Saddle Cloths emberoidery

These are some examples of the freeform embroidery our Gujjar Bakarwal women do at the project. The motifs and stitches are an amalgamation of the various cultures they have been exposed to during their centuries old migration from Greece, through Persia, Turkmenistan, Swat valley, Gujarat and then upwards to Kashmir right up to Uzbekistan and back now.

Some historians claim they are descendants of the Hepthalites and their Khanate at one time covered most of West Asia and east Europe as this map suggests. The Gurjar rashtra was the biggest kingdom in India.

We’ve been doing some patchwork research on our own from sources on the internet, books and interviews and here is a rough map we have come up with of the possible route this clan have travelled since 5th Century AD. The J&K Tribal research and cultural Foundation has a fairly extensive document on this community.

 

 

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