In the fast-paced fashion industry, there needs to be a buffer that could allow people to scrutinize their choices of materials in selecting clothing. There are a lot of considerations to be made to promote sustainable and responsible fashion. Regardless, what’s most important is starting somewhere and Pallavi Sarup of Hamesha Project started with her heritage.
Pallavi is a first-generation Indian American who has always intended to honor her South Asian craft. After years of quest and experiments, she found the world of natural dye. She learned about the connection of natural dye tradition to nature and the garments they created.
Her discovery prompted her to strengthen her relationship with farmers and artist organizations to better understand the role of natural dye in today’s apparel industry. It has opened her eyes to how her ancestors worked on farms to grow natural dye products. Unfortunately, many succumb to chemical dyeing nowadays which could be detrimental to health and threatens regions to continue to lose their tradition of natural dye craft and growing natural dye plant materials.
She eventually founded the Hamesha Project to bring awareness to South Asian craft and sustainable fashion practices. “ I really wanted a name that represented the permanence and memorialization,” she said. This has birthed Hamesha which means “always” in Sanskrit. As how roads will always lead home, she thinks that the name was perfect for what she wants to achieve.
While there are a couple of struggles for being a cultural business owner, Pallavi keeps going as the community showed excitement and eagerness to participate. She also started working with an incredible designer, Swasti Mittal, who is the brains behind the branding. “I sell craft kits that teach people how to replicate South Asian craft at home which means I have to do a lot of work to ensure my messaging comes across,” she explained. She ensures that what Hamesha offers is educational, empowering, and relevant to its target audience.
As it works toward becoming a key player in the sustainable fashion coalition, it has more plans in store to create new South Asian craft kits that represent other regional crafts in India. She envisions nurturing “more spaces and opportunities to uplift artists both in South Asia and within the diaspora” as she consistently increases awareness and practice of natural dyes.
It hasn’t been easy for Pallavi to push for the Hamesha project. “Following your dream is one of the scariest things you can do,” she said as she mulls over how the Asian-American community prioritizes stability and practicality. However, she pointed out, “There will be ideas, opportunities, and extenuating life circumstances that will come your way that you owe it to yourself to nurture and pursue.”
Pallavi did not want to fail herself nor her heritage and cause she hold dear. She braced herself for what has come, now allowing her to do the Hamesha Project full-time. Her quest to conquer her colorful dream has always been rooted in her home. Today, she shares it with the world.
To know more about Hamesha Project and its upcoming events, follow @hameshaproject!