Emma sports an Indian handiwork here Image: Facebook
You'd think Disney would use some Karl Lagerfield magic or some vintage Oscar de la Renta number to dress Emma Watson's Belle in its newest live action flick Beauty and the Beast. But Hollywood is apparently really getting into the desi embroidery game and actually got some artisans from Bhuj, Gujarat, to design the elaborate bodices and the long capes Belle was seen wearing in the movie.
Belle's bodice from @Beautyandthebeast was beautifully hand embroidered by artisan brothers Kasam and Juma in Bhuj, Western India. They used a technique called "Aari work" which is a very fine chain stitch traditional to the Kutch area of Gujarat. This style lent itself very nicely to this eighteenth century French floral design. Costume designed by Jacqueline Durran, photo credit: Simon Marks @dyptsimonmarks #beautyandthebeast #costume #whomademyclothes #disney #artisan #bhuj
Kasam and Juma, from Bhuj, designed the floral embroidered bodice Emma wore in the library scene of the movie. "They used a technique called Aari work, which is a very fine chain stitch traditional to the Kutch area of Gujarat. This style lent itself very nicely to this eighteenth century French floral design," says Sinead O'Sullivan, the head costume designer for Beauty and the Beast. Sinead also shared a picture of the Gujarati designer duo on her Instagram page.
@beautyandthebeast is out today! I was an assistant designer to Jacqueline Durran on the job, which had a costume team of almost 100 people. As a team, we tried to source ethical, fair-trade and sustainable fabrics wherever possible. For Belle's "red cape look" in particular we decided to challenge ourselves to see how difficult it would be to create a costume that was head to toe fair-trade, organic and sustainable, but which didn’t compromise Jacqueline's design. We contacted Eco Age, who provided us with a set of criteria which we could adhere to. All of the production was done in our in-house workshops, and the whole costume team got involved in the challenge. This specific costume required 12 different fabrics to make her cape, jacket, blouse, bodice, skirts and bloomers, with trims and ties, and we ensured that each element was certified organic and fair-trade. Our dyeing team took on the challenge of using natural and low impact dyes, and printing with traditional wood blocks, which the set carpenters helped make in the construction department, from redundant bits of the set. Some of the fabrics and trims used were vintage, including the cape which was made from hand-woven Scottish Jacob’s wool, that was then over-dyed using madder. The fabric for the jacket was made using a hand-woven linen found on E-bay, which was actually a lady in manchester’s school project from the 1960’s. The rest of the fabrics were sourced from fairtrade co-operatives in India and Nepal. #whomademyclothes #whomademycostume #ethicalcostume #ootd #jacquelinedurran #fairtrade #behindthescenes #beautyandthebeast #artisan #organic #naturaldyes #vintage #disney #sustainable @beautyandthebeast
"As a team, we tried to source ethical, fair-trade and sustainable fabrics wherever possible. For Belle's "red cape look" in particular, we decided to challenge ourselves," says Sinead. "The rest of the fabrics were sourced from fairtrade co-operatives in India and Nepal," added the designer, who has done some extensive research to produce the costumes with eco-freindly and fair-trade materials. We expect nothing less from an Emma Watson movie, honestly.
#tbt to this time last year when I visited an organic cotton co-operative outside Ahmedabad in India. This pic was taken with Shailini Sheth Amin of Moral Fibre Fabrics, and hand weaver Jasu Benn. This co-operative alone generates work for over 2,000 cotton farmers, spinners, weavers and dyers. Everyone here is self employed and profits are de-centralized and shared out. Companies such as Moral Fibre Fabrics purchase their fabrics here - they specialize in Fair-trade, organic, handwoven cotton, azo free dyed fabrics, and almost carbon neutral fabrics. (www.moralfibre-fabrics.com). We've used their fabric on numerous films so it was great to see all the stages of production #fairtrade #ethicalfabrics #artisans #whomademyclothes #whomademycostume
Sinead also spent some time following the work of Indian spinners and weavers in Ahmedabad. "Everyone here is self-employed and profits are de-centralised and shared out. We've used their fabric on numerous films so it was great to see all the stages of production," added Sinead.
So, if you're catching Beauty and the Beast this week, pay close attention to Belle's clothes for the desi handiwork.