Tuesday, June 3

Folk textiles - Kaudi - a hand stitched patchwork quilt

While doing chores in the neighbourhood I spied these two patchwork kaudis or quilts spread out on a low wall.   

They must belong to families of migrant construction workers building a house close by. The quilts are put out to air in the sun.   
The women have pieced together old sarees, bits and pieces from other old clothing and probably cutting waste from the local tailor. 
 They usually have two or more layers of fabric. Running stitch done with white thread holds the layers of fabric together.
Neat lines of running stitch are worked in concentric rectangles. At the corners the stitches are a bit more haphazard,I wonder why? Must find out.

 This ones has patches which must come from old sarees.The orange pieces of fabric have a border of paisleys in maroon, yellow and white. Old sarees made soft with wash and wear make soft kaudis.
 There's a hole in this one.Will it be patched to extend the use of the quilt?
The cotton is worn to shreds and there's just a tangle of cotton fibers held down for the time being with running stitch.

Read more about kaudi's here and about Kantha which is another folk textile and a thrift craft click here.
If you would like to buy a kaudi I'm selling kaudi throws at Studio Ebony in Whitefiled, Bangalore, if you would like to buy a kaudi.
Studio Ebony
  • Lake View Farm, Varthur Main Road, 
  • Ramagondanahalli, WhiteField
  • Bangalore, India 560066
  • Open : Tue - Sun 10.30 -18.00

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Thread Born said...

What a great find! I'd love to see something like those quilts while walking down my street!

Margaret said...

I could sense the love in every stitch of those pieces. Comfort, too. Thank you. :-)

Gumbo Lily said...

What a beautiful and unexpected sight. Thinking of the hands who stitched through the scraps to give them another purpose.

Maya Sara Matthew said...

Julie I couldn't believe my luck when I spotted the two kaudis. You see more of them out in the sun in winter.
Yes, Margaret these pieces are very special. Each individual who uses the kaudi adds their story to it and it comes with bits of fabric patched together which have stories of their own.
@ Gumbo Lily - very thought provoking - hands stitching scraps to give them another purpose - anonymous but nuturing. I don't think they realise that they have created such a beautiful thing.

ANNE said...

µVery beautiful photos. thanks!
Clothes of love, work of love, colors of love!
Can I give this link in my blog with one photo?

ArtPropelled said...

What a treat to come across these quilts when you had a camera on hand!

Maya Sara Matthew said...

Hello Anne, I'm sorry its taken me so long to respond but I have been travelling.Yes you may post a link with a photograph on your blog.

Robyn - a camera is always on hand these days - thanks to mobile phones.It's the most used feature on my phone.

Vasudha Somayaji said...

I have seen so many kaudis especially like u said near the houses of construction workers and they are so beautiful and colorful...

Unknown said...

I wonder how much is demand of these traditional quilts now a days? How likely one would want to have a piece of this stitched for themselves? I have read a lot about these quilts/Kaudis, they are hand stitched and are made of mother's old sarees and older clothes in the house. I want to know how much one piece will cost?