Hidden Gems - What is a Phulkari Chunni?
Updated: Mar 2, 2021
Deo Deco London is super excited to be apart of the Asian Weddings & Celebrations
Pop up Bazaar.
To celebrate this weekend of virtual shopping Deo Deco is collaborating with a fantastic store called Chunni London.
For those that don't know, a chunni, according to the Cambridge dictionary, is described as 'a long scarf that some South Asian women wear around their head and shoulders'.
The online store sells a vast range of chunni's of different colors, and materials.
In fact a chunni to me has always been a reliable item of clothing / accessory, that's just been in my wardrobe waiting patiently for a wedding, party or if unlucky a funeral to attend. It's an item in my wardrobe I must admit I have never really given much thought to.
However saying that, the most recent one I did purchase with intention was a beautiful phulkari chunni for a wedding. But yet again I'd never really taken the time to understand why this type of chunni was different from the rest, until now.
The phulkari chunni according to my research is the traditional form of embroidery of Punjab. The word comes from two words 'phul' meaning flower and 'kari' meaning work. It is categorized into three types of design - Phaulkari, Bagh and Chop, each offering the wearer a different look. It's history dates back to the 15th century and is even mentioned in the Sikh holy book, the Guru Granth Sahib.
Traditionally this type of chunni is said to be handmade by relatives and gifted to welcome a newborn. It is also gifted to brides, and said to be a symbol of happiness and prosperity.
Groups of women would gather in the long summer afternoons, at a gathering called 'Trijan'.
What makes this really special is the spinning of cotton, weaving and embroidery, was all hand crafted at home. Reading this puts a smile on my face, as I love the community spirit. I can imagine these ladies having the best time with friends, singing and dancing.
What I didn’t know was that this beautiful craft is celebrated and preserved at the Punjab Agricultural University Museum. The Museum holds a number of competitions, lectures, demonstrations and exhibitions promoting this historic craft.
*Competition ends on 7th March and the lucky winner will be announced on 8th March*
If you would like to find out more, do go and visit Chunni London’s website to view more vibrant beautiful chunni’s: www.chunnilondon.com