In 2003, Indigo Handloom was launched with a mission to help change the fashion world; the second biggest polluter after the oil industry. Indigo Handloom works with over 500 weavers in rural India to produce beautiful, handwoven textiles without electricity or polluting emissions. Founder Smita Paul discovered the world of handloom while on assignment in India as a freelance journalist. Despite a surging Indian economy, weavers, farmers and other members of the rural poor are faced with worsening economic conditions. Government sponsored subsidies for handloom associations, which helped supply raw materials, micro-loans, marketing and design assistance, have virtually disappeared, leaving many artisans without the guidance and financial support they need to pass their talents to the next generation. Indigo Handloom partners with many design groups to bring employment to handloom weavers and help continue this ancient, sustainable tradition.