The Traditional Art of Dhurrie Making

 

If you are looking to give your home a unique and an artistic touch, then this blog is for you! These days, it’s quite difficult to make your home stand out, mainly because there is a lack of authenticity due to mass production. When it comes to interior decoration, rugs and carpets play a great role in giving a unique character to your home. Generally, there are countless types of rugs and carpets out there. One of the most underlooked treasures is the dhurrie rug. Dhurrie rugs are native to India and are distinctive by a reversible flat weave and intricate designs and patterns. They are a one of a kind décor piece that, without a doubt, will not go unnoticed upon entering your home. Moreover, dhurries have a rich history and meaning behind them.  

What is a Dhurrie Rug? 

Generally, a dhurrie rug is a reversible flat woven rug without a pile and a backing, making them lightweight. Apart from that, due to their tight weave, they are also very durable. There are several types of dhurrie rugs and one of the most outstanding ones are the block printed dhurries. Typically, the rugs are woven using a loom, and the weaving style incorporates techniques that have been used for centuries. 

The History 

Dhurrie rugs originate from India and the surrounding regions like Burma, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. In the old days, dhurries were mainly used as floor mats as well as cover for beds, wall hangings and as mats during meditation and yoga. They were also a part of a girl’s dowry. These graphic flatweaves and block-printed patterns were made by women weavers and brides-to-be, trained in the art from a young age. Each design was handmade with unique patterns, representing the weaver’s own personal history along with religious or spiritual symbols. 

Technique 

Hand Block Printing is a very old traditional technique of dying and coloring fabric using wooden blocks practiced by the artisans of India since the 12th century. An intense precision and training that is passed from one generation to another results into these unique rugs designs.

Wooden blocks of complex patterns are carefully hand carved by skilled craftsmen. These blocks are then dipped in the colored dyes and stamped on the cloth. When the patterns have several colors in them, then each individual color requires a separate block. Precise and controlled positioning of these blocks on the handwoven cloth result into a beautiful art piece which adds to your home collection. Each rug is a masterpiece representing the artistic skills and imaginations of an artisan through the combination of the patterns and colors. As these rugs are handmade, it may not be as perfect as machine printed ones but that's where the beauty lies. 

Materials 

Dhurrie rugs can be made of several materials which may display different properties of strength, softness and texture. Some are smooth and cool to the touch while others are sumptuously soft and warm. Common material used for handwoven rugs include wool, silk and cotton, bamboo silk, banana leaf, mohair, merino and alpaca. Living Multicultural uses only cruelty free material for the production of all the products. Our current range of products are made from 100% cotton and we‘re planning to include more products in the near future that will also be made from other natural and animal cruelty-free materials such as jute and bamboo silk.

Regarding the preparation of the material, once a yarn is chosen there are myriad ways in which it can be knotted and woven, twisted and looped to produce a handmade rug. These differing techniques produce a range of textural surfaces, from fine and flat to chunky and shaggy.  

Artisans  

Dhurries are created manually by skilled artisans. Every step for the rug manufacturing is prepared by hand. It involves carving out different patterns on the wooden blocks, preparing natural dyes, loom weaving the rug and then printing the patterns on it. This making involves a lot of precision and is time consuming. This traditional handcraft is practiced for hundreds of years and is passed from one generation to another. Mostly, rug making is not just a profession, it’s an art practiced by the whole family where the craft is passed on from father to son and mother to daughter. For many families in the villages, it’s the only way to support themselves and to make a living. Rising popularity of the dhurrie rugs helps people in these rural areas to have a better and a more stable living. Living Multicultural values the fact that every order can help the artisan families to support their living as well as cherish this beautiful traditional art.