How We Work

Silk Emporium
Since its discovery in 2500 B.C., silk had an adventurous course of evolution. At the end of the journey traversing through the intricate ‘Silk Route’ for the past 4000 years, silk stands proudly today keeping high the flag of naturalism and proclaiming herself to be the ‘queen’ of textiles. Silk, the glorious gift of nature is an inimitable natural fiber synonymous with splendors, sibilant with luster and spectacular in vision. An obsession to the fashion conscious man of today as he is slowly returning back to nature and started shows his increased preference to eco-friendly natural fiber like silk. The district of Bhagalpur has been famous for its cottage industry since long. Tussar Silk, dyeing, salt, indigo, glassware, etc. were some of the chief industries of the district.
Silk being natural fiber breaths and conducts moisture away from the body. Its isothermal properties make it cool in summer and warm in winter. Silk floss is the lightest and warmest wadding for quilted insulation. It is even resilient and quickly recovers is original state after being deformed. Silk is an excellent dye absorbent and this makes it possible to make infinite shades, designs and finishes. There is no time in the history of silk when it was not sought valued, a symbol of the best, the most royal, the most holy, and honoured gift. Silk has been a form of currency once, worth its weight is gold.

Types of Silk
There are about 5 main types of silk found in India and they are as follows-
   (a) Tasar
   (b) Muga
   (c) Eri
   (d) Matka

Tussar Silk
Tussar silk is mainly found in the states of Jharkhand, Chattisgarh and Orissa besides Maharashtra, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh. Tussar is copperish in colour and this silk is mainly used for furnishing and interiors. Tussar silk is less shiny than mulberry silk, but Tussar silk has it own feel and appeal. India is producing two kinds of Tussar silk. They are (i) Oak Tussar or Temperate Tussar (Chinese variety) and (ii) Indian tradition Tussar or Tropical Tussar . Oak Tussar is mainly found in the sub – Himalayan belt of India covering the states of Manipur, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Mehgalaya and Jammu and Kashmir. The production of Oak Tussar silk on commercial scale is yet to come in India.
It may be mentioned here that Tussar silk production in Bhagalpur stands as one of the top dollar earners of Tussar silk in India. At present, the state of Bihar of which Bhagalpur is the principal seat produces the largest quantity of Tussar silk in India. About 36000 persons mainly members of the scheduled tribes rear Tussar silk worms. About 80,000 “Kahans” (1 Kahan = 1280 cocoons) of Tussar, cocoons are produced in the state which give 1,60,000 lbs. of reeled yarns and 1,20,000 lbs. of Tussar waste.

Muga Silk
The Muga silk is golden yellow in colour. Muga silk is generally found in Assam so it is called as pride of Assam. Muga silk is generally used in making products of Sarees and Chaddars. The name of the silkworm from where we get muga silk is “ Antheraea assamensis “and the plants on which they feed are Som and soalu.

Eri Silk
Eri silk is mostly found in the north eastern states and Assam. It is also found in the states of Bihar, Bengal and Orissa. Eri silk is mainly used for making chhadars. The first attempt to rear Eri warms in Bihar was made in 1907 at Pusa by the Agricultural Research Institute. This was later on transferred to Govt. Silk Institute of Bhagalpur who have completed the rearing of eri warms. Eri is obtained from warms which are fed on castor Leaves. Although, Bihar is the second largest Eri raising state in India and Bhagalpur occupies a very important position in the manufacture of Eri silk.

Matka is generally found in the states of Bengal, Orissa and Karnataka. This fabric is formed mostly in natural colour and can be used for home furnishing made ups.
The annual production of Tussar silk is reported to be 200 mt. tonnes. The 50% of Tussar silk is used is converted into saree and dress material and remaining 50% of Tussar silk is exported by the exporter.

Type of fibres and yarns used
The weavers of Bhagalpur have gained expertise in manufacturing varied designed, quality products in the region. The yarns are dyed in different colours and all the colours/ pigments used are reported to be colour fast. All the products from this region are marketable both in domestic and export markets. The cluster is reported to be producing textile items worth approximately. Rupees four hundred crores (Rupees two hundred crores meant for consumption in domestic market and balance for exports. As per the available records, 4675 handlooms and 2292 Powerlooms are producing textile products from the cluster. A total of 2000 handlooms and 600 Powerlooms are reported to be non operational. The handloom weaver comprises of 17063 and 13000 Powerloom weavers are engaged in the textile production activities in the cluster.
The total textile varieties produced in the cluster includes 20% of saree varieties, 60% of fabrics (for payajama and kurta, furnishing material and another diversified products), 20% fabrics for scarf/ stole/ ladies dress materials. 80% of handlooms are reported to be producing silk fabrics and 20% are found to be producing cotton and viscose fabrics. The 20% of Powerloom are found to be producing silk varieties and 80% for cotton and viscose varieties. Some of the important products manufactured in Bhagalpur cluster are Traditional Items silk fabrics, silk dress material. saree, salwar Suits, kurta- payajama cloths, scarves, shawls and bed sheets diversified products cushion covers, curtains, throws, table covers, napkins, runners.

