Posted in Sarees and Textiles
The swirl of colour.The glint of gold. The sensuousness of silk all woven together to produce the silk kanjivaram sari that lights a small spark of desire in the most prudent of hearts. It is with this beauty that the name Angadi is associated.
The House of Angadi is one of India’s oldest and foremost textile business families with a history of over 600 years in the textile trade. Although the family has been largely known for its iconic retail stores at Bangalore (Angadi Silks and Angadi Galleria), the family has been an established player across the textile value chain for several decades. From designing and manufacturing exquisite silk saris to the manufacture and export of garments and home furnishings the Angadi family has straddled virtually every sphere of textiles over the years.
The family first acquired fame as masters of their craft when theyemerged as the court weavers for the royal court of the Maharajah SerfojiBhonsle-II and were informally bestowed the title of the ‘Angadivals’.
In 1904 the family established a formal wholesale business of silk saris under the name of R.K.T & Bros selling largely to retailers and the aristocratic families of South India. As demand for their products grew they gradually drifted into retail trade and soon retail emerged as the mainstay of the business.
In 1954 R.Kothandaraman (R.K Raman) took charge of the family business.
Greatly enthused by the early wave of industrialization sweeping through post independent India R. K Raman reorganized the family’s weaving operations at Tirucherai into a centralized manufacturing unit, creating in the process India’s first fully integrated Handloom weaving facility. In partnership with famed artist and designer, Padma Sri awardee SudhirSoujwal, R.K Raman infused new life into the otherwise staid silk sari. New techniques of weaving were introduced to adapt the hand drawn artworks of the design team into fabric. The as yet novel shedding mechanisms of Jacquards were introduced for the first time to weaving silk saris in the south and other techniques such as tie & dye which were hitherto confined to cotton were introduced for the first time to silk weaving in south India.
It is indeed this edge in design and innovation and their roots as manufacturers that helps the House of Angadi stay ahead of the many other retailers selling Kanjivarams. Indeed while it has become fashionable for many retailers to claim themselves to be ‘manufacturers’ the Angadi family remains one of only a small handful of present day retailers who can genuinely trace back their roots as manufacturers and wholesalers.
In 2001 R.K RadhakrishnanChettiar the oldest surviving member of the Angadi family, bequeathed the longstanding legacy of the family to his grandson K. Radharaman, permitting him to use the family name “Angadi” in his business venture.Eager to carve out a distinct identity for himself he set up his first retail venture Angadi Silks in the then exclusively residential suburb of Jayanagar. Within a short span of time Angadi Silks has emerged as the preferred choice of discerning customers from all over India including the whos who of Bangalore. While many of the family members have continued to manage their businesses independently, The House of Angadi and the many branches of the family continue to provide leadership to the Indian handloom and textile industry in their independent capacities.
Read the original article here : TOI