Textile Traditions of India

Shawl. Loom woven design in natural dyes on wool or goat fleece; 270 cm x 140 cm. Kashmir. c. late 18th century. 7/1285.

The kani shawl, a particular loom-woven shawl, as opposed to the later amli or embroidered variety, was once the mainstay of the economic industry in Kashmir and the village of Kanihama1 from where the shawl probably derives its name.

The hashiya2, or narrow-patterned border along the sides of this yellow ochre shawl is executed in a floral creeper on a white ground. The broad end-pieces or phala are embellished with flowering cones shaping out into an ambi or mango motif. These in turn are bound between two horizontal narrow borders, or tanjir, in single flower motifs within separate hexagonal white grounds.

1. Ames, 1986, p.63
2. Irwin, 1955, p.49-50

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