From Left: Tabish, Tauseef, Atif and Rafey Ansari from Zoha strive to bring livelihood to the underprivileged, connect rural artisans to the international market, and ensure everything is handmade
Zoha: EDIDA 2015 Flooring winner
With every new collection, a new dimension is revealed and also the passion behind the craft as Tabish Ahsan Ansari of Zoha reveals the brand’s journey. “Zoha was founded in 2006 by Tauseef Ahsan Ansari as a separate division, within the parent company M Y S [Mohammad Yaqub & Sons] Group weaving life since 1978. In 2009, Atif joined the business followed by me in 2012. It is a family run business, wherein my father and grandfather have been artisans themselves."
Innovative and ethical, Zoha’s EDIDA winning Nova collection pushed the frontiers of rug making. “The range captures the craft and colours of centuries old handloom weaving tradition in modern designs and materials. The creations were crafted in collaboration with unemployed Banarasi sari weavers, who revisited Moghul patterns for the carpets,” says Tabish.
Speaking on the conceptualisation to execution process, he avers, “As a part of our social responsibility, we commission artisans from across cities and villages. For the Nova line, we joined forces with craftsmen from Badoi, a small village 45 kms away from Varanasi. Learning that demand for Banarasi saris is diminishing, this collaboration was a natural choice for us. The material used for the carpets was a new kind of luscious textural viscose, which very unique. The artisans used sari techniques to create the carpets in varied patterns and colours.”
The creative revealed that winning an EDIDA for the third time is a moment of honour and pride for the whole team, which helps them to work harder and spread the message that products should be created with a holistic approach that serve everyone involved.