Panja Durrie weaving – Panja weaving is forming an important part in Indians glorious weaving tradition. It is used for making durries. It is like a light woven rugs which is used as floor covering. The weaving form got a name from metallic claw like tool? Panja in local dialect. It is uses to beat and set the threads in warp. These durries are woven and not knotted, which make them light and usable on both sides.
There are wide variety of Durries available depending on size, pattern and material. The smallest one is ranging 12 by 12 inches. They are used as table mats to keep flower vases. Moderate Size durries are used for large gatherings like political, social gathering. They were used as floor coverings. As they are attractive and intricate patterns, they are also used as wall hangings. Due to low cost and ease of maintenance, durries do get get infected by tests and insects like silver fish. Cotton durries help in keeping warm during winters, while it gives cooling effect during summers.
In the past, durries had been earlier dismissed as poor man’s carpet. With time, it became popular due to its abstract prints and contemporary design appeal. Since woven, these durries have an advantage of being reversible, which enhances its functionality. They are light in weight and its weaving method creates better flexibility and more varied designs.
There are two techniques for making durries.
There are two techniques for making durries –
Punjab technique – require simpler set up
Traditional pit loom – complex
Drawing patterns on walls and home floors believed to be powerful religious charm. This would help to remove evil spirits and energies from their homes. These patterns are drawn as prayer to invoke deities and ask for protection from negative energies. Merging of religious beliefs systems and love of art and decoration led to the rise of intricate art where home has become a canvas. These floor decorations made as part of religious festivals and known by different names such as Angola, Kola.
Design -The designs are usually geometric in design. There are wide range of designs which exists that contain aspirations from local architecture, geometric variations, flora and fauna. There are different variations, patterns, peacocks, tree of life, hunting scenes are the most common designs in durries. One can see the popular tales and stories being depicted in durries. The durries of Madhya Pradesh have pinkish white background with patterns in bright color lines. The skill of craftsmen is judged by level of complexity in moulds. One can see the design as popular motifs.
This craft profession is in declining phase. With many craftsman families moving to profitable professions due to stable income. Owing to poor state of this trade, families who are traditionally involved in this trade prefer to get their children employed in other trades that pay better. This has reduced the number of durries looms. Due to lack of demand, many small mills who used to provide curries thread have closed down. The process is slow and it is now getting revived.