Textile Tourism In Madhya Pradesh.

Madhya Pradesh known as ‘Heart of India’ due to its location at the centre of India.  Madhya Pradesh is well known for its incredible culture. Though the state has some cultural similarities to states like Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra, It still owns a unique culture of its own. Handicrafts of Madhya Pradesh are well sought after owing to their intricate designing. The state is home to followers of diverse religions like Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Jainism, and Buddhism etc. A significant chunk of the population belongs to tribal communities which make up 20% of the total population of the state.

This diversity in communities has rendered Madhya Pradesh a unique culture which can be titled as traditional and ethnic. A prominent element of Madhya Pradesh’s culture is its traditional clothing. In the modernized world, the people of Madhya Pradesh still preserve their traditional clothing heritage.

Madhya Pradesh is known for various printing techniques namely hand-block printing using mainly natural colors, batik printing and techniques of tying and dyeing. Weaving specialties of Madhya Pradesh are Chanderi and Maheshwari silk and cotton clothes.

BAGH: The origins of the Bagh print are uncertain, but it is believed that the practice is over 1,000 years old, with the techniques having been handed down through family practice from generation to generation. Bagh print is a traditional Indian handicraft originating in Bagh, Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh, India. The process is characterized by hand printed woodblock relief prints with naturally sourced pigments and dyes. Bagh print fabric motifs are typically geometric, paisley, or floral compositions dyed with vegetable colours of red and black over a white background, and are a popular textile printing product. Its name is derived from the village Bagh located on the banks of the Bagh River.

Variety of cloth with Bagh Print readily available: Double Bhatti Bagh (only red tint), Bagh Print on Maheshwari, Bagh Print on Cotton, Bagh Print on Chanderi, Bagh Print on Shantoon, Bagh Print on Georgette.

Variety of cloth with Bagh Print only on bulk order: Bagh Print on Silk, Bagh Print on Kosa,  Bagh Print on Lenin.

MAHESHWARI: The origin of the Maheshwari sarees dates back to the 18th century, when the state of Indore in Madhya Pradesh was ruled by Queen Ahilyabai Holkar. … It is believed that Queen Ahilyabai herself created the design of the first saree, With fine cotton yarns in its weft and silk in the warp, this fabric islight and airy for the summers, yet has the subtle luster of silk. The Maheshwari sari is not made by one person or one community, but the entire town is involved in this craft in some way or another. According to legends, Queen Ahilyabai ordered craftsmen from Surat and Malwa to design special 9-yard sarees to be gifted to royal guests and relatives. The sarees that were produced by these craftsmen became popular as Maheshwari sarees. It is believed that Queen Ahilyabai herself created the design of the first saree. These sarees were originally worn by the ladies of royal status, but nowadays, they are available in both national and international markets.

Originally, the Maheshwari saree was made of pure silk. Then in course of time, these sarees began to be made in pure cotton and with a mixture of silk and cotton (silk yarn in the warp and cotton in the weft). Nowadays, wool is also being used in the production of Maheshwari sarees. These sarees are extremely light in weight and present a sharp contrast to the Kanchipuram sarees of South India.

Maheshwari Sarees, Suits, Dupattas, Kurtis with different-different colors like Angoori (grape green), Dalimbi (deep pink), Gul Bakshi (magenta), Jaamla (purple), Tapkeer (deep brown), Aamrak (golden), Rani (deep pink), Dhaani (green) and Kaashi (light purple) as usually, vegetable dyes are used in the preparation of these sarees. These Silk and Cotton dress material and sarees are weaved with distinctive designs involving stripes, checks, and floral borders like Ganga Jamuna Border, Teen Kinar Border, Buta Pallu, Jari Skirt border, Resham Buti etc.

CHANDERI:  Chanderi is a traditional ethnic fabric characterized by its lightweight, sheer texture and fine luxurious feel. Chanderi fabric is produced by weaving in silk and golden Zari in the traditional cotton yarn that results in the creation of the shimmering texture. The fabric borrowed its name from the small town Chanderi in Madhya Pradesh where traditional weavers practice the art of producing textured sarees in cotton and silk decorated with fine zari work. The weaving culture of Chanderi emerged between the 2nd and 7th centuries. It is situated on the boundary of two cultural regions of the state, Malwa and Bundelkhand. The people of the Vindhyachal Ranges have a wide range of traditions. In the 11th century the trade locations Malwa, Medwa, central India and south Gujarat increased the region’s importance. The Chanderi sari tradition began in the 13th century. In the beginning, the weavers were Muslims. Around 1350, Koshti weavers from Jhansi migrated to Chanderi and settled there. During the Mughal period, the textile business of Chanderi reached its peak.

Chanderi sarees and dress material are produced from three kinds of fabric: pure silk, Chanderi cotton and silk cotton. The patterns you can select are Traditional coin, floral art, peacocks, Motifs, Paisleys, Plain/ Solid, Polka Dots, geometric designs etc. Creation of unique buttis or motifs and the transparent or sheer texture of Chanderi fabric are the two prime characteristics that distinguish it from other handloom fabrics. The saris are among the finest in India and are known for their gold and silver brocade or zari, fine silk, and opulent embroidery.

