Almora Craft Design Studio LLP
Peoli is an apparel brand built on the principles of sustainable living through sourcing
organic raw materials, honoring indigenous skills, and creating livelihood opportunities at the grassroots level in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. We operate at the intersection of being aesthetically unique, environmentally responsible, and generating livelihood. The combination of design and purpose makes Peoli stand out from competitors and has won them an Award for Excellence in Handicrafts by the World Crafts Council in 2018. While the handicrafts are distributed on a greater scale, the artisans are primarily local women who are native to the region. In the absence of this particular venture, many of these women would be unemployed or engaged in temporary jobs, but the opportunity to become a trained artisan with Peoli has allowed these women to attain a steady source of income.
Through our work, we strongly propose a locally fuelled model of sustainable development. We use indigenous raw materials like Harsil wool, Tibetan wool, nettle, hemp and dyestuffs procured from local farming communities to craft winter and summer apparel. Ethically sourced natural materials like Eri silk, organic Kala cotton, Nagaland hill cotton and Merino wool imported from New Zealand are combined with indigenous materials to enhance their comfort and aesthetic appeal. A similar synthesis is applied in crafting the products where local craft skills like handloom weaving and knitting are ingeniously merged with hand embroidery, beadwork, shibori, etc.
It is our constant effort to develop products, which are easy to interpret and process by the makers, and in return let them earn a sustainable livelihood, infusing a sense of pride and confidence through the humble craft they produce. The employment opportunities that we are able to provide using the local skill vocabulary also respond to the macro issue of population migration due to which the hill villages in many areas of Uttarakhand are deserted.