Pabiben’s is the story of a traditional artisan's ability to adapt to change, through continual innovation.
Until 1995, Dhebaria Rabari women embroidered exclusively for themselves and their families. However, twenty years ago the elders of this nomadic tribe banned women from embroidering, as the time-consuming work on their wedding trousseau led to delayed marriages. Undeterred, the women turned to machine appliqué with trims and ribbons, towards a new aesthetic, which referenced the past. This new art is called ‘Hari Jari.’
Pabiben created her first prototype - the 'Pabi-Bag' - at a design programme in Kutch, (Kala Raksha Vidyalaya), aimed at reaching new markets by empowering artisans with ownership of the design process, and the bag became an instant hit. Each appliquéd bag is edged and lined with local block-printed natural-dyed cotton. The lining proudly bears her signature in Gujarati and English, a sign of authentic work made by Pabiben.com.
Today, Pabiben is the first woman craft-entrepreneur of Gujarat state, India. ARTISANS' is proud to represent her. In showcasing Pabiben's vibrant array of products, we celebrate a role model for future generations of women artisans.