hi every one,
My last blog made me realize that I really enjoy writing on what I feel passionate about. And that’s totallybananas unleashed. Its nice being able to write about why I love all the products that I have featured on the website. As you all are aware, each and every Item is hand made, hand woven and hand embroidered or hand painted..
And my reasons for doing this, and creating the website www.totallybananas.nl is for all those sweet innocent children who are found on the streets, begging for food, and who do not have a shot at a decent life, unless we all focus and decide to do something together. Its a huge issue, and its a issue that needs to be attended to as soon as possible.
Looking at those faces made me realize that I need to do my bit as well. Having two lovely kids of my own I feel so much sorrow that so many children have to undergo such a terrible time when its actually not necessary to do so. I mean, if every one decided to pitch in and do their bit, no child would ever have to go hungry or lack a warm safe place to sleep , or to roam the streets, when they could be studying and learning or doing something positive to make their life a better one.They deserve it as much as any other child in this world belonging to you or me.
This said, I would now like to talk about another one of the products that I have featured on my website.
JAIPURI QUILTS. Perhaps many of you are not even aware of what a jaipuri quilt is, and you are wondering right this very minute is she talking about ? Well, these are very fine, thin quilts which are made out of pure cotton and the fabrics are block printed by hand with very traditional Rajasthani prints , the designs, which are usually passed down from family to family.
Jaipuri Quilts are beautifully colored and hand dyed as is the tradition in Rajasthan. Rajasthani people are always dressed in very colorful clothes, and you can see the women in their gorgeous beautifully colored skirts and blouses which are known as Lehngas and cholis.(Blouses) Rajasthan is also very famous for the silver jewelry , as I am sure that many of you are aware of all over the world.
Its winter and that time of the year again,
the time to cuddle up under a quilt. An interesting book by the hand and a nice hot cup of coffee or tea , sitting next to you on the table. You are all wrapped up in a soft warm cocoon , light as a feather, which doesn’t weigh you down as a normal quilt usually would .These special quilts use high quality cotton as stuffing. Of course as in all things you get different qualities suited to every pocket.
In the rural areas of Rajasthan there is a unique way of making quilts. It is called a ‘godadi’ and is made from old, torn, faded pieces of fabrics like the dhoti, saree, dupatta, lehnga or skirts. Such quilts are also common in the drier parts of Maharashtra and Karnataka. The warmth of layers of fabric softened with use can be compared to the most exclusive and
expensive pure wool blankets. Smaller and thinner ‘godadis’ are very commonly used for newborn babies. Soft and easy to wash, these quilts are popular among urban families too. The quilting material has an inner lining of cotton. Ralli quilts are a traditional feature of north India and Pakistan and are now beginning to gain international recognition and popularity. The name “ralli” is thought to be derived from the word “ralannu,” a verb that means to mix, join, or connect. Ralli quilts are made in Rajasthan in India ,and in Sindh in Pakistan. Ralli is prepared by using multi-coloured pieces of cloth stitched together in attractive designs. Its colour combinations and unique patterns speak for the aesthetic sense of its creator. As is typical of rallis, patchwork adorns the edge of the piece, and there is embroidery on the back. Some of the fabrics are indigo-dyed. The other kind of ralli quilts is sami ralli, used by wayfarers like the swamis, jogis and gypsies. These types of ralli quilts are popular due to their many colours and extensive hand stitching. But, if you ask a real connoisseur of quilts, he would outright vote for the famous genuine Jaipuri Razai (quilt) and if you buy this masterpiece, you will know what it is to roll up in a heavenly soft cloud. Incredibly soft and light, and warm too, that is a Jaipuri Razai for you. Nobody quite knows when and how this mini marvel came into being. Why did Rajasthan alone become the home of this unique form of winter covering when quilts were common all over north India? What is it that goes to make a Jaipuri razai superior to others? Do they put in a special variety of cotton? The answer to that mystery lies in the carding. They card away all the dross from the cotton, which they buy just when the fresh crop comes in. According to some of the master craftsmen of Razai bazaar in Jaipur their families have been carders for generations. A kilo of cotton weighs not more than 100 grams after a whole week of carding. A 100 gram Jaipuri quilt is comparable with any five kilogram ordinary cotton quilt in terms of warmth. But they create even lighter quilts weighing not more than 50 grams by carding the cotton over and over again. These special quilts are done according to customer orders and take almost three months to complete. The lighter the quilt, the more evenly it is filled and you will find it all the warmer and more comfortable. There are three varieties of Jaipuri quilts in the market namely – Cotton, Velvet and Silk, available in different price ranges to suit every pocket. Quilting is the sole purview of women, and mainly three or four standard patterns have been in vogue for as long as anyone can remember. Time was when these quilts were made only for royalty from the gossamer light, world famous ‘Dhake ki malmal’. The cloth for the Jaipuri razais, a soft quality voile, mainly comes from Mumbai . A single quilt takes six meters and a double quilt eleven meters of cloth. The quilt makers get the material printed at Sanganer . The rest is hard work. Gol (concentric circles), phool (flowers), paan (the betel leaf) and lahariya (vertical stripes zigzagging down the face of the quilt) are the most common patterns in use. Two women work together on one quilt and between them they manage roughly two quilts a day, depending on the complexity of the design. Every winter, the market for Jaipuri quilts expands so much that many people get the chance of employment. Velvet quilts are a new
entry in the market.. In Sanganeri print, Tye and dye, and Makhmali (velvet) fabrics these products are a regular buy in the international markets. In addition to the regular markets like Europe and America, new markets like South Africa and Japan are also emerging as potential customers.
Of course me, being me, each time I visit Jaipur I have to buy a couple of the quilts and I must say that by now I have quite the collection of Jaipuri quiltsI have such a facination for these quilts that when I was running my bed and breakfast in Pokhara, Nepal, I had these quilts in each and every room in place of the normal humdrum bed spreads , and people never failed to compliment me on the decor and color and how comfortable the rooms looked.
Yes, I used to own a hotel and thats another story altogether and I promise to tell you more next time. You guys should try a Jaipuri quilt . I can guarantee that you will get as addicted as I am to these beautiful jewels and that you will not be disappointed .They come in a wide variety of fabrics , in different sizes from single to king size and can actually be rolled up to fit in a small back pack.’ I kid you not.’
I hope , with this, that I’ve made you a little bit curious, and wanting to check out the different types of Jaipuri quilts or razais as they are known in hindi, and the wish to own your very own soft blanket of cloud.
On this note I take leave and say namaste. Stay warm and enjoy a hot cup of what ever you fancy .
Love you all, be safe.