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Introducing Dhaaga & Co.

A vision, a wonder, a tale told through its miraculous monuments, delectable food, and mesmerizing crafts; Lucknow is a city royal enough to marvel at! Birthed in the Mughal era, Chikankari has been at the core of Lucknow’s rich, regal heritage.

Translating to the word embroidery, Chikankari is a unique, beautiful craft involving delicate artistic embroidery work on an array of textured cloths. Creating countless ensembles with intricate work encompassed within 36 magical stitches, the craft is truly one of a kind.

A lover of the art form, Dhaaga & Co. came into its being with its founder, Savnit Arora Gurnani’s passion to give Chikankari; the unsung hero its own place in the fashion community, whilst celebrating the artisans bringing the craft to life.

Celebrating the beautiful Awadhi art form, Chikankari, Dhaaga & Co. is set to be the first community of Chikankari producers, designers & immaculate goods in the digital space.

A timeless romance between art and tradition, Dhaaga & Co. is for the woman musing multi- folds of art, for the girl collecting ensembles telling a story in each stitch, or simply for the lover of this heritage masterpiece called Chikankari.

We at Dhaaga & Co. together with our founder, Savnit, bring must-have, majestic heirloom pieces on a single accessible platform and are sure to be a befitting choice for all women.

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Meet Our Founder

With an edge over other platforms, spearheading the styling & marketing front at Dhaaga is the accomplished Savnit Arora Gurnani. She is the former Fashion assistant at Femina India and a creative contributor across apparel brands in Delhi, Mumbai and Lucknow, having experience in all aspects of fashion styling, design, and marketing.

Her style advocacy and passion for every project she undertakes is in itself a testament of the brand’s intent to curate the best of Prêt & Couture fashion, sourced and styled from across her city of Nawab!

Our Purpose

Dhaaga & Co. aspires to form the world’s first Chikankari community, with a goal to bring recognition for the craft and its workers on a large scale. With a deeply engraved passion for the art, our purpose lies in giving the rightful artists- the Chikankari artisans their dues. Dhaaga as it’s core brand value would seek to share profits with it’s artisans, creating for them an enriching and fulfilling life with Dhaaga’s Artisan Fund.

 
 

Our Process

Dhaaga & Co. aspires to form the world’s first Chikankari community, with a goal to bring recognition for the craft and its workers on a large scale. With a deeply engraved passion for the art, our purpose lies in giving the rightful artists- the Chikankari artisans their dues. Dhaaga as it’s core brand value would seek to share profits with it’s artisans, creating for them an enriching and fulfilling life with Dhaaga’s Artisan Fund.

Block Priniting

The semi-stitched cloth is spread upon a flat table, following which designs are printed on with blocks using fugitive colours. The blocks are then doused in trays of colour, placed upon the fabric, and firmly banged upon with the printers fists- as the process is repeated as the worker moves along the fabric.

Embroidery Work

Skillful hands then use their finessed craft to embroider patterns and designs upon the printed designs, giving life to the beautiful Chikankari work. Artisans specialising in several kinds of stitching add their charm to the finished product.

Washing Cloths

Once the garment is ready with the former steps, it is then washed to remove the fugitive colour of the block print, shedding light on its flawless intricacies.

Finishing Work

The final steps entail fixing any leftover flaws, adding finishing touches to the garment, clipping off any extra threads that may be present on the garment, and so on.

Our Heritage

  • 3rd century BC
    Ajanta’s rock painting showed the first glimpse of Chikankari embroidery through its patterns and motifs.
  • 5th Century BC
    Megasthenes penned anecdotes on the pristine ‘white-flowered muslin’ adorned by courtiers in the reign of Chandragupta Maurya; a true depiction of rich textured, colourless sophistication.
  • 16th & 17th Century
    Said to be introduced in the Mughal courts by Noor Jahan, the intricate craft flourished in the Mughal courts throughout the 16th century. By the 17th century as the skilled artisans scattered across, the craft nestled its way into Awadh forming its Lucknowi roots. Kurta Pajamas, Achkans, Topis, and other such garments came to the forefront.
  • 18th Century and 19th century
    The British and Nawabi rule took under their wing the flourishing craft in the 18th century; while the 19th century saw their exit yet the Chikan culture remained unscathed. Seeped so seamlessly into the soul of Lucknow, the 19th century was termed the golden period for Chikankari, giving rise to lehengas, kurtas, scarves, cloths, odhnis, and much more!
  • 2000’s to date
    Then came the designers and the fusion wear, wherein Chikankari made its way into stunning high-end designer collections and foreign markets alike. A craft to be celebrated, Chikankari continues to shine through as an industry of its own, paving the way to newer heights. Lucknow got the GI Mark for chikankari in December 2008. The government of Uttar Pradesh can now initiate legal action against manufacturers producing chikan anywhere outside Lucknow and its periphery.

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