The Art of Suzani

Traditional making is something we are really passionate about, the art of a handmade throw or pillow turns it from just a household item to a special treasure. Lola is always hunting for these special treasures and we have a new collection of stunning Suzani throws and pillows
“Suzani” means needlework, coming from the Persian ‘Suzan’ which means needle. The art of making such textiles in Iran is called Suzandozi (needlework). In the nineteenth century, Uzbek women produced fabulous embroidered hangings, bed covers, wrapping cloths, table covers, and prayer mats for their households and their daughters’ dowries.  Suzanis usually have a cotton fabric base, we have been able to source a number of high quality weavings where the base is made from silk and embroidery threads are also silk.

Two traditional stitches are used in a majority of the pieces: primarily basma stitch, sometimes called Bukhara couching, and less often, chain stitch. With the basma stitch, long strands are first laid across the fabric surface. Then these are secured with short couching stitches that are normally aligned diagonally. Chain stitch is normally done with a fine tambour hook that’s much like a tiny crochet hook. A suzani may be worked entirely with chain stitch, or the technique may be combined with basma couching. Chain stitch is most often used for outlining couched areas or for producing delicate linear elements and fine details. Popular design motifs include sun and moon disks, flowers (especially tulips, carnations, and irises), leaves and vines, fruits (especially pomegranates), and occasional fish and birds. 
All the amazing work that the artisans put into these elaborate pieces shows in every stitch and we are just obsessed. Our lovely Suanis come from  Bukhara, in Uzbekistan. The pictures featured in the blog are from their personal museum of textiles that they have created and some pictures of the natural materials they use.

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