House of Wandering Silk Nakshi Kantha Kaleidoscope Hand Embroidered Wrap
Silk scarf covered in all-over and illustrative hand embroidery, showcasing the finest of the nakshi kantha tradition. One scarf takes between 1-2 months to complete.
- Measures 79" by 20” with small variations.
- Hand embroidery on hand woven tussar silk.
- Versatile: can be worn wrapped around the shoulders, shawl-style; soft enough to scrunch up and wear scarf-style around the neck; beautiful enough to add a home accent draped over a sofa or hung on a wall.
Nakshi kantha is a traditional running stitch from Bengal, made up of motifs influenced by religion, culture and the lives of the women stitching them.
The creation of our nakshi kantha is a lengthy process, laboriously undertaken in the verdant villages of rural West Bengal. Under the auspices or 60 year old Takdira Begum, a national awardee for her kantha work, 100 skilled women artisans hand embroider this beautiful fabric.
The first step in this process is the design of the pattern to be embroidered, which is then drawn onto tracing paper. This is done by Takdira Begum herself, who also decides on the colour palette. Next, the lines of the pattern are punctured by hand with a pin and the paper is then laid over the silk fabric. A paste of chalk and turpentine is rubbed over the paper, and seeps through the small pin-holes onto the fabric below.
Now the silk has the pattern lines traced onto it. It's ironed and distributed amongst the artisans who take it home and stitch the kantha. Once complete, the fabric is hand washed several times to remove any stains and the tracing lines. Any variations or irregularities are part of the design and inherent to the production process.
- Eco: entirely hand made processes mean this item is eco-friendly. All materials are natural and thus bio-degradable.
- Women empowerment: handwork exclusively by women from highly marginalised communities. This work provides their only opportunity for earning income in their villages. The home-based work is suitable for all women and prevents urban migration.
- Responsible design: maintaining highest quality levels and use of traditional techniques and motifs ensures this ancient skill is preserved.
A beautiful wrap that is a true work of art. All-over, illustrative kantha hand embroidery in traditional floral motifs covers the hand woven tussar silk. It's large enough to wear as a wrap across the shoulders, and soft enough to scrunch up and wear scarf-style around the neck. Nakshi kantha is made up of motifs influenced by religion, culture and the lives of the women stitching them. This piece in the natural creamy ivory of tussar silk with black kantha.
Material & Size
Made from 100% silk in West Bengal, India. Kantha stitch is made using cotton thread. Measures 180cm by 55cm (35")
Dry cleaning recommended.