Thursday, 7 March 2013

Bandhani = Bandana or Bandannoes

Bandhani (there are several similar spellings) means to tie or dye tie. Bandhani is in fact an ancient form of tie dyeing where spot of material are bound or wound with thread then dyed to produce a series of white spots in a variety of designs. This art form was widely used in the east, but in the late 17th century and early 18th century, Bandhani was exported to the New World in the form of large handkerchiefs. From the name Bandhani, came the name Bandana or Bandanna or Bandannoe.
The most common colours seem to have been black and red, but I can find little information relating to the 17th and 18th centuries. Patterns are also unknown to me, though I have read that somewhere there are examples found in tombs. This form of tie dyeing was performed on cotton, silk and wool fabrics. Here below are the designs and patterns that I think are most likely to have been available in the period 1680 to 1760.

 These are original copies made in Manchester England in 1750ad.
This shows some fabric bound and tied ready for dyeing.

Bandhani in ajanta painting.

Bibliography: The Worldwide History Of Dress By Patricia Rieff Anawalt

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