New Delhi, April 8 IANS | 9 months ago

The state of Punjab has more to offer than food such as the stereotyped butter chicken and lassi. Reinforcing this is a festival that begins here April 12, focussing on the state's traditional embroidery technique 'phulkari', along with several other things.

"Mela Phulkari", conceptualised and curated by art historian Alka Pande along with Harinder Singh, creative head behind the shop '1469' - one-stop-shop for Punjab-flavoured designs - is aimed at projecting how phulkari is seen in a Punjabi home.

"Phulkari in this festival becomes an allegory of how we experience diversity of Punjab, and many stories it brings to the people of the capital," Pande told IANS.

"The festival will also focus on the living heritage of the craft and how phulkari is seen and how it has transformed to suit contemporary fashion," she added.

Apart from displaying various narratives of this craft, the festival will also offer Delhiites the richness of colourful pakhis (hand fans), madanis (butter churner), tilla jutis (footwear), manja (village cots), and parandis (the festive hair accessory).

Over 150 year-old phulkaris - some belonging to brand 1469 and some borrowed from royal families - will be for public viewing at the India Habitat Centre.

"There used to be a time when marriage ceremonies would be incomplete without the ornate phulkari work. It was customary for all married women to wear these dupattas for all auspicious occasions," said Harinder Singh, creative head of 1469.

"This intricate work could also be seen on wallets. So, this festival is a bid to bring back the good old days," he added.

The exhibition will end April 24.

(Posted on 08-04-2014)

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