Evolution of Zardozi
A Golden Craft
This art has evolved from the court tradition to more utilitarian and socio-religious craft. With changing time it has again evolved by using plastic beading and other western materials.
This art as a handicraft is an enviable possession of our national heritage that contributes substantially to the Indian economy.
The government, non-government organizations, and individuals play a vital role in uplifting, preserving & reviving the craft & craftsmen. Every craftsman involved in this has a story to narrate about the beginnings of this craft and their cluster.
This industry was more unorganized but since the time craftsmen started collaborating with designers & brands has made them shift from unorganized sector to more organized and formal sector.
For such switch, there are a lot of factors involved in it, such as quality of entrepreneurship, workers productivity, domestic and export market, quality product and terms of trade.
Post strong economic reforms like the advent of GST & demonetization, the export-import chains got heavily hampered. Leading to a single channel flow of material and money.
The major problems faced by the craftsmen & entrepreneurs were lack of finance, sourcing of matching threads & accessories etc. Use of western material has reduced this problem to a major extent, making these factors a strong point for the usage of plastic & other western materials.
The only darker side of this craft is the workshop where the karigars works with a room with sufficient lighting, hardly any ventilation and just enough space for the karigars to be seated on the floor.]
Talking about the craft, the principal product used for zardozi is ‘zari’. The advent of western material age has made the prices go even more down and made this high-end craft affordable for lower-income people.
The Indian market for zardozi is dictated mainly by occasions & festivals. Wedding trousseau is the best example for this, where people get their whole chunk of people wears coordinated outfits.
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Involvement of NGO’s in this craft
The presence of voluntary bodies working towards the development of Zardosi craft. There are trusts like Draupadi Dream Trust that is training needy people to create beautify Zardozi artforms for earning their basic livelihood. Zardozi has reflected the journey of this craft catering to the different tastes of people. Involvement of cult craftsmen with designers like Aman Mathur is a clear example of the variation of this art form according to the present day tastes and need in the market. This has also changed with the changing economic arrangements and governmental involvement with the craft or the industry at large.
This craft which was exclusive to the royal clientele has now evolved as a major item of trade. The royal Lucknowi gentry still finds the need of having the real, acoustic and heavy embroidered attire, irrespective of the preparation time and cost/price involved in it. The setback has come post the introduction of machine/ surat embroidery techniques and has the people involved more reluctant to the economic affordability of the art.
The availability of a variety of raw material has played the key role in producing executive work. Western material usage has brought down the costing and turnaround time after production.Involvement of NGO’s in this craft Click To Tweet