hignite. "Boiling in 120 degree heat, boiling these vegetable dies."
When Kasinadhuni returned, Chakra Design Studio was born.
"She had bags and bags full of clothes," said Hignite. "Our clothes, our collection."
Each design is true to the Kalamkari dyeing and Indian block print design. Each piece is made by hand in Bindu's village. For Hignite and Kasinadhuni, green was the only way to go with their new business.
"The whole core of this kind of printing is being green," said Kasinadhuni. "If I don't do it this way, there's no other way."
Their commitment to maintaining a green business doesn't end at keeping to the traditional Kalamkari art form.
"Its also about not being harmful to the artisans who are working with these materials," said Hignite. "Also being non-toxic and safe for the children who are wearing the garments."
"Its' been great," said Visneau. "I mean, when you say that it's local, people really respond to that."
Hignite and Kasinadhuni have taken a fresh, green take on an ancient and celebrated art form.
"That's exciting to bring back the technique I've been seeing ever since I was a little child," said Kasinadhuni.
Now they're passing on a piece of history and an appreciation for the Earth onto a new generation for years to come.
For more information about Chakra Design Studio go to www.chakradesignstudio.com.