Thapada is a `shawl` type garment popular in the Himachal Pradesh
state of India. This large shawl is considered a specialty of the handicraft of Himachal Pradesh. Its hallmark is the marvelous embroidery giving the Thapada, an ethnic as well as ornate look. It is designed with rich and intricate designs varying between wide ethnic ranges which promote the traditional pahadi designs. The popularity of this traditional garment has received acknowledgement in both national and international markets.
Origin of Thapada
In the year 1974, the board of Himachal Pradesh State Government Undertaking introduced the state level assistance for the handicraft makers and weavers in order to promote their financial and acknowledgement levels. One of the aims of the board was to provide scope for introducing fresher skills and designs. Suitable measures were taken to bring about marketing of the products, of which the Thapadas were one. In this way, this traditional garment came into prominence.
Weaving and Knitting of Thapada
Weaving in Himachal Pradesh is both a climatic necessity and ancient tradition. Hence weaving and knitting shawls and woollen attires at home is quite common here. Thapada can be availed in both forms hand woven and factory made. Though the factory made items do not have the same value as handmade products. The machines that are constructed for making Thapada are exclusively found in Himachal Pradesh. The trained and fancy needlework of the Thapada ensures a comfortable wear to the users. These garments are specially designed to provide protection and warmth from the harsh winters.
The various districts of Himachal Pradesh where shawl weaving and knitting is popular comprises of Kinnaur
Usage of Thapada
Thapadas are designed for both the genders. It is a versatile garment which can be worn for numerous social occasions and gatherings. The Thapadas that are designed for females can be teamed up with various costumes of Himachal Pradesh
. They can also be decoratively paired up with other Indian and western outfits.
The Thapadas that come for men are equally stylish to match up with every occasion. Thapada requires no special skill to wear. It is an easy to wear garment which comes in different sizes, colours, designs and colours to meet varied needs. Thus, the people who love to experiment with garments can try this traditional garment this winter.