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“Too controlling”

Calico Museum of Textiles
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Private Ahmedabad Tour: Calico Musuem and Gandhi Ashram
Ranked #21 of 125 things to do in Ahmedabad
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Nagpur, India
Level Contributor
27 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Too controlling”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 27, 2013

It was too controlling for a free citizen.the glorious history of textiles can be found elsewhere too in a very open atmosphere.right from the start to the end we were controlled by our guide who i am truly sorry to say did not know much about it.

Visited February 2013
Thank saddy1956
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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255 reviews from our community

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Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
64 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“A must if you are a textiles fan!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 25, 2013

If you enjoy textiles then do not miss Calico Museum BUT do be sure to book in advance! Details at www.calicomuseum.com

Visited February 2013
Thank kbkk57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
77 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Great history of textile industry across India!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 3, 2013

It is hard to believe; that this museum is completely free. Excellent textile collection from past centuries. Unbelievable, setup. Very high standards for considering this is a museum in India. It is supported by Sarabhai Foundation.The guides are very knowledgeable. Note they only take a limited no of people for each session. So reservation is needed. Worthwhile for museum goers! I went with a British volunteer who was spending some time in Ahmedabad. He really enjoyed it.

Visited November 2012
1 Thank Arvind A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Delhi, India
Level Contributor
28 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 154 helpful votes
“Here is the reason why there are so many mixed reviews for this amazing museum”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2012

Unlike many museums where you can walk in the moment you arrive, here one needs prior appointment as entry is restricted to just a few visitors per day. There is a reason for that. The exhalation and perspiration of visitors causes moisture levels to rise which has a threshold level beyond which the condition of museum artifacts (mainly the antique textiles) will deteriorate.

You can call them in advance on +91 079 22865995 or +91 9979738650 and book your place for the day you want to visit it. It is free of cost. You can also contact them on-
email info@calicomuseum.com
website www.calicomuseum.com

The viewing is divided into two guided tours. One from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. They take in only 20 visitors per day for this tour. You have to be at the gate by 10:15 am to enter (do not take this lightly as Gujarat is very punctual). It covers the textiles and costumes of India (17th century onward). Textiles used in trade with foreigners (15th century onward). Regional embroideries, weaving, dyeing and block printing techniques. All at an arms length which you can touch and feel.

The second tour is from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Be there by 2:45 pm. If not, your place might be given to last minute visitors as only 16 visitors are allowed in. This one covers the paintings, bronzes, manuscripts, woodwork, ceremonial artifacts, ritual arts etc.

Children below 10 years of age are not allowed.

You cannot take a camera inside. It is advisable to carry a small diary and a pen to scribble anything that you really like and would want your friends to definitely see when they visit. For example the article no. 109 is something I have not been able to forget. It is a saree from Orissa in Gold & red silk which has 'Barakhadi' (the oriya vowels) wowen on its drape. Exquisite work.

The souvenir shop has some unique offerings. Textile prints and books were my favourite. 'The journal of India Textiles' is a complete set of 7 journals with a monograph on printing on cotton at Ahmedabad. Apps. Rs. 2000/-

A set of 4 detailed brochures is a working guide and has photographs and techniques of all the Indian Embroideries you see in the museum (you might be tempted to write it all down during the tour but it is available as a single/collection in the shop). Appx. Rs. 500/- per brochure.

A coffee table book of 'Indian Costumes' from 18th to mid 20th century is quite detailed. It also has a section in the end with technical and explanatory notes with complete pattern cuts to show how to replicate these designs with tailoring today. Appx. Rs 4500/-

I pride myself at being able to differentiate machine embroidery and hand embroidery but this museum crushed my pride to bare threads. They were so fine that if they weren't so old, I would have brushed them aside as machine work. Our ancestors were quite hard working.

It is a dark quiet museum in a haveli (private mansion) with a cowdung+straw+clay flooring but don't let that dampen your spirits. The objects have been preserved painstakingly by the Sarabhais. It is definitely worth a visit when In Ahmedabad.

Bathroom facility is neat and clean.

Note: You are generally not allowed to leave the tour midway so do plan your day accordingly. You can choose to drop out of either tour 1 or tour 2 completely but it is not advisable to drop out once the tour has begun as it is a maze and you will need to be escorted out.

We had Kamalini Ben (Ben is gujarati for sister) as our guide. She was very good and knowledgeable. You need to ask questions to know more than they generally divulge.

Visited August 2012
14 Thank Vandana N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
64 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“paintings are great”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 28, 2012

Pichwai paintings of 19th century are so good in their natural splendour. Do not miss the rasaleela. it is almost captured as a 3D movie.what expressions? Great time.

Visited December 2012
2 Thank C P C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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