An Audacious Dream

Knottted With Love is an initiative kickstarted by mother-daughter duo Mumtaz Nazim and Nilofar Shamim Haja. Over many cups of filter coffee (for mom) and payasam (for the daughter with a sweet tooth), a seed of an idea to do something with local crafts, contemporary design, and sustainable fashion took root.

It's true what they say about life coming a full circle! What began as an amateur hobby for Mumtaz in the 1980s, to dabble with fashion, design, and craftsmanship, evolved into a teaching practice over the course of 30 years, and has now evolved into an entrepreneurial passion to put Indian craftsmanship on the contemporary map.

It's a similar story for Nilofar, whose childhood was ruled by a fierce curiosity and love for colours, patterns, textiles, and crafts. A typical day in the 1990s would involve school, homework, Bombay chaat, and hours spent pouring over mom's fashion design and tailoring books procured from the neighborhood paperwala.

 

Two decades later and equipped with a degree in ancient civilizations and museum studies, many failed attempts at learning embroidery, and shaken by the growing climate crisis, it became clear to Nilofar that merely writing about art and design wasn't going to move the needle on the sustainability movement. What is needed is action, collaboration, education, and an initiative that allows everyone to contribute towards change. Knottted With Love emerged as the answer. 

 

Ecosystem Enablers

It's true that adversity brings out the hidden heroes inside all of us. It's what we experienced as we birthed our dream in May 2020, in the midst of a total COVID-19 lockdown in India. We began with ideating, planning, designing, sampling, testing at our ancestral home in Eruvadi, a tiny village in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

 

We went back to the drawing board again and again until we were certain that Knottted With Love would help move the needle on sustainable fashion.

We see ourselves as enablers rather than the owners of this ecosystem. We don't own the raw materials or resources derived from the planet, we didn't originate the crafts techniques, we don't have IP over our artisans' talents, and neither are we the first to co-create sustainable supply chain practices. 

What we do take absolute delight in is our imagination & passion for reimagining the contemporary forms of a craft tradition. We are working towards a future where this practice becomes a vital source of creativity, empowerment, and environment-positive enterprise for all stakeholders.