Author: A Compilation
Publisher: Centre for Cultural Resources and Training
ISBN/UPC (if available): CCRT/CPXXXII
India is famous for the excellence it has achieved in the rich variety of textiles. Most of the Indian textiles can be commonly classified under the category of the fibre used, such as cotton, wool, silk; the process employed for weaving such as types of looms; the method used for ornamentation such as printing, embroidery, painting and dyeing.
Each set contains 12 illustrated picture cards. The first set displays the traditional blend of weaves, motifs, colours and textures of textiles of Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra and the second set that of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Tripura, Manipur, Bengal, Orissa and Arunachal Pradesh.
India has inherited a great tradition of handicrafts which has its beginnings in Man’s basic need for crating objects of beauty and social utility. Even simple household articles such as pots, mats and furniture have been decorated with stylized motifs inspired by nature.
Apart from other handicrafts, India is also famous for the excellence it has achieved in the rich variety of textiles. Excavations show that, as far back as in the third millennium B C, cotton fibre was woven into cloth and samples of printed fabrics have also been found.
India had trade links with many countries of the West and one of the commodities being exported was Indian textiles. The fabrics produced by early weaving techniques were woven with great artistry and skill.
Most of Indian textile can be commonly classified under the category of the fibre used, such as cotton, wool, silk, the process employed for weaving such as, types of looms, the method used for ornamentation such as, printing, embroidery, painting and dyeing.
The hand spun and hand woven cotton fabrics of India are known for their delicacy, sometimes popularly referred to as evening dew, woven air to suggest their fine quality. In the medieval period there was a great degree of sophistication in the designs and weaves of the muslins and India was famous for the fabrics produced at special centre in eastern India.
The Jamdani or embroidered muslins are the product of the loom and the shuttle in which the design motifs are added during the course of weaving.
Indian silks are known throughout the world for their superior quality and varied textures. India has four types of natural silk fibres, the finer quality is produced by the silk worms that feed on the Mulberry leaves. Tussar, Eri and Muga are of slightly coarser variety because they are produced by insects that feed on leaves of other trees and plants.
The artist sitting behind the loom or working with thread or paints produces with his hands, a variety of textures and designs always striving for excellence. Each piece of fabric produced is unique and one of its kind. Today, modern textiles produced in bulk using machines and synthetic materials tend to replace the methods and materials used by traditional artists. Unfortunately this is true of all handicrafts and objects of utility that the Indian craftsmen made with such love and care with their hands.
In this Folio, we present a few designs and motifs used in Indian textiles, The motifs and designs of textiles are from various states such as, Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Maharashtra. In the picture cards, a small part of the design is shown, whether it is a piece of embroidery, weave or print. This design or motif may be completed by the student or new designs created taking inspiration from the given motifs.
We hope that students working with the visuals provided in this Folio will understand and appreciate the rich tradition of textile and learn to respond to the beauty in colour, designs and texture found in the fabrics of our country.