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Friday, July 11, 2008

Indian Art and Craft : Kanjeevarm, Gharchola, Katwa, Sujini and Kantha Sarees - 20

From the south comes the Temple Sari, the Kanjeevaram, from the town of Kanchipuram. The Kanjeevaram sari was first woven around 400 years ago and since then this vibrantly coloured saree has become one of India's most popular materials. It is woven mainly in contrasting colours with silk or gold threads uses as borders or motifs. The colours are normally bright deep colours, and the silk is among the finest in India.

Gharchola sarees carry tied and dyed patterns. These sarees are traditionally bought for weddings and they carry a gold thread for the checks with small golden motifs like a peacock or a lotus in the centre. The final red colour of the Gharchola saree is traditionally dyed in Jamnagar because of the special quality of the water there. Rajkot in Saurashtra is another important centre of the sarees.

Katwa and Sujini and Kantha are embroideries that use a running stitch and some satin stitch to turn out a magical array of exquisite quilts, duvets and running yardage. Embroidered textiles from the desert dunes of Rajasthan and Gujarat, shimmer with colour in a bid to make up for the bleak landscape. Mirrors glint,s et in satiny colour-filled embroideries that adorn houses as talismans as well as blouses, huge rich tapestries and lehengas (skirts). Each handcrafted piece is unique and amazingly well thought out. Chikan, embroidery from Lucknow that looks like lace, has recently been revived and looks beautiful on pastel coloured sarees in summer.

India's great tradition of vegetable dyeing is unequalled anywhere in the world. However, the European development of synthetic dyes in the mid 19th century ended the export market for colourful textiles as well as the natural dyes. The technical skills of vegetable dyeing were lost to all but a minority of textile craftsmen. However, today there is renewed interest in natural dyeing due to bans being imposed by Governments, because of health risks from numerous synthetic dyes developed.

Related Links:

01. Indian Art and Craft : The Living Age - 1
02. Indian Art and Craft : The painting history of India - 2
03. Indian Art and Craft : India the home of Painting - 3
04. Indian Art and Craft : Ajanta Paintings - 4
05. Indian Art and Craft : Floor Designs and Madhubani Paintings - 5
06. Indian Art and Craft : Art of body painting - 6
07. Indian Art and Craft : Shekhavati - India's Open Air Art Gallery - 7
08. Indian Art and Craft : Contemporary Painting - 8
09. Indian Art and Craft : Crafts Traditions- 9
10. Indian Art and Craft : Metal Work - 10
11. Indian Art and Craft : Metal Work and Engraving - 11
12. Indian Art and Craft : Sculpture - The Essence of Art - 12
13. Indian Art and Craft : Jewellery Styles - Meenakshi and Kunda - 13
14. Indian Art and Craft : Nagaland, Assam, TamilNadu Jewellery - 14
15. Indian Art and Craft : Carpets and Textiles of India (Indian History of Carpets) - 15
16. Indian Art and Craft : Carpets from Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan - 16
17. Indian Art & Craft : Sarees and Fabrics - 17
18. Indian Art & Craft : Sarees and Fabrics from various states - 18
19. Indian Art & Craft : Sarees from other states - 19
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