Week of June 17, 2018 – India

In January of 2014 I was privileged to take a two-week trip to India with a group of 19 people including Jinny Beyer.  We started in Ahmedabad and traveled into the Gujarat region looking for and learning about textiles that were created there.  I thought I would share a few of my smaller treasures with you.  This first piece is one of my favorites.  It is an antique embroidered cloth with one of the many hundreds of Hindu gods illustrated.  Someone would hang it over a doorway to add color and decoration.  I suppose it was also a reminder to pray.  I just love the intricate needle work.

The next one is a head piece that is also embroidered and heavily padded.  Women would wear it as a protection on their head (I included a picture of me with it on my head, so you get the idea) and then put a large pot full of water which they had drawn at the local well and carry home their water with a little less discomfort.  It intrigued me that even their everyday household items were beautifully decorated.

I guess a trip to India without some sort of textile with elephants on it would be a wasted trip.  This next piece was commercially made (not hand done as the first two are) but it still includes beautiful machine embroidery showing off the purple and orange elephants.

This last piece is actually quite large and quite common.  It is part of a sari that has been recycled.  They take two saris and stitch them together with what appears to be long running stitches the length of the sari (see close-up).  Then this new quilt (with no batting) can be used for many purposes.  Sometimes it is used with several others to hang and create walls in a humble dwelling.  It can also be a light cover or when combined with a few others, it is a place to sleep.  I love that they don’t have to be perfect.  There might even be a few repairs in the old sari that is used, and the stitches are not all even or in a straight line.  But it serves a purpose for many households.  It is also a reminder to me of how much I love my drywall walls and wood doors, and my bed with a mattress!  Sometimes it is good to travel in order to be reminded of all the many luxuries we possess.

Just for You – Quilt Quote “Ask not what your fabric can do for you, but what you can do for your fabric.”

If you have any comments or questions, please contact Phyllis at:  [email protected]