History and origin of the craft
In the 16th Century, the process of manufacturing Tussar silk product started in the region of Bhagalpur. The knowledge of manufacturing in the period became a way of life of the inhabitants of the region. This knowledge of craftsmanship got passed on from one generation to the other in the region. Since past several decades, Bhagalpur is globally renowned as the manufacturing centre of various qualities of silk fabrics. In International market, it is specially recognized for the production of silk furnishing, (both heavy & light textures). Tussar spun out of different stages/wastes like Jhuri, Danti, Katiya, Balkal, etc. are all regional names are used for manufacturing silk fabrics. Similarly, the qualities of Mulberry silk yarn are of varied range are also used.
Besides other varieties like dress material, upholstery, scarf, stoles etc. (using from heavy coarse Jhari Tussar, Hand Spun Jattam to finest filament yarn)are being produced . The spinning and weaving of such wider range of yarn requires special skill, but local weavers of Bhagalpur and Banka district of Bihar state has attained the capabilities to perform easily. The household country process of spinning for different varieties Tussar yarn and its weaving is routine activity for local weavers, as such most of the varieties of Tussar yarn, have been displayed in this folder under separate group.
The poor but skilled Handloom weavers in this region are fully familiar with handling these wide varieties of silk yarns. The texture of yarn may be very coarse like Jute sacking or may be the most fine and delicate, does not cause any hesitation to local weavers for reeling, spinning and weaving. Besides above, Bhagalpur weavers are also acquainted with the use of other Textiles viz. cotton (fine to coarse), Jute, Linen (Flax), Viscose, Wool, Cashmilion (Acrylic), Polyester etc. in combination with/without silk. Perhaps this is the specialty of Bhagalpur weavers, which may not be in other handloom areas of India or even in Asia according to some experienced exporters.

Traditional Items
In case of silk sarees there is a growing demand in the domestic market for silk sarees. The sarees are produced with 2 – 3” border on both side of the saree . A silk saree takes approximately 7 days for manufacturing. With the branding and value addition on the Bhagalpur silk sarees we are hopeful that the market share of Bhaglpur silk sarees can go up drastically.
Normal Indian sizes of sarees is 6.5 meters in length.
Quality of Sarees
It varies depending on the usage of the yarn. Usually the gram age of the fabric varies from 70 gsm to 250 gsm. Depending on the gsm the weight of the sarees also varies. Accordingly, the price of the sarees also grows up with the overall weight of the sarees.
In India very few branded sarees are sold similar to that of jacquard design of Nalli brand quality. Other silk sarees from Kanchipuram are being sold mainly with border dyed or zaried along the borders. Some of them could be with Dobby design.

Silk Suits
In case of silk suits there is a large market for entire salwar suits throughout the country. Out of the total market 20 % of the higher income segment consumers will go for silk suits. Hence relatively there is a large potential domestic market.
Quality of silk suits
The quality of the silk suits depends on the count of the yarn and gram age of the silk fabric. The suits can be made with ranging from 60 gsm to 120 gsm fabrics the variation of the weight the prices will also go up.
Design of silk suit
There are several types of silk fabrics. Usually in India, the Jacquard and Dobby weaving is commonly weaved in the fabric itself. One can create various designs by printing over the fabric. Some of the popular printing methods are screen printing, block printing, Mud printing and offset printing. Various other designs can also be produce by embroidery work with computerized embroidery, sewing machine embroidery and hand embroidery. In Bhagalpur cluster in our CFC we are proposing embroidery design center consisting of sewing machines and hand embroidery facilities.
The suit length varies from 5 to 5 and half meter in India. And when they are made as readymade garments the normal sizes of small, medium, large and extra large have standard dimensions. usually blow 13 inch chest size are called small size, between 30 t0 34 chest size are called medium and than 34-40 in chest size are called large. about 40 inch size chest they are called extra large.