A Rendezvous with Crafts : Bandhani

A Rendezvous with Crafts : Bandhani

India’s diverse culture is defined by it’s varied customs, languages, food, music and artwork. Bandhani is a form of textile art, which has its origins in the state of Gujarat, in India. It is one of the most widely recognised and used fabrics in the country. Bandhani is produced mainly in bright colours like red, blue, pink, yellow, etc. The process of creating the pattern on the fabric is a tie-dye process, where a plain fabric is tied at several points using threads, and dipped in a dye of desired colour, creating this pattern.


Very elaborate motifs are made, in Bandhani work. These include flowers, creepers, bells and jalas. Knots are placed in clusters each with a different name, for example, a single dot is called Ekdali, three knots is called Trikunti and four knots is called Chaubundi. Such clusters are worked intricately into patterns such as Shikargah (mountain‐like), Jaaldar (web‐like), Beldaar (vine‐like) etc.

Dungar Shahi – the mountain‐pattern
‘Chaubasi’ – in groups of four
Tikunthi – circles and squares appear in a group of three
Satbandi – in groups of seven
Ekdali – a dot
Boond – a small dot with a dark centre
Kodi – tear or drop shaped
Laddu Jalebi (after the name of Indian Sweets) – the swirling

The centers of tie and dye fabrics, especially in Gujarat are Jamnagar in Saurashtra (the water in this area brings out the brightest red while dying), and Ahmedabad. The finest bandhni work of Rajasthan comes from Bikaner, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Barmer, Pali, Udaipur and Nathdwara. Rajasthan is well known for its Leheriya pattern – literally meaning waves. These are harmoniously arranged diagonal stripes, which were originally, dyed in the auspicious colors of yellow and red. Pochampalli is also one of the three main traditional yarn-dyeing centers in the country. The process of making bandhni (tie and dye) varies in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Even the patterns, designs and craftsmanship vary in both the regions. The craftsmen from Rajasthan are easily recognized because they grow a nail on their little finger to facilitate the lifting of cloth for tying or wear a small metal ring with a point. The Gujarati craftsmen prefer to work without these aids. The flow is much better when one works with one’s bare hands as it assures no damage to the cloth. The dyeing and printing of textiles has become a highly developed craft in Gujarat.

Source : The Indian Crafts


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *