Chikankari embroidery is artistic work of embroidery done with white untwisted yarn with the assistance of a needle on a fine plain fabric.
The material used is normally plain white, pink, maroon, shades of green and so on so that the embroidery work is seen. Previously chikankari was done on fine white cotton fabric called muslin or mulmul, however with decrease of accessibility of material, slowly the work was started being done on different fabrics like Organdie, Cotton and Silk, Voil, Chiffon, Lenin, Rubia, Khadi, Handloom fabric, Terry Cotton, Polyester, Georgette, Terry voil.
Amid 17th and 18th century, this artistic embroidery “Chikankari” was manufactured in Dhaka, which was later, conveyed to Lucknow from East Bengal by the Nawabs of Awadh. Chikankari prospered and got its due recognition under the support of the leaders of Awadh. A few historians opine, that Chikan is a Persian art. The word “Chikan” is most likely to be derived from a Persian word “Chikin” or “Chikeen” which implies a sort of embroidered fabric.
This is a home based activity which is basically performed by ladies artisans and specialists.
Firstly, motifs are printed on the fabric with washable colours with the help of blocks of different designs , and then different type of Chikankari embroideries are done on fabric. Because of the number of stitching styles included in Chikankari, it is guaranteed to be one of its kind hand embroidery that is difficult to copy. Chikan embroidery has around thirty-two unique stitches. These stitches have been given different names.
Amid British rule this piece of an art suffered intensely. The import of super fine low valued factory textile from England brought down the trade. Numerous artists stayed in the homes of artisans and the individuals those who were fond of this art only carried out the work. This bought an exploitation came poor chikan workers. However after Independence efforts to restore the chikan industry were launched
Today thousands of individuals are getting their employment from this art. Then again, these artisans have some issues of finance, innovation and ability upgrade, manufacturing and promoting of the item which again makes the business people and specialists powerless in this manner additionally leaving chikankari vulnerable.