A pen like needle which resembles the shape of a crochet needle, gives rise to an intrinsic form of artwork called the ‘Aari work’. In this artwork beads and ‘muthia’, a sharp edged needle is put to work, which creatively gives rise to chain stitch kind of imprints. This work is popular for its delicate and finest thread work which enhances the essence of hand embroidery.
Appliqué is a type of embroidery that employs a smaller patch or fabric to be applied or sewed onto a larger fabric or surface. It is mostly one piece of fabric in its entirety. Appliqué derives its roots from French culture and it means ‘something applied’ or a thing that has been applied.
Bandhej, also known as Bandhani, is a tie and dye method practiced mainly in states of Rajasthan, Gujarat and parts of Uttar Pradesh. The word Bandhani is derived from a Sanskrit word Banda which means “to tie”. Bandhani is truly an art that involves dyeing a fabric tied tightly with a thread at several points, producing a variety of patterns.
The art of attaching beads to one another by stringing them with a sewing needle or beading needle and thread or thin wire or sewing them to cloth. Beadwork technique is divided into the loom and off-loom weaving, stringing, bead embroidery, bead crochet, and bead knitting. Beads have also been used for religious purposes, as good luck talismans, and as curative agents. Pearls, beads, crystals, hand-woven designs, colored stones, and shiny threads are some of the popular ways of doing embroidery on a piece of cloth.
Murri and Phanda are types of stitches that are used to create Chikan embroidery (or Chikankari work. This type of embroidery traditionally originates from Lucknow. In western terms, these stitches are also known as French knots and are used to fill in the centre of flowers when they are used as patterns in embroidery. The two names refer to the style of the stitches that are used.
Cutdana work refers to using stones that have been cut at specific angles in order to facilitate the reflection of light. These stones are sewn into the fabric with thin threads to create different kinds of patterns and designs. Cutdana work, due to the intricate detailing that goes into creating the outfit, is usually worn for more formal occasions as the work is considered to be rich and heavy.
Threading itself into the world of name and recognition, Dori work known for its unique essence is referred to as one of the spectacular kind of Indian embroidered artwork which implemented through a strong and powerful cord or thread. Zardosi stitches and couching stitch-works are taken under the wings of Dori work, accompanied with multi-colored and finest quality of threads.
Dabka or Dubka
Dabka (also known as Dapka, Dubka) means ‘spring type of thread or a coiled thin wire’ which is sewed in to create intricate patterns. The wired threads are embroidered on the fabric in such a way that the needle passes through the middle of the design. In other words, Dabka work is intricate embroidery or needle and thread work from the lands of Rajasthan.
Ek Taar is a form of embroidery done on both men and women’s garments. As the name ‘Ek taar’ translates to ‘one wire’, it is the Hindi name for the embroidery and was traditionally done using a single strand of thin metal. This embroidery is usually done in sync with crystal work on the garment.
Gamthi Embroidery, not to be confused with Gamthi print, is embroidery that is created by using thick, vibrant threads. This form of embroidery originated in Gujarat and is extremely popular in the state as it is considered a cultural reflection of the state. More often than not, this form of embroidery is added on the ghagra choli, which is a well known Gujarati dress and is known for the texture of the embroidery as one can feel the patterns more finely than in the case of any other embroidery.
Gota Work or Gota Patti
Gota Work (also known as Gota Patti Work, Gota-Kinnari work or Lappe ka Kaam) is a type of metal embroidery originated in Rajasthan, India. The cities of Jaipur, Bikaner, Ajmer, Udaipur and Kota are the epicentre of uniquely styled Gota work. Elaborate patterns are created using appliqué technique with metals like gold, silver, copper etc. It is applied on to the edges of a fabric to create fancy patterns and is popularly used in edging bridal Sarees and Lehengas
Jaali work is a technique that is somewhat similar to thread work and involves making holes in the fabric. However, the method of doing so is different from the tradition of punching holes in to the cloth. Jaali work involves pulling the warp and weft threads apart with a needle without breaking the continuity of the fabric. It did not emerge as a form of embroidery on its own.
