Amazing “Embroidered” Long Shawl


Perhaps crafted around 1860 or so this spectacular long shawl is truly a work of love and devotion by a single master craftsman whose painstaking efforts had to have taken him no less than ten years to complete this wonder. Why the quotation marks? Because in reality the whole shawl was done in Kashmir’s world famous needlepoint stitch. One often sees this work on early plain-field long shawls with kunj botehs, or needleworked embellishments in each of the four corners of the shawl; work so fine as to boggle the imagination. This is the same needlepoint stitch employed on the V&A well-known map shawl, as well. And because the stitching also follows a twill weave look, they look like they’ve been kani woven. But to discover a large, long shawl with this kind of work is unheard of. The design, obviously based on a French Jacquard pattern, is done to absolute perfection. The colors are sparkling and the choice of colors have created an overall shimmering hue as far as the eye can see. Not a thread is out of line. Even on the back everything is so perfectly nipped and tucked that one wonders how this could be possible.