Andhra Pradesh Tourism Arts & Crafts

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About Andhra Pradesh >Arts & Crafts  


In keeping with the rich traditions of the State, the people of Andhra Pradesh have patronised a host of arts and crafts that not only enrich the milieu but earn the artisans a decent livelihood. KalamkariBidriNirmal paintings, fascinating weaves from Pochampalli, GadwalVenkatagiri and a number of other centres have earned a name all over the world.

The State is well known for its handlooms and textiles and its silk sarees are among the best produced in the country. The people of the State too have been patrons of the arts and crafts and this has resulted in the traditions being kept alive through the ages.

It is not only such exclusive and delicate material as silk that the artisans of Andhra Pradesh deal in, but metalwarecarpetswood and stone carvingtoo. From the exquisite silver filigree and brass and sheet metalware, artisans of Andhra Pradesh strive to bring out the best and it is sheer magic when they get down to producing their ware.

Kalamkari, using a quill (kalam) and vegetable dyes, is an art found nowhere else but in and around Machilipatnam and Srikalahasti of the State. While the Srikalahasti style is to draw outlines with a pen or quill and fill in the colours through a wax process, the Machilipatnam practice is to use wooden blocks carved into designs for printing.

All dyes and colours are natural and the painstaking process of Kalamkari printing on fabric goes through as many as a dozen stages. 

Wall hangings come in another style from Siddipet in Medak district. This method, known as Batik, utilises the ‘cold’ process involving wax to create graphic designs and figures. Batik cloth also comes in the form of dress material, scarves and even sarees.

Cherial Scroll paintings done on cloth in earth colours is one of the traditional crafts practised mainly at Cherial in Warangal district. Painted in freestyle and depicting mythological stories, they are used as visual aids, and have attained great popularity as wall decorations.

Decorative hand-crocheted lace from Narsapur and Palakollu of West Godavari district adorns many a dining table in the form of mats. Curtains and bedspreads are some of the lacework produced here.

Utsav sarees is one of the best 
Pochampalli sarees shop where you can find exclusive collection of pochampalli sari, pochampally sarees and pochampalli cloths from south india for weddings and marriages for online shopping.In the 60's the all India handicrafts board assisted the weavers of Pochampalli to start weaving sarees. Silk weaving was also introduced by training two weavers in Banaras. Pochampalli, a small village, slowly captured the market for pochampulli textiles, ikat sarees and today the whole of Nalgonda district works on ikat weavers which can compare with the very best in single ikat wrap weaving.

Gadwal is known for its world famous handloom jari 
sarees ("Gadwal sarees"). The local weavers are talented enough to weave the 5.5 meters of saree fabric in such a way that it can be folded down to the size of a small match box. Gadwal Sarees have been very popular since the 1930s. These are cotton sarees with an attached silk border and silk pallow. 

Venkatagiri Town situated in the Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh – is famous for the cotton handloom sarees.   It has got it’s own unique weaving excellence and one need not compare with any other technique – whether it is hand woven or machine made.  Even today – once can specify and get a designer sarees for a price – and that will be made for only one person one time.  In fact in the earlier days – these weavers used to weave very few sarees for the Kings, and the return they get from them was sufficient for whole of the year.

Sheets of Artistry 
Metalware is another area in which the artisan of Andhra Pradesh excels. Be it the brass sheet metal of Pembarti in Warangal district, the silver filigree of Karimnagar, the Bidriware of Hyderabad or the bronze castings in Chittoor and East Godavari district, the artistry stands out to international acclaim and acceptance.

Bidriwork originated some three centuries ago at Bidar, which was part of the erstwhile Hyderabad State. Alloys are used in moulds to create shapes and the dark metal is then inlaid with designs using silver thread. Decorative pieces, bangles, ashtrays, pen-stands, caskets, cufflinks and paper-cutters are some of the Bidriware manufactured in and around Hyderabad.

From sheet metal to wood, craftsmen vie with each other to produce delicate and intricate designs. Wood carving in Chittoor district is one of the oldest traditional crafts. The carvings depict scenes from mythology as well as figures of deities.

In other parts of the State, wood carving is done to make musical instruments and in places like in Vizianagaram town and in Nuzvid of Krishna district, such instruments as Veena and Tambura are carved out of a single block of wood.

The Simple Wood 
The soft wood available in many parts of the State is used in doll and toy making as well. The wooden figures are painted in bright colours that are pleasing to the eye.

Kondapalli is a small village in Krishna district and it is here that toys and dolls that have won international acclaim are made. The simple-looking dolls depict the typical rural Indian life. Kondapalli dolls take the shape of humansbirdsanimals and fruits.

The craftsmen of Nirmal too take advantage of the locally-available soft wood to carve brightly coloured vegetablesfruits and animals. Wooden dolls are made of the soft Poniki or Ankudu wood and Etikoppaka in Visakhapatnam district is another centre that makes exquisite dolls with a rustic touch.

Weaving Magic 
An area that Andhra Pradesh excels in is Sarees. Silk and cotton and a mixture of both are used to create alluring weaves and designs. Pochampalli,GadwalVenkatagiriNarayanpet and Chirala are some of the places where some of the world’s best sarees are woven.

Among the cottons, Narayanpet and Venkatagiri are preferred. Venkatagiri in Nellore district is known for its excellent cotton sarees with gold borders and large golden ‘pallav’. Narayanpet cotton sarees are less expensive and long-lasting. Silk sarees from Dhamavaram compare with the rich silks of Kancheepuram in broad borders with extensive gold ‘zari’ work.

In Pochampalli sarees of Nalgonda district adjoining Hyderabad, a unique method of tie-and-dye is used and this is known as ‘ikat’. Weavers in Andhra Pradesh have mastered the art of using cotton and silk alternately for warp (length) and weft (across). Known as ‘Himroo’, the art originated in Kashmir and was brought down south by Moghal rulers.

Pearls & Bangles 
Shopping for bangles in the narrow bazaars of the Old City of Hyderabad is an experience one should not miss. Lac is used to manually create designs on glass bangles and the array in which they come is mind boggling. More romantic are the names given to sets of bangles by the local sellers.

Hyderabad is also known as the ‘city of pearls’. Though not close to the sea, Hyderabad has had a flourishing trade in pearls, as the Golconda kingdom was famous for its diamonds. The processing of pearls has been skillfully mastered in Hyderabad in that craftsmen can sort, refine and polish pearls with ease.

Andhra Pradesh has turned out to be a gem of a State even in the sphere of arts and crafts.