About the location: Run by the multiple-award-winning Salvi family, this purpose-built museum is an excellent place to see Patola silk weaving in action. The family has specialised in double-ikat weaving (a process that their ancestors brought from Southeast Asia) since the 11th century. You can observe a demonstration on the loom and compare the family’s craft with beautifully displayed single-ikat textiles from around the world, from Uzbekistan and northern Thailand to Holland.
Brief History: The art of double ikat goes back centuries and is also seen in some of the cave paintings in Ajanta. Legends say that it was in 12 century AD that King Kumarpal of the Solanki dynasty, invited 700 families of patola weavers from Jalna (South Maharashtra) to settle down in Patan in North Gujarat. The Salvi family is one of them. They have continued to preserve this art for the last 35 generations.
By Road Intercity buses from Ahmedabad to Patan take 3.5 hours, and 1 hour from Mehsana. Shared jeeps are slightly quicker, but less comfortable.
By Train The train can take you as far as Mehsana (1 hour). From there you will need to catch a bus to Patan.
By Air The nearest airport from Patan is Ahmedabad, situated at a distance of 125 km. The airport here, in turn is connected to International and Indian cities. Patan has a railway station for easy access.