How KUSHNI is reviving the dying art of heritage zardozi.
Zardozi embroidery is a traditional form of hand embroidery that originated in Persia and was later adopted and developed in India during the Mughal era. The term "zardozi" comes from two Persian words: "zar" meaning gold, and "dozi" meaning embroidery. Thus, zardozi refers to embroidery that is done with gold or silver metallic threads.
Zardozi embroidery is typically done on fabrics such as silk, velvet, and satin, and is often used to embellish clothing items like salwar kameez, kurtas, lehengas, long shirts, bags, shoes, and home decor items. The embroidery is done using a needle and metallic threads, which are sewn onto the fabric to create intricate designs. In addition to metallic threads, other materials such as beads, sequins, and stones can also be used to enhance the embroidery.
Traditionally, zardozi embroidery was done by highly skilled craftsmen who would spend months or even years creating a single piece of embroidery. Today, however, the art form has become more accessible and is practiced by both craftsmen and hobbyists around the world. Slow fashion brands driven by sustainable processes such as KUSHNI, are focused on making these crafts more relevant to the global market as a means to preserve this heritage. "Our mission is to take Indian craftsmanship to the world through our young and contemporary approach to Indian occasion wear and every essentials.” says KUSHNI founder Khushbu Shrivastava.
Zardozi embroidery is highly valued for its intricate designs and the use of precious materials such as gold and silver. It is considered a luxurious form of embroidery and is often used to create special occasion clothing and accessories. The art form has also played an important role in preserving traditional Indian craftsmanship and has helped to keep alive a centuries-old tradition of hand embroidery.