Kalamkari is an ancient style of hand painting done on cotton or silk fabric with a tamarind pen, using natural dyes. The word Kalamkari is derived from a Persian word where ‘kalam’ means pen and ‘kari’ refers to craftsmanship. This art involves 23 tedious steps of dyeing, bleaching, hand painting, block printing, starching, cleaning and more.
Kantha, a popular style of embroidery that comes from West Bengal, is a significant symbol that displays the skill and talent of the rural women in Bengal. Kantha, which basically means ‘throat’, is associated with Lord Shiva. The story revolves around how Lord Shiva consumed poison while stirring up the ocean, and therefore the significance of this word goes all the way back to the Vedic times.
Kasab embroidery, or Kasav embroidery, is a variation of zardosi embroidery which can be likened to zari work which is done on fabrics. It is considered to be one of the most opulent forms of embroidery in the Indian subcontinent because it involves threading actual fibers of gold or silver onto fabrics to create the embroidery and patterns.
Kundan embroidery on fabrics is highly sought after as the richness it bestows to the fabric is virtually unmatched by anything else. Kundan embroidery is an amalgamation of Zardosi and Kundan work. The basic process used is where after the completing the Zardosi embroidery using gold and silver threads, gemstones and pearls are studded on to it.
It is rightly said that Gujarat has given India the greatest heritage in embroidery work and craft through its famous and versatile Kutch embroidery. The hub of the Kutch embroidery work is basically located in the regions of Kutch and Saurashtra wherein the local artisans churn out the most creative and exquisite designs.From mirror and bead work to Abhala embroidery along with the usage of silk threads of bright colors, the Kutch embroidery basically ornate the entire fabric and embellishes it completely.
Mukesh work also known as Mokaish, Mukeish or Mukaish is a type of embroidery done in the capital of Uttar Pradesh i.e. Lucknow. This type of embroidery involves twisting thin metallic threads to create patterns all over the fabric. Although the most common pattern is dots, other patterns are also created in Mukesh work.
Sequins are used as adornments on fabrics, footwear, and bags. Sequins are either made of metal or plastic. In today’s times, more of plastic sequins are used worldwide. Sequins can be stitched on to the fabric in the front or can be stitched at only one point to give an effect of decorative edging.
Schiffli is a type of lace that is embroidered on using the Schiffli machine; thus giving the work the name ‘Schiffli embroidery’. The word ‘Schiffli’ is derived from the Swiss dialect of the German language, where it means ‘little boat’, referring to the hull-like shape of the shuttle used to produce this type of lace. Schiffli embroidery is produced by the characteristic use of a special kind of machinery and a chemical bath of the embroidered fabric.
Sujani (also known as Sujini) is a form of embroidery originating from the Bhusura village of Bihar in India. In ancient times, it was considered as a form of quilting wherein old sarees and dhotiswere used as the creative canvas, the cloth was folded twice or thrice and then simple stitches were done on these used clothing to add newness to them.
Stone work on dress material is an age old romantic art which uses decorative stitching in a palette of colors to create rich exclusive designs. A stone can be used alone as a centrepiece or as part of a large and varied pattern. Stone work initially involved a time-consuming process of stitching precious or semi- precious stones by hand.
Zari or Zari
Zari or Zari Work as it is known is an intricate art of weaving threads made of fine gold or silver. These threads are further woven into fabrics, primarily made of silk to create intricate patterns. The designs are so exquisite that apart from the monetary value attached to these threads, the fabric also gets an overall rich & a beautiful look. The art of Zari has been associated with the Aristocratic & Royal Persona in India for a long time. It is one of the most famous & elaborates techniques in metal embroidery.
Zardosi is a form of embroidery that came to India from Persia. Its literal translation, “zar” meaning gold and “dozi” meaning embroidery, refers to the process of using metallic-bound threads to sew embellishment on to various fabrics. This heavy and intricate style of design is said to have been brought to India with the Mughal conquerors.