Kashmir shawl : one of the identity of Kashmir

Mountains with a rich and ancient heritage of craftsmanship. It is a land of unique motifs and designing techniques that have been transformed and perfected over centuries. Mastering Kashmiri craftsmanship takes years of training and designing shawls is an art that has been carried forward through generations of craftsmen.

Inspired by ancient techniques, most of our shawls and stoles are first hand-woven from the raw material. Kashmiri shawls are primarily made from three types of fibres: wool, pashmina and silk. The pashmina yarn, also famously known as ‘cashmere’, comes from the hair of the Himalayan goat, a rare animal living above 4,000 metres altitude, only found in Kashmir. A variety of blends of Kashmiri wool with pashmina, and silk with pashmina are also used to weave our semi-pashmina shawls and stoles .

Some of the finest silks in the world also comes from Kashmir as sericulture and tweed weaving are among the major industries. As a matter of fact, untill the 1940s, this precious silk yarn produced in this Valley was exported all over Europe.

Handicrafts in Kashmir have traditionally been family run businesses. While the women are closely involved in the wool spinning and embroidery, the men assist in plying the heavy hand looms. Once the products are woven, the shawls are sent to the dyers and go through a process of hand dyeing, which is done using natural colours. Kashmiri shawls and stoles are designed with earthy colours, but more recently, all other colour are also being used. After dyeing, the shawls and stoles go back to the craftsmen and then starts the intricate process of designing patterns using different sizes of needles depending on the kinds of embroidery.

Courtesy by  : kashmirshawlatelier