Our Story

Kanchipuram is known as ‘The Silk City of India”. The economy of the city is mostly dependent on silk weaving from handloom industries while tourism is also a major occupation with the city’s rich cultural heritage. Kanchipuram sarees are known for their technical excellence and intricate traditional designs. The most popular colours used are blue, black, green and mustard. The popular designs in the border are brick, birds, animals, leaves, flowers, mango, etc.

About 10,000 families are involved in handloom silk weaving in Kanchipuram area. Almost every village around Kanchipuram city was involved in handloom weaving until recently. Because of certain challenges faced, many families, especially youngsters have opted out of weaving as an occupation.

Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) in collaboration with Nokia has conceptualized The Digital Cluster Development Programme to empower the artisans, weavers and entrepreneurs in Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu. 3 villages are chosen for KanchiLoom project and in three years’ time, convert them comprehensively into a digital cluster that adopts all possible digital tools to lead a holistic and economically prosper lives without migration.

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Community Information and Resource Centre (CIRC):

CIRC’s of KanchiLoom are set up with computers, printers, scanners and all basic digital equipment together with Internet connectivity. CIRC spreads digital literacy and provides access to information-dark and marginalized communities. Setting up CIRC in Kanchipuram will help the weavers get empowered by exposing them to internet, new designs, market linkages; connecting them to both domestic and international market, helping them access the market, enhancing production according to the changing needs of domestic and international silk lovers and in long run, stay self-sustained.

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Digital Designing and Archiving

Digital intervention in design through CAD/CAM allows weavers to introduce modern touch to the traditional designs, ensure product diversification and global market access. It will also enhance effectiveness and efficiency of the weaver community. DCDP also aims at developing interest of the youth through digital literacy, modern designing techniques on computer, introducing new and fresh product range for Kanchipuram silk and other interventions so that youth migration can be reduced and more weavers can be prepared for the future. The traditional art can thus be preserved.

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Capacity Building and Skilling

Apart from digital literacy and information, KanchiLoom also acts as an agent to build capacities of communities in the region. Numbers of workshops are organized at the center revolving around issues like menstrual health, skill development, environment consciousness in collaboration with other organizations and government bodies. Focusing on primary & tertiary skill development of cluster occupants to enhance their employability, livelihood, income and living conditions.

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Entrepreneurship Development

Believing in this philosophy of giving back to the community, KanchiLoom is dedicated not only towards benefiting the population of Kanchipuram through its organizational initiatives, but also towards encouraging the people for entrepreneurship and empowering them for true utilization of their skills for the betterment of society. With KanchiLoom, we are building capacities of weavers, artisans, craftsmen, farmers and many other small scale businesses to flourish. This platform of the weavers, for the weavers and by the weavers, is managed by a network of weavers’ self-help groups through a common platform. It is a social entrepreneurial initiative towards escalating the sustainability levels and livelihood of the weavers’ community.

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Wireless for Community

Wireless Network for Communities (W4C) provides last mile connectivity to people in KanchiLoom block enabling them to stay connected worldwide. Wireless specifically in weaving clusters provides weavers a scope to develop their businesses online through e-commerce and social media. It provides a platform for weavers to lift themselves from labors to entrepreneurs. KanchiLoom acts as a facilitator in transitioning skillful weavers from mere daily wage earners to self-dependent entrepreneurs through various means.

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Handloom Tourism

Highly influenced by the Hindu religion, Kanchipuram is home to many majestic temples like the marvelous Varadaraja Temple built during the 10th century by the Vijayanagar kings; the Kamakshi Amman Temple, which is associated with Adi Shankaracharya; the Devarajaswami Temple devoted to the Hindu god Lord Vishnu; the Kanchi Kailasanathar Temple is constructed in the Dravidian style of architecture and is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is probably the oldest structure in Kanchipuram.

Our Products

Silk weaving was the traditional and native occupation of Kanchipuram. KanchiLoom silk sarees are very unique for their design and originality. Two types of looms used for production of the silk sarees are Frame loom and the Pit loom. Throw shuttle is used to make the design (bootis) on the saree. Kanchipuram sarees are known for their technical excellence and intricate traditional designs. The most popular colors used are blue, black, green and mustard. The popular designs in the border are brick, birds, animals, leaves, flowers, mango, etc.

Conscious Clothing

Every product is hand woven in weaving households of Kanchipuram, strengthening livelihoods of the weavers and protecting the age of old art of weaving.

Skillfully Crafted

The weavers in the region have been crafting loving fabric since time immemorial. One piece of fabric often requires 8 hours of labour and concentration.

Lovingly Hand woven

Looms are threads are sacred to weavers. Each piece of cloth woven has a personal story and lots of love.

Comfort and Quality

Woven with great care and eye for details, cottons and silks used are of highest quality, and colours used are safe, natural and skin friendly.

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