Weavers of wellness: Wearing ayurveda
The handloom weavers of Balaramapuram near Thiruvananthapuram have given a fresh lease of life to the ancient science of ayurvastra—a branch of ayurveda. In ayurvastra, yarn or fabric is treated with dyes prepared from over 1,200 herbs, like holy basil and turmeric. Some of these herbs grow wild around the brick building, out of which functions the Handloom Weavers Development Society. Ayurvastra garments are said to aid in the treatment of skin infections, diabetes and hypertension. International design houses like Lecoanet Hemant source fabric from the society.
The herbally treated yarn (or fabric) is dried in a dark room, the floor of which is covered in medicinal leaves