Thread embroidery is one of the defining characteristics of Indian ethnic attire as one can be hard pressed to find Indian garments that don’t have a certain level of embroidery work done on them. Embroidery itself is one of the oldest forms of expression in the world of fashion and one of the most important aspects used to elevate an outfit from plain to fancy, formal or glamorous. Whether something as simple as the running stitch is used to create an outfit or something far more complicated, embroidery can certainly change the entire appeal of the outfit itself.
In India, one of the biggest hubs for embroidery is Lucknow because this is where the famous Chikankari embroidery originated. This embroidery dates back to the Mughal Era and is extremely famous in India for its highly distinctive look. One of the aspects that make this so distinctive is that it is usually done with white thread which creates a very subtle, feminine appeal for the designs. Due to the delicate nature of this embroidery, it is usually carried out on dainty fabrics such as chiffon and georgette. This is one of the most coveted styles of embroidery in India.
When silver thread embroidery or gold thread embroidery is incorporated into a design, this is known as zari work. Zari is also a famous style of embroidery which is prevalent in India and is mainly used for more formal and richer garments. In this style, threads made of actual gold or silver are used to create intricate patterns or designs onto the garments.
Intricate Detailing With Threads
Due to the fact that these threads can be quite heavy, they are mostly used on sturdier fabrics such as silk, cotton silk, velvet and khadi so that they can support the embroidery without tearing. Garments with zari embroidery are mostly worn for more formal events or occasions, which is important to note when looking for zari embroidery garments.
Thread embroidery designs are one of the most important aspects of fashion because they can really set the overall tone of the garment and create something that is appropriate for both, formal events as well as casual events. Different styles of embroidery tend to embody different motifs. For instance, when looking at Chikankari embroidery, this style usually incorporates themes derived from nature as opposed to abstract themes that are generally used in other styles. Zari work, for instance, has extremely ethnic looking and abstract designs largely inspired by the Persian sense of aesthetics that was brought to India by the Mughals. Mythological motifs are also very popular in different parts of India.
Silk thread embroidery is also a famous style of embroidery that is used in India and this incorporates the use of silk threads in order to create different kinds of patterns or looks. This is also considered to be a heavier form of embroidery which creates an extremely elegant and rich look on the garment that it is being used on.
It is immensely opulent and is not always necessarily carried out on silk fabrics or variants of silk. The most commonly seen version of silk thread embroidery in India is Resham work, which is typically done by hand. Another popular base material for hand thread embroidery designs in India is cotton. Cotton thread embroidery has a more casual look and is done on every day wear garments. Wool fabrics are also used to in certain types of embroidery styles, such as the Kashida or Kashmiri embroidery designs.
Urban thread embroidery tends to be a little more abstract with contemporary deigns that draw their influence from western aesthetics in order to appeal to the younger crowd. These are extremely interesting because they represent a fusion between western aesthetics and Indian styles or trends. They can be done on a variety of garments or different kinds of fabrics quite easily.
When wearing a garment that incorporates any kind of thread embroidery, it is important to note that using ethnic aesthetics works the best with these types of garments as they highlight the aesthetic appeal of the garment itself quite nicely. More often than not, women choose to wear Indian jewelry with these garments. They come in the form of Kundan sets, Meenakari sets, gold sets and Polki earrings. Wearing heavier sets of jewelry is appropriate for formal occasions or events while wearing lighter ones works best for casual events or even semi formal ones.
Indian shoes are a great way to accessorize these garments as well. Some of the most coveted shoes include juttis which can be paired with an Anarkali suit easily as well as mojaris for men which can be paired with an interestingly embroidered sherwani.