Bostani Kantha

This type of embroidery from West Bengal is generically called ‘kantha’ embroidery, and is traditionally made of worn-out cotton saris and dhoti.

Coloured threads were extracted from the borders of the old saris to provide coloured areas, although in recent times specially purchased coloured threads are used. Kanthas are made up of several layers of cotton cloth, stitched together by designs in simple running stitch, and designs are added using pattern-darning stitch, satin-stitch and button-hole stitch. Kanthas are used for a multitude of household functions: the small size and square format of this one suggests that it was either an all-purpose wrapper ‘bostani’. Biswa Bangla has reinterpreted this exquisite craft in a contemporary way.