Punjabis are well known for food, clothes and fun in the world. Their culture and heritage are rich. Though Punjab is famous for many things like Golden Temple in Amritsar, Agricultural produce and open heartedness of its residents yet it is also famous for its handicrafts, in the world.
The most popular handicraft of Punjab is Phulkari – a women’s wear.
Phulkari depicts the rich culture of Punjab. Phulkari making is an ancient art-a true folk art. It can also be termed as a domestic art – an art of villages.
In the olden day, the main motive of phulkari was for marriages. It used to be prepared by the family women for their own or for the other members of family.
In the marriages brides were given dozens of different types of phulkari, in dowry. It maintained the status of the family.
Origin of phulkari dates back to 15th century. But in the absence of evidence and documentation it cannot be confirmed. One more theory works that the Jat tribes of East Punjab, basically peasants, migrated from Central Asia were the pioneers of this art.
The theory is believable because bibi Nanki, sister of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, first Sikh guru, used to give embroidered handkerchiefs to her brother.
One more theory works that it had migrated from Persian art where it was known as ‘gulkari’. Gul means flower and kari means work. Phulkari has the same meaning. Bagh is also one form of phulkari.