In an attempt to keep our content accurate and representative of evolving scholarship, we invite you to give feedback on any information in this article.

    This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


    ARTICLE

    Ashrafi

    Map Academy

    Articles are written collaboratively by the EIA editors. More information on our team, their individual bios, and our approach to writing can be found on our About pages. We also welcome feedback and all articles include a bibliography (see below).

    A motif embroidered in the shape of gold coin, associated with Banarasi and Chanderi textiles, ashrafi means “coins” in Persian and derives its shape and name from old gold sovereigns used in medieval India.

    Like most motifs used on the handwoven Chanderi fabric, the ashrafi is embroidered with needles on the fabric using the handloom. The circular motif is woven with metallic threads and spread all over the fabric in a floral pattern as ashrafi booti. This gilded brocade design is a marked feature of the Chanderi silk-cotton textiles. In Chanderi fabric the lightweight and sheer texture of silk-cotton was complemented with the golden ashrafis traditionally done with a zari thread. While popularised with Chanderi, the ashrafi is also significantly embroidered on Banarasi textiles; most distinctly red silk embellished with ashrafis of pure gold zari.

    Now, since increasingly mass-produced, the ashrafi booti is embroidered with regular threads and coated with gold, silver and copper dust for its characteristic metallic sheen. Besides textiles, the motif also appears in handicraft works such as Bidriware.

     

     
    Bibliography

    Chakraborty, Sulagna. “Chanderi Sarees: A Look at the History and Evolution of These Royal Weaves.” Craftsvilla, January 17, 2017. https://www.craftsvilla.com/blog/chanderi-sarees-the-process-of-weaving-a-chanderi/

    “Indian Textiles: Arts & Crafts of India.” Culturopedia. August 11, 2021. Accessed, August 11, 2021. https://www.culturopedia.com/textiles/

    “Rich and Rare Textiles.” in Banarasi Saree and Textiles. Google Arts and Culture. Accessed, August 11, 2021. https://artsandculture.google.com/exhibit/banarasi-sarees-and-textiles-dastkari-haat-samiti/GwLyn7fQMm9ELA?hl=en

    Feedback
     
    Related Content
    loading