You must have come along or spotted at least one Shibori outfit that you fell in love with, without the knowledge of it being Shibori. Hailing from Japan, Shibori dates to the 8th century, so it's safe to say that it is as old as time.
A form of resist dyeing technique, the craft demands the artisans to stitch the base cloth in patterns and then dipping them in indigo and/or madder dyes. Silk and hemp were the two gold standards for Shibori in ancient times but as the wheel of time, spun cotton was next in line.
Shibori has made a prominent mark on the current fashion scenario. It has walked the most prestigious runways of the world and has caught the eye of Indian designers like- Rahul Singh, Anita Dongre, Bodice, Paramparik Karigar & more, with also extending to international designers like Vera Wang, Ralph Lauren and Eileen Fisher to name a few.
Shibori and the Indian Artisans
Resist dyeing is a global phenomenon but in the amalgamation of Indian craft- Bandhani and Japanese craft- Shibori brewed somewhere around in 1997 post-Shibori Symposium held at Ahmedabad. Since then the artisans have experimented with the fusion of the two and composed what we can call as Fabric Symphonies. The craft of Shibori has spread through the artistically rich states of Gujarat and Rajasthan with thousands of artisans churning out masterpiece after masterpiece. These designs flaunt intricate patterns of Shibori with the brilliant color scheme synonymous to Indian palette.
How to Spot Shibori
Identifying Shibori is pretty easy as compared to other textile crafts. Shibori displays a signature range of geometric and abstract ink-spot like patterns. The craft requires a set of definitive steps of tying and dyeing but can present varied breathtaking results when in the hands of skilled artisans.
Women Gracing the Ramp in Shibori Ensembles
These sheer numbers straight from the Lakme Fashion runway are an apt rendition of the traditional Shibori. Crafting this ancient vintage craft into designs of Kaftaan dresses, shirt & crop tops with puff sleeves, asymmetrical kurtas & more are fresh to the eye and look chic when styled minimally.
Although from the western runway, this take on the ancient craft is in perfect alignment of our desi couture. The ensemble features the signature Shibori pattern on what can pass of as an indo-western kurta with a Chinese collar. Paired with palazzo pants starring the stunning labyrinthine Shibori motifs, it is a must have for any fashionista.
Although Shibori is closely associated with indigo, it is not the only option when it comes down to dyeing the fabric. Madder is one of the most consistently used hues and has often graced the national and international fashion runways. With designers taking full advantage of their creative liberty the pattern can be seen in almost all the traditional as well as contemporary fabrics.
If you are a fashion fiend, then you must know Anna Wintour who is not only the editor but also the publisher for Vogue. In 2017 she was given the high honor of Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II for her contributions to fashion and journalism. She was one closely associated with the Met Gala 2018, which was a night to celebrate fashion. Here she was spotted wearing a dress that fuses the Scottish plaid with Shibori. The dress captures the ethereal nature of Shibori while also keeping the English roots of Anna alive. We’re sure it did cost a fortune, but you can also DIY it!
Talking about the international fashion landscape, it has accepted the art of resist dyeing with open arms and made it its own. If you like to strut on the edgier side of fashion, you might look out for some floor skimming velvet dresses, and some quilted overcoats, as they seem to be the style favorites for the designers of the fall collection of 2018.
Men Channeling their love for Shibori
Male readers should not be disheartened as fashion is something that is not gender biased. Given the trajectory of men’s fashion, you can find a lot of hipster options when it comes to Shibori. From a trippy sweatshirt to an acid wash dress shirt, you have it all. You ditch your basics and take the road less travelled with Shibori.
Home Decor Ideas
Shibori is no stranger to home decor realm and has been used in the industry for years. It has been put to good use by crafting bedspreads, placemats, cushion covers, rugs, carpets, curtains and even tapestry, a lot of which can be crafted at home. The craft uplifts the spirits of the entire room and keeps the residents in a jolly mood.
It’s commendable how the artisans through ages have kept the craft alive and thriving. It has proven to be truly evergreen and fashion forward with all the variations that it enables. If you too, like most of the national and international designers have discovered your new found love in Shibori then hop on to www.fabriclore.com and browse from a huge collection of the ancient Japanese craft of resist dyeing. We feature a well-curated range of the craft on Cotton, Chanderi, Glazed Cotton, Georgette, Chiffon, Rayon and more in bright colors to suit every occasion.
Authored By: Sunidhi Gaur
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