(Last Updated on : 04/10/2014)
Crafts of Meghalaya
speak of the artistic skill of the craftsmen and have a distinct individualistic touch. The crafts of Meghalaya are very important part of the states development. They play an important role in charming the tourists from parts of the world. Some of the famous handicrafts of this beautiful North Eastern state
, bamboo work, cane
work, stools, baskets, bamboo-fishing traps, cane containers, jewellery
, trays fans etc. The Khasis
are especially famous for weaving cane mats, stools and baskets. Hand weaving is also the most sought after profession, which has passed on from generation to generation.
Cane and Bamboo Work: Abundant availability of canes and bamboos
has made the people to utilize it not only for producing utility items but decorative items as well. Various kinds of baskets and mats are made from cane and bamboo. Pokerwork is a unique craft of the region where the designs are burnt into the bamboo with a red-hot pointed rod, which is mainly done by the Garos
. The Khasi women wear an attractive hat, which is made of a circular bamboo frame with a thick brim that is covered with cloth. Their special kind cane mat called 'Tlieng', is popular for its long lasting service. Winnowing fans, rain shields manufactured out of plaited bamboo and cane are mostly found in the rural areas. Jaintia fishing traps made of bamboo sticks are also in demand for its reliable usage.
Weaving is an ancient craft of the tribals of Meghalaya
and this craft is under the exclusive domain of the women. The patterns in the cloth are obtained by combining different coloured threads in the warp and weft. The Garos weave shirting, bed covers, bed sheets and tablecloths. A kind of silk produced in Meghalaya is called endi silk, which has a fine texture. Sonidan is an important centre for weaving endi silk. Silk
weaving is also encouraged in the state by training local weavers in a number of places. Dakmanda is a type of women clothing, which is very well decorated with beautiful flowers
in various combination of colours.
The jewelleries of Meghalaya also present an impressive craftsmanship. Ornaments like 'Kynjri Ksiar', 'Paila and Rigitok are some of the important crafts of the state. Kynjri Ksiar, made of 24 carat gold
and Paila, a string of thick red coral beads are usually worn by the Khasis and the Jaintias. Rigitok which is a thin fluted stems of glass strung by fine thread is generally worn by Garo ladies.
In some villages
of Jaintia and Garo, engravings of the figures of men and animals
can be seen on the walls of the house. Another engraving is of Near Jowai which features cravings of a lover and his beloved. These crafts evoke acclaim even in the present day for artistry in designing.