Jhumoor: A celebration of Bengal’s Handloom Sarees
Updated: Feb 7
Discipline, precision and rhythm is a prerequisite for any good art. Any artist could tell you that. And none so more than handloom weavers who take years to train themselves to weave motifs with absolute perfection. What we might call pedantic, these weavers are trained to observe and correct the subtlest of variations in the designs they produce.
“Every year we produce some new designs, but most of the designs that do really well in the market are reproduced every year, with slight changes in colour and texture,” says a handoom weaver from Shantipur.
Most of the weaves take a long time to finish. A simple handloom saree with a basic circular buty weave could itself take 2-3 days to finish. On the other hand, a more complex, multi-layered Jamdani weave could take 3-6 months to complete. That is why handloom industries are probably the most labour-intensive industries in the world.
A saree is not just a garment, it is a six yard long story. The story begins in the hands of the weaver who threads together this beautiful piece of art. It is thereon passed on to the market, where it changes hands across multiple traders before it finally finds its place in the wardrobe of a beautiful lady.
Tant and Jamdani are traditional handloom sarees that have been around for generations. It is a part of the legacy and culture of all families in Bengal. Even though today’s metropolitan woman does not wear a Tant saree regularly, one is sure to find multiple pieces with beautiful weaves in her wardrobe that she does wear occasionally with immense pride and joy. (and her own unique flair)
“Our concept is simple. We have been sourcing sarees from these weavers for the past 30 years and selling in Siliguri under the brand name of RG Bastra Bipani. We wanted to reach out Pan-India with a name everyone could connect with. That is how Jhumoor was born. ‘Jhumoor’ is a traditional Assamese dance. And that is exactly what the brand is about. It is a celebration of this humble craft that has been a source of both livelihood and joy for generations,” says Mr. Lalit Goyal, the founder and owner of RG Bastra Bipani (Jhumoor).
The sarees that Jhumoor offers are unique in a lot of ways. First, each of these designs are exclusive. None of them have seen the larger Indian market (especially online). Second, the prices at which Jhumoor offers these sarees to the consumers is a steal. “We have been working on reasonable and genuine margins from Day 1. That is the only reason why our customers here trust us. We want to continue that business practice as we expand our reach online,” says Mr. Goyal. The sarees being offered at the Jhumoor website are substantially cheaper than other handloom sarees being offered elsewhere.
Third, the experience that their website offers for shopping sarees is very smooth, clean and crisp. “We have tried to keep the clutter out, and offer a premium and minimal experience for something that deserves the spotlight. None of the other websites are as clean, or as fast. The best thing is, nor are they as easy on your pockets.”