The first literary information about textiles in
Silk fabrics from south
before the coming of the Europeans to
The past traditions of the textile and handlooms can still be seen amongst the motifs, patterns, designs, and the old techniques of weaving, still employed by the weavers.
BROCADES - THE TRADITION OF BRINGING SILK TO LIFE
Brocade weaving, especially with gold and silver, has been an age-old tradition in
REFINING SILK FOR BROCADE MAKING
Raw silk is specially treated for brocades. It is first twisted (called 'silk throwing') after which the threads undergo reeling and checking for uniformity and roundness. When the yarn has been processed, it is bleached and "degummed", as raw silk has a gum-like substance (sericin) in its composition. This has to be removed in order to bring out the sheen and softness and to enable penetration of the dye. The task has to be done with great care as the fibers can weaken or get damaged. The silk is boiled in soap water for a certain duration and then sent for dying.
IMPORTANCE OF COLOR
Color plays a vital part in weaving a brocade. The charm and subtle beauty of the brocade depends upon color synchronization. Colors are surcharged with nuances of mood and poetic association in fabrics and weaving as much as in painting.
Red - the color of love. The three tones of red evoke the three states of love.
Yellow - is the color of vasant (spring), of young blossoms, southern winds and swarms of bees.
Nila (indigo) - the color of Lord Krishna who is likened to a rain-filled cloud.
Hari nila - the color of water in which the sky is reflected.
Gerwa (saffron) - the color of the earth and of the yogi the wandering minstrel, the seer, the poet who renounces the world.
Earlier, vegetable dyes were used during weaving. These produced fast colors, lasted for almost a generation, and remained as beautiful and vivid as ever. Nowadays aniline dyes have gained popularity as they are cheaper, less time-consuming and produce a larger variety of colors.
MAKING NAKSHAS (DESIGNS) ON BROCADES
Making of nakshas (designs) forms an important part of brocade weaving.
CHANGES IN DESIGNS THROUGH THE CENTURIES
Designs and motifs have undergone changes gradually and imperceptibly. These changes can be traced through paintings made during different periods. Ajanta and Bagh murals show the existence of different techniques of designs and textiles. During the Gupta period (14th century A.D.). popular designs were formal floral motifs or scrolls entwined with hansas or sinhas -bird and animal depictions. In the 16th century, the old designs were replaced by Persian floral motifs. Akbari paintings show half-blooming flowers, the Jehangir period, full-blown blossom and the Shahjehan period, tiny blossoms with emphasis on the leaves. In the 19th century, with the advent of British rule, there was a drastic change in designs. Some brocades started depicting English wallpaper designs to suit the tastes of the British rule.
Friday, March 11, 2011
at 4:06 PM