Region & Origin: Phulkari is an embroidery style that originated in Punjab, denoting the technique of making flowers with needle and thread has a history etched in the culture of Punjab.
Spun from the charkha, this spectacular style of embroidery is patterned on odanis, shawls, Kurtis, and chunaris.
The earliest available article of phulkari embroidery is a rumal embroidered during 15th century by Bebe Nanaki, sister of guru Nanak dev.
Also, it has been found that the word phulkari appears in the famous love story ‘Heer Ranjha’ (a love tale) by Waris Shah (1725-1790)
motif is left unembroidered or is embroidered in an offbeat color. This motif is called ‘nazarbuti’
which is considered to ward off the evil eye.
2.Bagh (“garden”)-It is a special ceremonial type of Phulkari. Bagh literally means “garden of flowers.” Designs are so intricately woven such that the base fabric isn’t visible. Thus the embroidery becomes the fabric itself. Unlike Phulkari, Bagh demands more time and patience and more material, thereby increasing the expense. Thus Bagh sets out to be a status symbol.
3. Chop – Embroidered with straight stitch/Holbein stitch, which has the specificity of creating the same design on both sides of the Khaddar (fabric), is used. It is usually embroidered on the selvedge of the fabric, and the other two ends are left plain. It is generally embroidered with one color (Golden or yellowish golden mostly).
Various types of Phulkari in India:
- Thirma: Symbol of purity, worn by elderly women & widows, but at times, the choice of white is made for esthetical reasons.
2.Bawan Bagh: Mosaic of 52 different patterns that decorate the piece and is the rarest of all.
3.Vari--daBagh: Made on an orange-reddish khaddar with the main pattern being a group of three four small concentric lozenges (diamond) of growing size.
4.Darshan Dwar: For adorning the walls and homes, especially when the Holy book of the Sikhs, Guru Granth Sahib is brought. It has designs of flowers, animals, birds, etc. Made for a temple as an offering to thank god after a wish has been fulfilled.
5.Chhamaas: In this pattern, mirrors are sewn into the cloth giving it a Rajasthani Punjabi look.
6.Kaudi Bagh: Chains of small white squares representing stylized cowries.
7.Panchranga: Decorated with five different colors.
8.Meenakari: Made of gold and white-colored pat, is decorated with small multicolored referring to enamel work (meenakari)
9.Surajmukhi: Sunflower refers to the main pattern of this Phulkari.
You would also like to know: Phulkari-In Bollywood Style
1. Search for designers who have taken inspiration from Phulkari and write a brief about their collection.
2. Make a Moodboard taking Phulkari as an inspiration and, if possible, design your collection.
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