Lucknow Chikan Craft
9 March, 2021
Any cotton-weaved article that comes from Lucknow" may be the most agreeable definition of Chikan today. Students of history say that the word Chikan was gotten from the Persian word "chikin" or "chikeen" which implies any sort of weaved texture.
The sources of this embroidery remain covered in the fogs of time. The fine Mughal little canvases portray Emperor Jahangir in flowy white muslin pieces of clothing with fine "white" weaving. Kamala Devi Chattopadhyay believes that chikan could be traced all the way back to the hour of King Harsha (590-647 CE), who is said to have had an extraordinary affection for white weaved muslin pieces of clothing, with no tone, no ornamentation, and nothing dynamite to adorn it. Megasthanes, in the third century B.C, had referenced the use of "blossomed muslin" by Indians in the courts of Chandragupta Maurya.
The majority of written accounts trace the art of chikan embroidery to Bengal, from where the artisans migrated to the cities of Lucknow and Awadh to take advantage of the courtly patronage of the Nawabs.
The Chikankari embroidery embellished both men's and women's garments. From the flowy angarkhas and chogas (tunics), achkans, and kurtas to topis and cummerbands of men's garments, it also accentuated women's lehengas and odhnis. The pure white on white embroidery translated a simple white ensemble into an exotic fashion statement. During the Colonial era, the application of Chikankari embroidery increased manifold and embellished the items exported to Britain — from muslin dresses, collars, table covers, and runners to mats, napkins, and tea covers!
With the advent of the British empire, the application of Chikanwork embroidery increased multifold and embellished almost everything that was exported — including muslin dresses, collars, table covers, runners, mats, napkins, and tea covers.
The vintage patterns of chikan embroidery showcase the artistic skills that were possible through nimble fingers, which were strongly influenced by Persian and Mughal architecture. The jaalis of the Taj Mahal and the walls of the famous Imambara mosque in Lucknow have inspired the many motifs of Chikankari embroidery.
The Ghikankari weaving bunch is one of the greatest craftsman groups in India, with about 2.5 lakh of hand craftsmen who are guaranteed a Geographical sign to ensure the identity of the workmanship. The plan for weaving is done completely by hand without utilizing any casings. The weaving configuration is first moved to the texture utilizing cut woodblocks, and afterward, the lines are done on it. A mix of cleanser, pop, dye, and Neel are utilized at last to eliminate the printing ink marks and furthermore give splendor to the texture.
The Ghikankari is one more workmanship that grandstands India's imperative expert craftsmanship!