After over 15 years of being involved with MarketPlace as a volunteer, board member – and customer – I was finally in Mumbai. This was my first chance to see in person the places, people and activities I had been hearing about and writing about.
I went almost directly from the airport to the MarketPlace workroom, where the leaders from the different producer cooperatives were aving a meeting to discuss problems, triumphs, and just generally share experiences and friendship. At least, that’s what was happening in one part of the room.
At the other end, an embroidery workshop was busy plying needles and floss. It’s time for the design workshop, when the next (in this case Spring 2012) MarketPlace line is put together. Adele, the designer, was in between the two groups, working with garments hung on racks and occasionally checking in with the embroiderers.
Adele also joined the other group to talk to the producer heads about some of the innovative ways MarketPlace is incorporating chindis, the leftover fabric scraps, into new designs, and had them try their hands at designing a chindi-embellished bag. She even used these fabric scraps (pulled from a huge bag full of a riot of different colors and prints) to cover ugly plastic hangers. (I tried to help out by doing one, though mine turned out a little unstable.)