10 interesting facts about the comeback of Phulkari and Crochet

Reviving the magic of Indian tradition by moulding the traditional crafts to fit with contemporary aesthetics is what AIYANA is all about. What sets AIYANA apart is that it works for the cause of women empowerment.  ‘Aiyana personifies an independent, self-sufficient, empowered woman – both as it’s creator and a customer.’ AIYANA through Umeed Foundation, a foundation set up to help the disadvantaged communities in Rural Punjab in the area of Sangrur, supports over 100 women artisans across 5 production centres in Sangrur.

The artisans employ their traditional skills with Phulakri and Crochet. These designs have doses of modernity to them, ensuring that the products speak of the current and ongoing trends by pleasing the taste of the modern age customer.

What makes this recently revived skill of Phulkari and Crochet so special?  Let’s have a look

PHULKARI (a.k.a Gulkari in Iran)

  1. Phulkari means ‘flower work’ and has it’s origins as fashion in Punjab, with first mentions in the popular Punajbi folklore of Heer and Ranjha.
  1. Phulkari was almost lost to our nation after the partition of Pakistan from India. There are very few places that can actually vouch for the credibility of the sources of this skill-intensive handwoven Phulkari art. AIYANA is one of them, with it’s women artisans from Sangrur in Punjab.
THEN- Traditional Phulkari. Image Source
THEN- Traditional Phulkari. Image Source
NOW- Phulkari work being carried out at AIYANA.
NOW- Phulkari work being carried out at AIYANA. Image Source.
  1. Punjabi women did not document this traditional art of Phulkari but rather it was a skill that got passed on from generation to generation amongst the women. It also served as a great way to enjoy free time with friends, as women would come together and indulge in this art along with endless hours of gossip.
  1. Khaddar was originally the favoured fabric for Phulkari, but in modern times with more demand for detailed handwork other textiles are also gaining popularity. I am totally in awe of the clutches from AIYANA, it seems like such a unique innovation. Check some of my favourite clutches here.
  1. Phulkari because of it’s specialized needlework needs proper care. The clutches that I have from Aiyana came with the instruction that they must be kept in the plastic bag that they come in, after every use.

At this point, I must say that I am a proud owner of 3 clutches from AIYANA that speak volumes on style and make me feel extremely good when I carry them as they sure turn eyes wherever I take them along. 2 of these are phulkari, have a look.

Geometrical design clutch.
Geometrical design clutch.
My phulkari clutches from Aiyana. These can be purchased here.
My phulkari clutches from Aiyana. The top Grey and Orange phulkari work box clutch is priced at Rs.3500/- and can be purchased here. The bottom Earth Phulkari embroidered Geometrical design box clutch can be purchased  for Rs. 4000/- in various other tempting colors here

One is a crochet in Pink.

Cotton crochet clutch priced between Rs.2300/- to Rs.2500/-. The other color options can be found here.
Cotton crochet clutch priced between Rs.2300/- to Rs.2500/-. The other color options can be found here.

CROCHET

  1. Crochet as a word has it’s origin in France, literally translated it means hook.
  2. Crochet began as a cottage industry in Ireland and the products were sold to rich English aristocrats.
  3. Crochet was the hobby of the rich and was used to make several lifestyle products to decorate the home.
  4. Crochet patters and designs changed after the Victorian era however, it has made a comeback in fashion scene on ramps.
  5. Last but not the least, Queen Victoria of England popularised this craft by being passionate about crocheting.
Elegance overload!
Elegance overload!

The product range that AIYANA offers, which blend the traditional Phulkari and Crochet skills are various lifestyle products such as table runners, mats, cushion covers, tissue box holders, crochet mats, you can view the collection here, crochet throws which can be viewed here, hot water bottle covers can be seen here and extremely stylish clutches’ collection here.

What’s more? There are various customization options available to suit your requirements which may vary from special events such as weddings to even corporate events. All you have to do for customization is filling this form. It’s as simple as that!

Geometrical box clutch

Arrow clutch

AIYANA’s design team has also worked with Rina Dhaka to complete her range of Bridal Lehengas, and they have also worked with Rain Design.

The stores that retail AIYANA’s products are The Gift Shop, The Lodhi Hotel, New Delhi; Ishatvam, Khan Market, New Delhi; Parvati Villa, Colaba Causway, Mumbai; Rain IndiaIndian Roots; The Gift Shop, The Park Hotel, New Delhi; Golden Window, Guwahati and Pernia’s Pop Up Shop.

AIYANA’S official website where you can view various products can be found here. They are also on Facebook and Instagram.

AIYANA’S OFFICIAL ADDRESS:

201, Commercial Complex,
2nd Floor, Aurobindo Place,
Hauz Khas,
New Delhi – 110016
Phone: (011) 40224000
Email: aiyana@aiyana.co.in

Happy shopping!

Love,

Ruchi

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