Craft Category: Handmade Textile

Craft Location: Maheshwar

Specialization: Maheshwari Silk & cotton handloom textile with dobby design

Name of Artisan: Sameer Ansari

Contact No: 8982190068


Address: pilli Mitti, Maheshwar

Sameer, 22, perched on the charpai at his beautiful handloom home tucked in the quaint lanes of Maheshwar shared with us his journey with handloom. He is the fifth generation to continue the family legacy of weaving on handloom.

His grandfather used to weave on power looms in UP and Burhanpur. And then the family moved to Maheshwar as the market saw a downfall in power looms. Sameer’s father started weaving on handloom and with time his expertise grew. He was also honoured with the best weaver award by Delhi Crafts Council.

Sameer was born in Maheshwar and grew up with the clack-clack of handloom in the house. So he was always curious about it. He started learning to weave since he was in 8th grade. His interest grew in the family business and he thought of many possibilities for the future. He graduated from High School and then continued full time weaving. With 12-13 years of experience, he now specialises in the border work and can run that in full warp. He mainly works with the blend of cotton & silk and silk with silk yarns. “I am very happy with the handloom work”, he says.

His grandfather was an expert of weaving and knew the operations side well, so his main contribution was in increasing the production. His uncle is known for his specialisation in design. And his father possesses efficient weaving skills. Basically, handloom work runs very strongly in the family’s blood. Sameer’s combined efforts with his father allows him to deliver the best quality in the shortest time. That is his USP.

Handloom market in Maheshwar is facing various kinds of challenges, like increased supply due to new entrants, fall in price, deterioration of quality and many more. Sameer says, new entrants in the market do not possess enough knowledge and know-how’s. Their motive is simply making more money in less time. And that is why the quality is ruining. This is not sustainable way of doing the business. Nevertheless, Sameer is working hard, fighting all such challenges and growing up with his USP of giving best quality. Sameer’s father believes that, if a traditional art form has to be revived then the focus on quality has to be high on priority list.

Sameer enrolled himself in a business focused training in 2010 conducted by WomenWeave. He joined that program and was trained in English language, client handling, design, textile technology, marketing/advertisement, computer, social media and sustainability. This boosted his confidence to grow his handloom business to even greater heights. And he did so.