The story of Bhujodi is as legendary as that of the mythical bird phoenix. The Kutch village and its weavers prospered for a good 500 years before losing it all, in the most earthshattering way literally and bounced back .
The weavers of the 500-year-old village that lies barely eight km from Bhuj were visionary, even created the first-ever weavers’ cooperative of Kutch in particular and Gujarat, as early as 1954. They were known for their trademark ‘Bhujodi shawl’ in metros across India and over the world , even received national and state awards for their craft.
And then, on January 26, 2001, the Gujarat earthquake shattered the village, destroying their worksheds and even the cooperative which, as an institution, could not sustain itself. “The weavers lost their livelihoods and began seeking employment from neighbouring factories and industries.
A handful of weavers from Bhujodi took it upon themselves to revive the cooperative society which sprung back to life in 2016 and they have been unstoppable ever since !
The Vankars of Bhujodi are primarily involved in cloth weaving. Originally the Vankars used to weave shawls and other communities like Ahirs were involved in the cultivation and grew organic cotton (Kala cotton), which was used to produce cloth. Bhujodi sarees are more recent interpretations in similar styles as the shawls. The saree takes a minimum of 3 to 5 days for weaving. Kala Cotton is indigenous cotton from Kutch. It grows in rainfall only and does not need any pesticides, or fertilizers, therefore, are classified as organic cotton khadi/handspun/handwoven.