Craft Category: Handmade Textile

Craft Location: Maheshwar

Specialization: Maheshwari Silk & cotton handloom textile with dobby design

Name of Artisan: Wasim Ansari

Contact No: 9893432926


Address: Ahilya Vihar, Fort, Maheshwar

Wasim is the third generation to continue the family tradition of handloom weaving. His grandfather used to weave turbans of cotton some 50 years back for the royal people in Maheshwar and Indore. Later there were many developments brought in the handloom sector in Maheshwar. Then Wasim’s father also started working in this space. He started with weaving cotton-silk sarees and stoles from the loom installed at home. He used to weave for the master-weaver of the town. His mother also used to do the weaving. This way they achieved higher efficiency. After some experience, Wasim’s father got the job at Rehwa Society. He started as weaver and later got promoted to become the unit incharge.

Wasim’s mother continued the work at home. There are many processes involved in weaving like, yarn divide, yarn joining, weaving, spinning, warp installation etc. Wasim always had the curiosity to learn about handloom. He started feeding his curiosity through hands on experience with her mom through helping her at home with various such tasks. He started learning to weave when he was in 7th grade and became perfect at it by the time he finished high school.

He then pursued mechanical engineering course in college. Along with that, he also went through the training conducted by WomenWeave in 2009 for the young weavers of Maheshwar. In this training, he learned about client handling, design, textile technology, marketing/advertisement, computer, social media and sustainability. This training helped in sharpening his mind and as well as boosted the confidence and interest in starting a handloom business. Along with four other friends from the training, Nasir, Asif, Rahat and Samir, Wasim co-founded Fab Creations in 2013. They started weaving with one handloom themselves. And later they got 2-3 more looms. Currently they have 10-15 looms for their production and they are looking to expand further depending upon the orders. They have started hiring already trained weavers from the town too so that they can provide on time delivery.

Wasim gets the business orders through social media, social foundation, NGO’s and by establishing direct contacts with visitors. He specialises in the weaving of cotton, silk, and linen yarns.

It is not always a rosy picture. There are various challenges which Wasim and his team fights in their everyday business and overcome them strategically. For instance, many weavers practice cutting corner ways like, using the duplicate yarn to reduce the costing. This also affects the quality. And this leads to non-standardised rates in the market where unprofessional weavers are only trying to earn a living wage. Nevertheless, Wasim believes in giving the highest quality work without any compromise on the standards. And he does not mind charging accordingly as well because he has found the niche for himself.

He believes that, handloom work is of great skill and art. It is a craftsmanship that only a few can do justice to. He says, “compared to other businesses, we can earn more despite sitting at home and working with comfort”. He takes it as smart work and not hard work. He says, “I feel very proud to be skilled with this craft and I will give my best to bring the best out of it everyday”.

He is willing to expand more and experiment with newer fabrics in the future if he gets enough business from the industry.