Navy Antique Embroidery on a Kantha Stitch Reversible Table-Cloth

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Navy Antique Embroidery on a Kantha Stitch Reversible Table-Cloth
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StateWest Bengal
CraftKantha Embroidery
Craft StoryKantha is a type of embroidery in eastern South Asia, especially Bangladesh and parts of West Bengal and Odisha. Old saris or Dhothis are stacked on each other and hand-stitched to make a thin piece of cushion. This is normally used above a bed cushion or instead of a cushion. Kantha saris which are vividly embroidered are traditionally worn by women in Bengal.Hindu and Muslim kantha can be differentiated by the motifs and the patterns. Muslims use more geometrical patterns and floral motifs with fine craftsmanship while kantha made by Hindu women were pictorial and narrative, with forms from daily life, composed around a central floral motif.Kantha stitching is also used to make simple quilts, commonly known as Nakshi Kantha.It is made entirely from re-used cloth. The threads removed from these are then used to secure the layers together. Sari borders are removed and are re-introduced as stripes which form the borders of the quilt. The density and direction of the running stitch creates a unique and rippled effect. The design usually relies on a central circular form occupied by a multi-petal lotus flower and four mango or tree motifs to mark the four directional axis. The space between the lotus and the trees is filled in with figures, objects and symbolic motifs which depicts womens social and physical environment. The lotus as a central form is similar to theform of alpana (the ritual floor painting).
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