April 2011

I had a half-white synthetic saree, with geometrical prints in black& red.
A red fabric was chosen as blouse to match the saree.
The whole embroidery was done only on the sleeves of the blouse.
For the first time I tried creating a different border pattern for kutchwork,
earlier, I just modified and customized the usual kutchwork patterns to my requirements.
I used black, grayish green, and white colour threads to embroider the pattern.
The mirrors were done in red .
Other than kutchwork and mirrors, chain stitch,
two variations of feather stitch, and some straight stitches around the mirror were used.

kutchwork on red blouse

The mirrors-

kutchwork on red blouse- mirrors

The border closeup-

kutchwork on redblouse- border

The saree is not with me anymore, but the blouse is still worn along with some other sarees. Because of the three colour combination- red , black& white.

I drew kutchwork patterns on graph and tried working the journey for these new patterns.
Instead of doing them a sampler, I embroidered on tunics.
In this tunic, I chose one motif and repeated to form a border.
This border was worked in the middle and sides on the front side of the tunic.
I knew , kutchwork in black thread is done on black fabric, making it look as a part of the fabric, like lace.
Here, I wanted to try using medium red on maroon striped tunic.
The tunic

red kutchwork tunicred kutchwork tunic-frontred kutchwork tunic-side closeupred kutchwork tunic-sleeves

I did the small square motif in the middle, in dark brown-

red kutchwork tunic-front

I turned the border pattern at right angle and used it for the sides.-

red kutchwork tunic- side closeup

 For the sleeves alone, I used a different motif border, and every alternate motif is done two colours-

red kutchwork-sleeves

After completing the embroidery, I gave the fabric for sewing.

This time all the pictures came got glued together, I had to insert again!

kutchwork on maroon blouse

The inspiration for this pattern came from a magazine. I saw a saree, which was embroidered on the border and pallu. It was done in aariwork[hook]. I still haven’t tried doing that work. My idea was to work chain stitch in single strand of cotton skein.
Then I bought a semi-tussar saree, in maroon, green ,black, beige colours[all colours together in one saree]. For this ,a semi tussar blouse material in maroon was chosen.
With all my enthusiasm[this was in place of my skill] drew the pattern on graph paper.
A medium size border, with uniformly placed single squares[for kutchwork] all over the sleeves of the blouse.
These single squares were done in two colours[they were slightly apart, which meant I couldn’t cross over from the wrong side] all together a time consuming foolish pattern idea!
The border was a piece of cake compared to the single squares.
I seem to have used the kutchwork with a vengeance on this blouse.

As for the colour combination, the threads I used were based on the saree colours, but they do look dull.
Lesson learnt- when doing a time consuming large embroidery, make sure the colours look extraordinary and matches most of the common outfits. Only then it is attractive.
Now the saree has gone, It is so difficult  to use this blouse now.

Today, I don’t  have time to play cat and mouse game with inserting pictures.Laksmi had given a suggestion, but I also  need a guide.LOL!

The time is not wasted , Iam drawing a pattern for a yoke.It sure does take time. It is a kutchwork pattern, After seeing my previous projects, I was tempted to  draw another kutchwork pattern.

I worked border and square motif pattern in pink on the sleeves of a green saree blouse.
The saree was in pink with green border. This was a pune cotton saree. They are a distinct variety of their own.
The blouse was mercerized cotton in green.
I asked the tailor to mark where the sleeves would be cut, And I drew the whole pattern there.
The pattern was a very simple , I drew it on inch graph, and traced it .
The kutchwork was worked with medium[the colour of the saree] pink, and a some buttonhole and crossed straight stitches in very light green.

pink kutch on green-motif

The border-

pink kutch on green-border

The motif-

pink kutchwork on green blouse

For some reason, for the past two days,.I am unable to insert the picture at the proper place on my posts.I don’t know what to do,Iam spending so much time on each posts. Till I figure what to do, bear with me.


This tunic is double colour, dark pink and violet.
The fabric is south cotton with checks and zari border.
Thought, bright golden yellow thread will go well with the combination ,and I added a zari thread while going around the basic stitches.
The pattern-
A motif pattern is repeated to form a border on the right side of the tunic , the same motif[extended a little] is used for the centre .

the centre motif-

centre motif closeup

the right border-


right border closeup


the tunic-

yellow kutchwork on violet tunic


I wore a tissue dupaata[scarf] for this tunic.

I learnt kutchwork when Iwas twenty from a friend, after that did not have time to work on embroidery for some years. Later , I started taking more interest in designing embroidery on blouses and tunics. The availability of patterns was always scarce, those that were there ,did not satisfy my requirement.
Then I wanted to check my kutchwork skills, after some trial and errors, I could get the hang of it.This encouraged me to try new patterns on kutchwork.
All the designs on kutchwork, were my imaginations. So they don’t confirm to the usual arrangement. I had not seen many kutchwork patterns till then. And the best thing was, I had no idea of knowing that my designs were different.LOL!
All my earlier projects come under this category.

red kasooti on blouse

I have a cream Bengal cotton saree, woven with red border.
I found a red checked in mangalagiri cotton, for blouse.
For this set , the idea was to work kasooti embroidery border on cream cloth in red colour and attach it to the sleeves of the[ red] blouse, to match with the saree .
. Three borders were chosen and were drawn together on graph paper.
Being a light colour, the tracing was done with red carbon.
The threads were anchor cotton skeins[47, 20]
I traced the pattern on to the cream cloth, and had the blouse sewn, then started the embroidery.


I had bought this long stitch kit from Anchor, last year.this was a medium size picture, with a single kingfisher,
Once in a while I enjoy working on these kits- saves time,effort on designing, calculating.Only hassle is , after some the right index finger starts aching[all the pushing into the tight canvas].
This was my journey.
I started with the dark colours from the centre of the picture.This area was done with cotton skeins[came along with the kit] in 6 strands


The background in 4 strands.And the immediate foreground [yellow] in 6 strands.


Stitched the clouds in white, working the brown[8 strands] on the frame pattern.



Completed picture


Framed picture

kingfisher picture

 Didn’t know how to avoid the flash on the picture! LOL!

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