Embroidery is the art of forming beautiful intricate designs and motifs on fabrics with different colored threads. One of the most famous forms of embroidery is the Punjabi embroidery. The traditional embroidery of Punjab is known as Phulkari. The name itself means growing of flowers. Thus, the motifs and patterns of Phulkari essentially contain floral designs and motifs. Bright color combinations are used for the floral patterns and they can be seen in almost all traditional attire.
Phulkari, an embroidery technique from the Punjab in India and Pakistan literally means flower working, which was at one time used as the word for embroidery, but in time the word “Phulkari” became restricted to embroidered shawls and head scarfs. Simple and sparsely embroidered odini (head scarfs) and shawls, made for everyday use, are calledPhulkaris, whereas garments that cover the entire body, made for special and ceremonial occasions, are known as Baghs ("garden").
The Princely state of Patiala is known for its handicrafts, juttis and parandies. And now the phulkari embroidered suits, stitched in quintessential Patialvi style is fast catching up in in popularity in India and among the Non Resident Indian Punjabis. Carried out traditionally by women in the rural areas of Punjab, the intricacy and range of design and detail that Phulkari offers invites large number of craft lovers to Patiala. A big hit with the NRIs, phulkari is fast catching up with the foreigners as well, who do not forget to take one during their visit back home. It is not for nothing, that connoisseurs, of this exquisite beautiful handicraft have described Patiala a paradise for the choicest hand-embroidered Phulkari suits.