Phulkari

 

 

Phulkari, an art of decorating shawls, dupattas with embroidered floral motifs developed in the 15th century in Punjab. Phulkari, is a skillful manipulation of single stitch that provides interesting pattern on the cloth. The smaller the stitch, finer is the quality of the embroidery. The silk threads in golden yellow, red, crimson, orange, green, blue, and pink are usually employed for the embroidery. The notable aspect of this technique is that single strand was used at a time, each part worked in one color and the varied color effect is obtained by clever use of horizontal, vertical or diagonal stitches.

The base cloth that was used for Phulkari in olden times was usually homespun cloth.

In Phulkari when the design is worked very closely that even a square inch of the base cloth is not visible then it is called 'Bagh'.

Besides floral motifs, birds, animals, human figures, vegetables, pots, buildings, rivers, the sun and the moon, scenes of village life, and other imagery were embroidered. Mention must be made of dhaniya bagh (coriander garden), motia bagh (jasmine garden), satranga bagh (garden of rainbow), leheria bagh (garden of waves) and many other depictions.

Young women in Punjab often created Phulkari for their trousseau. Many folk songs on Phulkari are part of Punjab culture.