Lehriya from Rajasthan•
Posted on July 29 2014
Lehriya is a tie n dye technique practiced in Rajasthan, India. The name Lehriya is derived from the word lehar, which stand for waves in Hindi. The print of the Sares is in waves giving it the name lehriya. These lehariya sarees are worn on special occasions such as Diwali and Teej. These sarees are the best produced sarees in India. Single color sarees with odhnis (duppatta) are also very regular.
Coming from Rajasthan, a place rich in art and craft is Lehriya. We are well aware of this print and probably own one, be it in Ssarees, or on some dress. Lehriya is a popular tie and dye technique that has made a mark from itself and has been a favourite of many women around the country.
The word lehriya is derived from The hindi word lehar, which means waves in English. The print is a zigzag pattern of stripes, depicting the visual of the flow of water.
Writing about textile crafts for The Hindu, Mita Kapur asserts: "The famous leheriya (zigzag pattern of irregular colour stripes) is a visual invocation of the flow of water at the same time painstakingly showing the depths of indigo after multiple mud-resistant and dyeing processes. No small wonder that the blues in leheriya attract the eyes instinctively."
Leheria dyeing is done on thin cotton or silk cloth, usually in lengths appropriate for turbans or sarees. According to World Textiles: A Visual Guide to Traditional Techniques, the fabric is "rolled diagonally from one corner to the opposite selvedge, and then tied at the required intervals and dyed". Wave patterns result from fanlike folds made before dyeing. Traditional leheria employs natural dyes and multiple washes and uses indigo or alizarin during the final stage of preparation.
An additional dyeing using the leheria technique produces mothara. In the making of mothara, the original resists are removed and the fabric is re-rolled and tied along the opposite diagonal. This results in a checkered pattern with small undyed areas occurring at regular intervals. The undyed areas are about the size of a lentil, hence the name mothara (moth means lentil in Hindi).
Leheria turbans were a standard part of male business attire in Rajasthan during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Leheria is still produced in Jodhpur, Jaipur, Udaipur, and Nathdwara. It is offered for sale with most of its resist ties still in place as proof of authenticity, with a small portion of fabric unrolled to display its pattern.
This tie and dye technique, amongst the many in India, traces its roots back to 5000 years.
Lehriya is also popular amongst a lot of Indian designers and has been used for designer collection by designers.
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