Holi with Anil

Meet the Maker: Anil 🇮🇳

 (Anil & Pete in Jaipur in 1999)

 

Ethically made by artisans
family business internationally
artisanal production methods
70 Employees Family Business Artisanal Production

  

Amongst the endless alleyways and streetside stalls of Jaipur, you can find Anil, surrounded by mountains of handmade textiles with a steaming cup of chai in his hand and a twinkle in his eye. This is how Mexicali founder and owner Pete found Anil on his first ever trip to India in 1996, and this is how you would find him today almost three decades later. It is said that “no friendship is an accident” and we could say the same about our business relationship with Anil and his family because with them friendship and business go hand in hand.


(Kim, Anil, Diksha, Carly, & Pete)
 


Multigenerational Family Business

Outgoing, charming, and charismatic, Anil is a dedicated salesperson who could truly sell sand in the desert. Not only were we charmed, but we were taken aback by the beautiful handcrafted block prints meticulously crafted by his team of skilled artisans. Anil started working for his brother in law Gopal in his teens in the early 1980s and has been a part of the business ever since. Gopal can still be found drinking tea amongst piles of intricate patterns and handmade fabrics, but his son Nikhil has since taken the reigns of the business. Anil’s daughter Diksha also worked with the family business, but has since found her niche with her very own small scale woman-owned textile design business, which is a breath of fresh air in a historically male dominated society such as India.

 
(Diksha & Nikhil, the next generation) (Kim & Pete's daughter Carly, with Anil's daughters Ayisha and Diksha)

 

The Infamous Lobster Design

Anil is fast to say yes, and early on in our business with him he would sell us products before he had even made them, and then somehow making it work. The only time in our long history of doing business together that Anil has ever said no to an idea was when we introduced him to our now infamous lobster design. We asked his team to create a lobster block print to celebrate the rich cultural heritage of lobsters in our home state of Maine. After making some test designs, Anil repeatedly told Pete that it was a bad idea, and that the design was very ugly. To Anil and his team the lobster just looked like a big bug, but we promised them that our customers would like it. Anil and his team still don’t understand the appeal, but we sure hope you like it as much as we do!

(Amrita sewing a lobster print shirt) (The first versions of the block print lobster design) (Pete, his son Chauncey, & Anil showing off the lobster shirt)
  

The Ancient Art of Block Printing

Anil, Gopal, and Nikhil are helping to revive and celebrate the ancient art of Indian hand block printing. Their business empowers countless individuals and communities in and around Jaipur. The cotton pickers and the weavers are just the start, the cotton has to be boiled, cleaned, beaten, and dried in the sun. The designs are carved out of blocks of wood and hand stamped using natural dyes, thus empowering the artisans that harvest, carve, design, and stamp the product. The result is truly a colorful work of art, inspired by ancient India and full of perfectly imperfect beauty marks that help illustrate the unique origins of the product.

Learn more about the art of block printing here
.
 
 
 
(Cotton hanging to dry in the sun before being printed) (Wooden blocks used to stamp the designs)
 
 

A Family Affair

Aside from cups of chai tea, we have shared countless meals and memories with Anil and his family. From riding on human powered ferris wheels at Chokhi Dani to Holi festival celebrations, our businesses and families have both grown and grown up together. Anil and Nikhil’s youngest sons are now being groomed to join the family business, and we look forward to what the future holds. Regardless, we are sure it will be a beautiful family business built on friendship and fueled by chai tea.


(Anil with Mexicali owners Kim and Pete)
 


Join Carly & Diksha on a tour of the textile factory to learn more:

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Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry
Provincial Block Print Tapestry

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made with love by Anil and his makers in India

Enhance energy and embrace individuality with the bright and bold bohemian dreamscape patterns of the Provincial Block Print Tapestry. Traditionally used as a block print bedspread to beautify your bedroom, a statement table cloth, or a wall hanging, it amplifies the aesthetic of any space, be it a home, an office, a dorm room, a boat, a treehouse, a cave, or a campervan. Spread one over your bed, drape one over your couch, display one over your table, or keep one in the back of your car to throw down as a beach blanket or to bring to the park for a picnic. Why not all of the above?

Block printing is an ancient art practiced by artisans in Rajasthan, India and each of these handmade tapestries is a true work of art. Minor blemishes are beauty marks that reflect the unique nature of the textiles and celebrate their cultural origins.