Iba Mallai, an entrepreneur hailing from Meghalaya, has woven together tradition, sustainability, and women’s empowerment to create Kiniho, a unique brand specializing in clothing, accessories, and more, all crafted from exquisite Eri silk. Mallai’s journey began with eight years in various corporate roles, but a growing sense of dissatisfaction prompted her to seek a more fulfilling path.
Having grown up in a community known for its weaving and dyeing traditions, Mallai’s deep-rooted love for nature and traditional crafts led her to pursue fashion design after graduating in business management. In 2016, she took a bold step, leaving her corporate job at IBM with an investment of Rs 3 lakh to launch Kiniho—an ethical clothing line.
Kiniho stands as a harmonious blend of heritage and modern aesthetics, each piece narrating tales of age-old traditions, ancestral weaving knowledge, and inspiration from Meghalaya’s natural surroundings. Central to the brand’s ethos is responsible creation, achieved through the use of Eri silk, a sustainable and cruelty-free protein fiber.
In the heart of the Ribhoi district, Kiniho operates an in-house production unit staffed by 18 weavers employing traditional hand-weaving techniques.
Re-reported from the article originally published in The Her Story