Handwoven Bangalore Silk Saree with Hand Embroidery 02 - Nakshi Kantha
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This Tussar Silk saree is from the the University Town of Shantiniketan. The hand woven silk saree is adorned with the famed Kantha Stitch technique of embroidery. You can read the story of the Kantha technique in below.
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This Bangalore Silk saree is from the the University Town of Shantiniketan. The hand woven silk saree is adorned with the famed Kantha Stitch technique of embroidery. You can read the story of the Kantha technique in below.
Fabric: Pure Bangalore Silk
Dimensions: Standard Saree Dimensions
Pattern: Body: Assorted Geometrical Shapes; Pallav: Flowers and paisely
Color: Chocolate Brown
Washcare: Dry clean recommended for this product. Do not bleach and do not expose this product to excessive heat and sunlight.
Imperfections and variations in the product cannot be termed as defects, as these are intrinsic to the handmade process
Colors in the picture might vary slightly due to lighting in the studio
Ships within 10 days
Kantha – A stich in time transforms tatters into works of art
The story of Kantha embroidery is one of rags to riches, literally. Kantha is a technique native to Bengal (on both sides of the Sundarbans). Kontha in Sanskrit means rags and that’s all there is to it. It originated when wads of old rags from sarees and dhotis were stitched together to be reclaimed and repurposed as quilts. Bengali grannies are obsessed with two things – how to save waste and how to keep the progeny warm – the answer was Kantha.
One fine day, a group of old women cut their old saris to size (didn’t spare the dhotis of their menfolk either) and placed one length of cloth above the other. They smoothened the pieces with their hands to make sure there were no wrinkles or folds. They removed the thread from the cut pieces at the edge, and started sewing the old cut fabrics together using small running stitches. They placed stones on the four corners of the cloth, or tacked them down around the edge. The stitches were worked in parallel lines to fasten the material together. Since the raw material for these quilts was old and washed over and over again, the end product was soft on the skin yet strong; and multiple layers kept the cold at bay. This proved to be a hit with new born babies.
The unique double-sided construction and ripple effect of the kantha stitch hand embroidery is probably the most obvious sign of authenticity. Some kanthas are very textured whereas others simply have the running stitch covering the whole surface of the quilt without much tactile quality. Over time the women experimented with coloured thread and instead of straight lines, they used myriad patterns. And from quilts they graduated to other home furnishings and apparel. Today all kinds of stuff are embroidered using this ageless technique – sarees, dress materials, cushion covers, bed linen, purses you name it. Also the material used has gone from cheap cotton to expensive Tussar Silk (rags to riches!!) with beautiful motifs done in vibrant colors.
Pieces of cloth stitched together meant family unity. It is a collective occupation and helps in social participation, as the women tell each other stories as they go along stitching. The embroidery was initially done free hand, interpreting motifs as they saw and imagined. With time the motifs have changed from traditional to religious to modern. However like all good things Kantha almost came to an end. It was revived in the 1940s by Kala Bhavan School of Fine Arts at the Vishva Bharati University, Santiniketan.
|Origin State||West Bengal|
|Geographical Indication (GI)||Not Tagged|
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