BATIK: “Batik” is a term that has its origins in Indonesia. It may have been derived from a word called ‘ambatik’ that translates into “a dotted piece of cloth”. Batik is commonly used to describe a fabric dyeing process that utilizes a special resist method. In this technique, selected cloth areas are covered with a dye-proof substance as it helps prevent absorption of colours. The Java region in Indonesia is particularly known for its creative use of the Batik technique by skilled artists. The Batik fabric has grown to become quite popular all over the world, especially in Asian countries. One of the reasons for this popularity is that the technique allows an artist to be extremely creative. They can utilize actual drawings for applying patterns instead of using thread weaving. Also, Batik fabric is known for its durability. This means that colours used have a much higher resistance to wear as compared to printed or painted fabrics. Batik fabrics are also less likely to fade early and hence last for several years!

While modern batik fabrics take much inspiration from the past, they have very few similarities with the traditional styles. For instance, an artist might use discharge dyeing, etching, stencils and wax blends with custom resist values. He/she may also work with a variety of different fabrics like wool, silk, leather and cotton.

Batik is known to be among the most artistic techniques of fabric dyeing. It is also a very subtle resist method and allows artists to discover unique processes that help create innovative patterns for customers.

Batik art received an impetus when it was introduced as a subject at the famous university of Shantiniketan in Calcutta. Chola Mandal in Madras is also popular for its Batik product. Outside India, Indonesia is considered the cradle of batik with its many designs, which are restricted for different wearers and occasions. Indonesian batik has characters of mystic and ritualistic connection. Objects like flowers, trees and birds have a significant meaning. The Sawat in Javanese batik has its origins in Hindu mythology, as it is the decorative form of Garuda, Lord Vishnu’s bird. ‘Sidomukti’ is another Hindu influence in batik. ‘Mukti’ means happiness and prosperity in the Hindu mythology. While Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand are known for their block printing (tjab) method to create batik on a large scale, in Sri Lanka batik is still made by hand. The art of Batik is also practiced in some African countries.

You can choose from Pillow cover, sarees, suits, Kurti, Bedsheet and dress material.

Zari, Zardozi: we have expert craftsmen for Zari-Zardozi.

The richest embroidery of India is the Zari and the zardozi, which is known since late 16th century. This art form was introduced in India by the Mughal invaders. The Bhopal city of Madhya Pradesh is also one of the places where the traditional way of zardozi is still practiced. This place has great historical experiences, which have their impression on the art and culture of the place. Bhopal has its own unique art and culture with the rich heritage.

Zardozi is a style of embroidery, which has been in India since the time of Ramayana, Mahabharata. The Actual original process of Zardozi is known as ‘Kalabatun’. Real gold and silver wires were used enclosed along with the silk threads to decorate satin and velvet fabrics. Along with the threads, other rich add-ons such as sequins, beads, precious and semi-precious stones and pearls were also sewn on. These kinds of embroidered works were used in the Mughal Era by the royalty to adorn tent walls in the form of tapestries and wall hangings, as well as on accessories for elephants and horses. Zardozi comes from two Persian words: zar or zarin meaning ‘gold’, and dozi meaning ‘sewing’. Zardozi is a type of heavy and elaborate metal embroidery on a silk, satin, or velvet fabric base. Designs are often created using gold and silver threads and can incorporate pearls, beads, and precious stones. It is used as decoration for a wide range of applications, including clothes, household textiles,

Historically, it was used to adorn the walls of royal tents, scabbards, wall hangings and the paraphernalia of regal elephants and horses.

Initially, the embroidery was done with pure silver wires and real gold leaves. However, today, craftsmen make use of a combination of copper wire, with a golden or silver polish, and silk thread.

Zari thread is used widely in weaving but more selectively in embroidery.For intricate patterns gijai or a thin, stiff wire is used; sitara, a small star-shaped metal piece is used for floral designs.This type of embroidery is called salma-sitara.The thicker kalabattu is a braided gold thread used for borders while the thinner variety is used at the end of the drawstring of purses or batwas, and in tassels, necklaces, and strings.Tikora is a gold thread spirally twisted for complicated designs.The dull zari thread is called kora and the more shiny one is called chikna.The equipment that is used for embroidery is a rectangular wooden-frame called karchob and a wooden leg called thapa used for sewing laces.Listed below are different kinds of zari work.

Zardozi: This is a heavy and more elaborate embroidery work which uses varieties of gold threads, spangles, beads, seed pearls, wire, and gota. It is used to embellish wedding outfits, heavy coats, cushions, curtains, canopies, animal trappings, bags, purses, belts, and shoes. The material on which this kind of embroidery is done is usually heavy silk, velvet and satin. The kind of stitches found are salma-sitara, gijai, badla, katori, and seed pearls, among others.