TTL SPOTLIGHT |’Old World Cotton’ of India |

Indian Textiles‘ by John Gillow and Nicholas Barnard is a brilliant, detailed read- so much so it takes few flicks through the same few pages to get an understanding of the depth of history linked to textile techniques that exist even today.

With cotton, being the earliest and most prominent of fabrics produced in India, it was only fair the insights found and further researched from this book began with cotton.

‘Old World Cotton’ is a term new to TTL’s glossary- found when looking into the properties of Gossypium herbaceous upon reading that it was grown vastly in India ‘by the sixth or seventh century AD’ (J. Gillow, N. Barnard, 2008).

Ecologically the cultivating properties of this species of cotton prove to be extremely beneficial as it has the ability to withstand drought, and therefore does not require much more than rainfall to grow. The results of these conditions are that the fibres are shorter, and coarse and therefore must be spun together to create a sufficient length of yarn.

With this in mind TTL will revisit and aim to bring to light, the fashion and textiles available using the sustainable ‘Old World Cotton’ in India today.


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