Why Qissaa

Textile narratives!  Legends of the Indian artisan. Regional traditions, culture and history!

Qissaa is the yarn, anecdote, the story. The story of the artisan. The weave, the warp, the weft tells a tale. It is a living testimony to the skill and deft manipulations of the weaver. It talks of the transformation of the humble cocoon, the cotton pods to fabric -  to cover,  to adorn, to keep warm to tempt, to lure. It is a personal statement. The outfits designed, belong to the people, their habitat... the flora and fauna. The colours and the motifs sing paeans to the seasons. The peacocks dance heralding the monsoons, The trees blossom with flowers and fruits. The mango is the paisley, the creepers of trees embellish the backgrounds.

Mythology, Gods and Goddesses are used on fabrics to authenticate our spirituality. Krishna plays his flute, Rama pursues the golden deer, the mirage! In India every craft has sprung up with the influence of religious traditions. The finest creations of craftsmen were prepared for rituals and the most skilled of dyers, painters, weavers have congregated around main centres of religious worship.


India has always been sensitive to colours, which has formed the basis of poetic inspiration, of music, surcharged with the subtle nuances of mood. Red was the colour of love, and madder being fast it could not be washed away. Yellow was the colour of spring, filled with blossoms and the cry of mating birds. Gerwa or saffron, is the colour of the yogi, the seer who renounces the earth.


Indigo – Neel - Blue symbolism associated with the darker shades of blue, a rain filled cloud. Indigo conveys trust, truthfulness, and stability. It may have some of the authority and royalty of purple as indigo was considered a royal blue. Blue is also sadness. It is the soul of music. It is Krishna!


Many eras, legends are woven into the fabric of our society. The clothes tell the “Qissaas” of a bygone era and today and the promise of tomorrow.


Vibha Mitra, I the sutradhar! Literature, philosophy. Colours. Textures and designs   fascinated me as did Indian myths and traditions. I loved soaking in art – paintings, textiles, nature, people, stories. I took the plunge and indulged in a spree of handloom buying, creating and Qissaa was born. An eclectic lifestyle store. I hope this Qissaa can unfold many colourful moments for our collective consciousness in this journey for the Indian artisan!

The Qissaa albeit story of mine...

Foot note

Why “Sutradhar”... Sutra is the thread, the yarn, the narrative... “dhar “ is holding together, the knot, the weave. Together it is the raconteur, presenter. Hence the epithet! Bits and pieces of our life and the world are strung together... The qissaas, that are the essence of life and living. Threads of achievement, embroidered with happy colours and some greys. The weave talks of the bond with family friends and others to fabricate a meaningful journey on this earth.


Once upon a time...

The story travels back 30 years when my love affair with Indian textiles began. My ma marched me down to Dakshinapan and layered my wardrobe with the Indian idiom. My wedding trousseau was resplendent with the colours and textures of India. Kanjivaram, Bomkai, Sambalpuri, Pochampalli, Maheswari, Chanderi, Patola, Bandhani,Leheriya, Zardozi, Kantha, Dhakai, Baluchari, Gadhwal, Mysore crepe, Assamese Munga, Benarasi, Jamdani, Tussars.


I daresay the affair has become more passionate with time. I am one of a dying breed who unabashedly wears the six yards – EVERYWHERE!

My life did not please me so I created my life – Coco Chanel

The Qissaa albeit story of mine...

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