A holistic science
AyurAyuh (meaning life or lifespan) and veda (meaning knowledge and understanding) is the centuries-old practice of holistic healing developed in the Indian subcontinent some 6,000 years ago.
It is believed the ancient sages of India observed and reflected upon nature and how elements within our Earth’s natural environment contributed to a long, happy, healthy life. Now Ayurveda transcends continents, giving health, healing, knowledge and a life of wellness to millions of people all over the world.
Root of creation
Kerala, in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, is the world’s epicentre of Ayurvedic treatment. The fertile soil and temperate climate there create ideal growing conditions for the medicinal plants and herbs used in the science of Ayurveda, and it’s there that our Isla collection of ayurvedic towels was created.
Using the same principles, carefully selected organic medicinal ingredients were handpicked from nature and combined to treat yarn made from organically grown cotton. The yarn was then hand-dyed – a labour-intensive process – in various combinations of ayurvedic herbs and plants chosen both for their vibrant colour and powerful healing properties. The dyed yarn was treated with an organic mordant combining such ingredients as aloe vera, coconut oil and neem to fix the colour, and then it was hand-loomed by an expert weaver on a loom constructed especially for our Isla towels.
Learning from experience
During a visit to the Kerala farm where the dyeing takes place, I had the opportunity to witness how the natural organic colours and mordants are made, and to experience the dyeing process first-hand. During the day-long workshop, I learnt about the health and healing properties of various herbs, plants and barks, and also visited the home of the weaver who brought our design to life. We drank tea and enjoyed his wife’s delicious onion pakoras, while the village children peeked in, fascinated by strange visitors to this remote outpost in Erode.
Kind to people and planet
The result of that visit is our Isla Collection of beach, home and yoga towels infused with the wellness properties of plants and herbs, such as anti-inflammatory turmeric, antioxidant tamarind, anti-microbial black cumin, skin-calming neem, soothing tulsi and stomach-settling annatto. The range is completely free of synthetic chemicals and toxic irritants, it’s kind to even the most sensitive skin, as well as the planet, and wraps up small in its own organic cotton pouch, so you can take it with you wherever you travel.