It was during her visit to a weaving community on a career break, Anjali got the idea for Impresa. She tells the story herself. “After learning from the weavers about the challenges they had in maintaining their looms, I created the Impresa Facebook page to sell their supplies. I realised I was capable of being an entrepreneur as it expanded. It is now more than just business. By helping the underserved, I hope to bring about a society that is independent.”
Anjali has a Master’s degree from BITS Pilani and worked with Wipro, before choosing to launch her own enterprise. For Anjali, the suffering of artisan communities and weavers was too personal. She spent a lot of her childhood surrounded by looms in her village, but it hurt her to witness the handloom traditions slowly fading.
So how did Impresa leave its mark? According to Anjali, “We hire weaving communities around India that experienced financial difficulties to weave unique clothing for display, and sale under the brand Impresa through the venture’s Facebook page. We use social media to raise awareness of the importance of supporting India’s weavers.”
Impresa, which began as a Facebook page in 2012, has evolved into a physical store and a thriving e-commerce site that sells ethnic wear for men, women, and children, including Balaramapuram handloom mundu, sarees, and kurtas made by weavers from various parts of the country, as well as ikat, block-printed, and cotton fabrics. It is one of the unique platforms that sources handlooms directly from the weavers, thereby providing the artisans with a great market and a quality income.
Every handloom has a unique tale to tell, one that features various yarns, materials, civilizations, and weaving techniques. The handloom garments worn by the people will also describe a land’s history. Thus, the variety of handloom clothing at Impresa tells many stories of various stripes, civilizations, and weavings. Anjali Chandran, who enjoyed culture and travel, began using handwoven clothing to tell the tale of different lands, and Impresa was born as a result.
Through this initiative, hundreds of weavers are currently able to make a living. Impresa also carries distinctive handicrafts from villages in the country, in addition to handlooms. The mission of Impresa is to recognise and promote the nation’s diverse culture and distinctive traditions.