Kashmir, the land of God has not only been blessed with bountiful natural beauty and resources but also with ample benevolence of rich and staggering art & culture. Kashmir has been the home of India’s best and unique forms of Art. From the delicacy of beyond compare embroidery to the paramount of its decor, Kashmiri Art has left us stunned and proud.
All around the globe, the lures of Kashmir are famous for their perfected craftsmanship and beyond belief intricacy. The amalgamation of motifs and techniques have been perfected over the years.
One of the art forms that run deep and dwell the most stunning composition of Kashmiri Art Form are the Carpets of Kashmir. These carpets are eminent and acclaimed for their bright, jewel-like color tones such as sapphire blue, ruby red, emerald green, aquamarine, amethyst, and ivory. Kashmiri carpets are handmade, hand-knotted, and are primarily made using pure wool, pure silk and occasionally wool and silk blends. These are available in wide-ranging colors, designs and sizes.
Origin of Carpets in Kashmir
Also acclaimed as “KAL BAFFI”, the origin of these hand-knotted trophies of art dates back to the 15th century after which it progressively attained a high degree of perfection. India got the exposure of the same in the late 15th century. Spinning and weaving had always existed in the veins of Kashmir but it was King Badshah who introduced the extended art of Carpets. King Badshah called artists from Persia to elaborate this art form and further teach the locals about this delicacy and fresh new technique. Kharkhanas (factories) were set in huge numbers and carpet product was given a driven pace.
But it was soon after Badshah’s reign that this particular art form bore a huge setback and almost died. It was only after when Mughal Emperor Jahangir came into power that this magic of hands was revived and brought to life once again in the land of Kashmir. And from that date, this art form has remained etched in the walls of Kashmir. This craftsmanship has gained its word through the walls of this world and sought as one of the best, most delicate and perfected forms of art. From the homes in India to the ones seven seas far, Kashmiri Carpets are a staple in refined elegant homes of the rich. It has become an entwined part of the decor for people who have a cultured and mystique taste of Art.
Most renowned Motifs/Design
- Qum Carpets : Also known as Ghom, Ghome, Qom. If you have a taste for geometrical patchy and organic designs, then this is your selection. Qum Carpets have geometrical designs running on them, the craftsmanship of this patchy geometric work is heavier and considerably more intricate in terms of embroidery and weaving. These carpets are also stunning investments as their prices keep increasing in due time.
- Gumbad Carpets: Floral, summer-y, bright, vivid are some adjectives that well define this type. Gumbad Carpets are symbolic and denotative of a typical blazing auroral Spring afternoon in Kashmir. This carpet grows out from the medallion where a flower is placed and unfolds into a spring tale, spreading the spring mist from Kashmir to your homes. The designs of these carpets are oft-times inspired by mosques and their crafted and jolted, huge pillars.
- Paisley Carpets: The paisley pattern traces its origin back to Persia and the Sassanid Empire around 221 AD. These carpets have a long lost relation with the Zoroastrian religion and were originally created as a motif for it. These carpets were first called “Boteh Jegheh”. Paisley carpets usually showcase tree-like designs and oriented with Cypress Tree, which is a Zoroastrian symbol of life and eternity.
Carpets have been an elemental and requisite part of art and culture not just in India but around the globe for a long long time now. Not just as a mere piece of decoration and furbelow, these carpets have been found as much more prolific and rewarding. From being used to provide comfort and warmth from cold floors to being used a mattress to relax and enjoy your favourite book on the floor to being used to prevent excessive sound from walking, these carpets have been proved as advantageous and dynamic.
In the modern world, Carpets have stepped out their way from private homes to industries and even in hotels as a great decor item. The true origin of the art of carpets from the best craftsmanship in Kashmir is still a delight for the rich but synthetically dyed and made carpets have traced their way into the market and are available for one and all.