Jamdani cotton fabric is a fine woven fabric crafted by supplementary weft technique of weaving. Historically referred to as Muslin, the jamdani textile is one of the most unique crafts for which Anuprerna is working along with around 100+ Jamdani weavers scattered across four villages in the Bengal region. With a work relation of up to 30+ years, Anuprerna has been producing ethical, sustainable and beautiful handwoven textiles using indigenous weaves and techniques of Bengal.
During the regime (1605-1627) of Mughal emperor Jahangir, the plain Jamdani muslin was decorated with numerous floral designs. The emperor was seen wearing a Jamdani swatch around his waist on many occasions.
Jamdani fabric finds fleeting mentions in pieces of literature as ancient as Arthashastra (3rd cent. BC) and also occupies space in accounts of travellers & traders from China, Arabia and Italy who noted its unparalleled finesse.
For years, Jamdani was limited to traditional ethnic wear only.The Jamdani weaving tradition is of Bengali origin. However, today, this exquisite craft has evolved to incorporate modern silhouettes as well. You can read about it here.
Anuprerna is closely working with Jamdani weavers in four clusters spread across the district of Burdwan in West Bengal.
The jamdani weave is a supplementary weft technique of weaving, where the artistic motifs are produced by a non-structural weft, in addition to the standard weft that holds the warp threads together.
The standard weft creates a fine, sheer fabric while the supplementary weft with thicker threads adds intricate patterns to it. Each one of the motif designs is handwoven into the muslin using a single continuous extra weft yarn.
The result is a complex mix of different patterns that appear to float on the surface of the Jamdani fabric. The pattern is not sketched or outlined on the fabric but is drawn on graph paper and placed underneath the warp. Often a mixture of cotton and gold thread was used. Usually the Jamdani motifs are geometric in its silhouette
The Jamdani motifs were traditionally inspired by nature, be it flora or fauna. And the characteristic feature of this craft was that motifs were always translated into geometric outlines or shapes.
Popular traditional Jamdani motif include panna hajar (thousand emeralds), kalka (paisley), butidar (small flowers), fulwar (flowers arranged in straight rows), tersa (diagonal patterns), jalar (motifs evenly covering the entire saree), duria (polka spots) and charkona (rectangular motifs).
Anuprerna is closely working with the artisans in experimenting with new designs and motifs, new techniques and materials to create contemporary versions of traditional Jamdani fabrics like elephant, floral, pilka dots etc. Jamdani motifs are rich in variety and meaning, and are often chosen for their symbolic significance, as well as for their aesthetic appeal. We want to create something new which has a global appeal yet preserving the culture, symbolism, and aesthetics behind it.
Traditionally, the use of Jamdani was limited to mainly sarees and was therefore was always woven into a fine muslin fabric.
However, with mordernisation, the craft has evolved and been adapted to modern silhouettes. Today Jamdani come in higher gsm which allows wider application to western styles.
Besides this, Jamdani motif design however has evolved from traditional designs to more contemporary ones. Over time, these ancient motifs have become simplified. Today we can see Jamdani fabrics with minimalistic modern motif design in abstract geometric shapes along with varying size and colour, giving the fabric a modern appeal.
1 Week: Loom Setting
1 Week: Weaving
1 Week: Washing & Finishing of the Jamdani cloth
SOFT JAMDANI FABRIC
Our Jamdani fabrics are made of high-quality cotton thread, which is spun from the finest quality cotton. The fabric has a soft feel and a luxurious look.
However of you wish to make it even softer, just soak the muslin jamdanis in cold water for 30-40 minutes. Then squeeze excess water out of it and rinse with running water. Steam iron the fabric to get rid of any wrinkles or creases.