Living Blue, Bangladesh
natural indigo dye
Putting the painful and oppressive history of British indigo trading behind, natural indigo dye, produces irreplaceable colours and durable worn effects, is once again come alive in Bangladesh. With a carefully planned sustainable production cycle, the indigo initiative by Living Blue is integrated into the agricultural cycle where fermentation discharge is used to replace chemical nitrogen fertilizer. The initiative is creating numerous jobs from plant harvesters, dye extractors, dyers, shibori and kheta artisans. The monetary benefits go to savings, insurance, medical expenses, education, homestead repairs and repaying debts, to ultimately exit the cycle of poverty.
The dheu, or the “wave”, is a ripple pattern created by using increasing layers of khadi fabric and the application of jod and bejod kheta stitches – a specialty belongs to the regional communities in the Northwest and Southeast of Bangladesh. Sharmin (above), an excellent heritage dheu quilt, along with a group of women in the local community, is able to take care of her home duties while quilting at home. The group work together towards eradicating extreme poverty in their area.