The beauty of Dilli Grey is in the story, the process and the people as much as the end product, something we are passionate about sharing, transparently through our journal and with our customers in-store.
Every piece you see at Dilli Grey goes through a slow and considered process to get to the final product - some taking up to 18 months to go from design in London by founder, Vickie El-Rayyes to being available to purchase.
Our products are made from carefully sourced, natural fabrics such as organic cotton, lyocell and linen; skillfully designed and made in small runs to ensure zero wastage. We pride ourselves on considering all the angles, from fit to fabric, to those special touches that elevate a piece to something worth treasuring for years to come in your wardrobe or home.
Here you can learn a little bit more about some of the different artisan skills we use to create our Dilli Grey designs and the incredible work that goes into honouring each heritage craft:
Our signature hand-block printing is done by artisans outside Jaipur. The blocks are carved from wood by hand, then printed using gentle eco inks, by eye - no machinery is used. It is a technique that has changed very little over the centuries and takes years to master. The fabric is then dried in the Rajasthani sunshine before being sent to our tailors to create our beautiful boho designs.
HAND SCREEN PRINTING
Our hand-screen printing is done by artisans outside Jaipur. Using a traditional frame method; the 100% organic cotton is printed using gentle eco inks. The fabric is then dried in the Rajasthani sunshine before being sent to our tailors to be turned into our handmade designs.
We have a range of hand-embroidered dresses and tunics that use the centuries' old technique of ‘Chikankari’- a style of embroidery traditional to Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh. Each and every piece is unique, like a snowflake – and created for us by a women’s co-operative based outside the city. The co-operative allows women to stay in their remote villages with their children and families through secure, regular employment, rather than having to travel to larger cities to find work.
We work with trusted antiques dealers who specialise in sourcing vintage textiles on our behalf throughout India. These textiles would otherwise be lost, or not in use but by reimagining them into modern womenswear, such as our kantha jackets, we are able to give them another life and reducing the new raw materials that we are drawing on to create our collections.
Our 100% organic cotton fabric is hand-block printed by a team just outside Jaipur. The wooden block design is carved by hand, taking up to a month to complete, then the colour is added using gentle eco dyes and printed by hand, often layering up to 4 colours to one design. The printing house employs unskilled young men, provides them with accommodation and training to become skilled craftsmen in this heritage Rajasthani textile design. They are then lovingly filled with natural organic cotton filler and hand quilted by a co-operative of ladies outside Jaipur. A labour of love that we hope shines through in these very special, heirloom block-print quilts.
We work directly with an artisan weaver in Srinagar, within the Kashmir Valley where cashmere production began in the 13th century. A family run business since 1965, yarn from the rare Changthangi breed of cashmere goat (which makes up less than 0.1% of the world's global cashmere production) is hand-loomed using a traditional technique on a small, sustainable scale rather than mass-machine knitted.