Kiniho has Ryndia (Eri Silk) at the centre of each creation. The silk is produced from start to finish in Ri-Bhoi district, one of the main regions in Meghalaya where Eri culture and handloom weaving has a long tradition and is part of the cultural fabric of the community of Umden village, where women have been practicing the craft over generations, mostly for personal use and a small niche market.

This collection handpicked for ‘Meghalaya Age – The Store’ includes shawls, scarves, neckties, accessories and a select range of ready to wear garments. The texture of the fabric which feels like a gentle caress on the skin, reflects the humane process in which the silk is extracted without harming the worms, the dyeing process which is entirely organic and the slow and precise weaving by hand on the floor loom. They are entirelycreated only by women, including the modern design interventions by the designer.

Iba Mallai was born and grew up in the heart of Umden Village, watching the women in her family and community rear worms and weave silk since childhood. She ventured into the city in her late teens and later outside the state for further studies. After completing her business studies and a stint in the corporate sector, she realized her calling was elsewhere. She then decided to study fashion design andwent on to start her own brand.While experimenting with a line fashioned from south Indian silk, a realization dawned on her that the silk she knew best was the one she grew up with since childhood. ‘Kiniho’ meaning ‘this is it obviously’ in Bhoi language was thus born in 2017.

Iba’s inspiration is steeped in tradition and nature as she continues to work with her family and community of weavers to sustain the craft, while introducing new colours and patterns that are close to the ethos of the fabric and brand. Strength, beauty and natural seasonal cycles of the flora that surrounds her childhood home are what she imbibes in all her creations.

A Kiniho product is both a style statement and a reminder that the old and new can co-exist harmoniously in exquisite beauty.