This type of embroidery is age old Back to the 13th century the word crewel can be found in the English records. It is thought to have come from the east of Egypt, than to France and Rome, where it traveled with the Roman conquests. Crewel by definition, is the application of a variety of stitches to the surface of fabric, following a design applied to the fabric.
Designs range from the traditional to the more contemporary patterns. The most traditional design features a style known as the Jacobean style. It features floral and animal motifs, with vines and leaves twining about. Crewel embroidery uses a variety of stitches, including satin, long and short, chain, French knot and vine stitch.
Kashmir has age old tradition of skilled crafts mostly done by hand. It has a unique grace and elegance especially crewel embroidery.
It carefully highlights uniformity and consistency in stitches with fine thread knots. It is mostly done with chain stitches with delicacy of details, the motifs are generally floral, tree of life, birds, geometrical and animal motifs etc.
Crewel embroidery in India
In India, crewel embroidery has been a timeless art, mostly done by skilled craftsmen in the valley of Kashmir. The elegant art form specializes in uniform and consistent stitches done patiently with fine thread knots.
Kashmir crewel curtains are exquisite handcrafted textiles that originate from the Kashmir region, renowned for its rich tradition of embroidery and weaving. Crewel embroidery, a form of surface embroidery using wool threads, is a prominent feature of these curtains.
Here are some key characteristics and features of Kashmir crewel curtains:
- Material: Kashmir crewel curtains are typically made from high-quality natural fabrics such as cotton, linen, or silk. These fabrics provide a smooth and durable base for the intricate embroidery work.
- Embroidery: Crewel embroidery is characterized by the use of thick wool yarns to create elaborate designs on the fabric. Traditional Kashmiri crewel embroidery often features intricate floral motifs, paisleys, vines, and geometric patterns. The embroidery is done by hand using a specialized hook known as an aari needle.
- Designs: The designs on Kashmir crewel curtains are inspired by the rich cultural heritage and natural beauty of the region. They may include traditional Kashmiri motifs, Persian influences, or Mughal-inspired patterns. The embroidery work is often done in vibrant colors, adding a touch of elegance and sophistication to the curtains.
- Versatility: Kashmir crewel curtains are versatile and can be used in various interior settings. They are often used as window treatments to add warmth and style to living rooms, bedrooms, or dining areas. Additionally, they can be used as room dividers or decorative wall hangings to enhance the ambiance of a space.
- Craftsmanship: Crafted by skilled artisans with generations of experience, Kashmir crewel curtains are known for their superior craftsmanship and attention to detail. Each piece is meticulously embroidered by hand, ensuring the highest quality and authenticity.
- Durability: Due to the use of high-quality fabrics and wool threads, Kashmir crewel curtains are durable and long-lasting. With proper care, they can retain their beauty and elegance for many years, making them a worthwhile investment for any home.
Overall, Kashmir crewel curtains are not just functional window coverings but also exquisite works of art that showcase the rich cultural heritage and craftsmanship of the Kashmiri artisans. They add a touch of luxury and sophistication to any interior space, making them highly sought after by interior designers and homeowners alike.