It was the history of the Kashmir shawl, besides its beauty and design techniques, that made us fall in love with this ancient art. The golden era of the Kashmir shawl influenced the fashion around the world and, even though the motifs have come a long way since its origins, the techniques used to make a shawl in the 14th century still continue to be the same nowadays. Passed on through ancestors, the art of shawl making, together with carpet weaving, wood carving and papier maché have made Kashmir’s artisanship famous around the world.
The photographs date from the late 19th century to the middle 20th century.
Photo above: Shawl weavers, 1870.
Old woman spinning pashmina yarn on a charkha, one of the oldest known forms of the spinning wheel, undated (approx. late 19th century).
Kashmiri girls in traditional dresses at their spinning in a village in Kashmir, 1921.
Carpet designers in 1880. The designs were drawn in big sheets of paper before being woven.
The Taleem writer was an architect that would transform the design of a Kani shawl into numerical language (1951).
Carpet weaving workshop. Master craftsmen patiently teaching the apprentices, late 19th century.
Kashmiri weaver family weaving a Kani shawl in early 20th century.
Man weaving a pashmina Kani shawl in Srinagar, Kashmir on 1924.
Artisan weaving the famous Kashmiri carpet, 1951.
Craftsman sitting at his loom weaving a decorative wall piece in Srinagar, Kashmir, 1940.
Elderly wood carving artisan, 1950s.
Craftsmen embroidering carpets in 1890.
Kashmiri artisans at work, 1948.
PHOTO CREDIT: www.facebook.com/oldkashmirimages