Beadwork is an age-old art form from Gujarat. Unlike many handicrafts that were a means of livelihood for predominantly male craftsmen, traditionally beadwork was primarily a hobby that the women of the house engaged in.
Like the name suggests, little glass beads are used to create tapestries. Artists painstakingly sow together row upon row of beads. Precise calculations are used to create beautiful, geometric designs. The motifs range from flowers and animals to traditional symbols like the swastik and 'kalash', a brass bowl with mango leaves and a coconut used during ceremonies. Featured below is a fan, where the geometric pattern is perfectly arranged around a circle, each triangle containing the same number of beads as the others. Beadwork is used to make bags, torans (a decorative strip that hangs across the top of the door), boxes, caps and belts.
Is enough being done to ensure demand for this art form? For this unique Indian art form to survive,it needs to be applied to a larger variety of our day-to-day life. Do you have suggestions for us? Go ahead and tell us what other beadwork items you'd like to see.