Singular, special & exclusive artisan creations
Welcome to Birch & Loom; your destination for beautiful textiles, handcrafted homewares and original accessories. All our products are sourced directly from the artisans who make them in India and South East Asia. In doing so we support their financial independence as well as helping to preserve traditional creative techniques which are at risk of disappearing.
There is only one place in the world where rogan art is practiced, and that is in the sleepy town of Narona in Gujarat, in India’s isolated northwest. Isolated it may be, but the fame of the rogan practitioners has spread far and wide, so much so, that a rogan work was selected by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to present to Barack Obama on the occasion of his visit to the United States in 2014.
Suzani originates from the Persian word suzan, meaning needle, and originated in Central Asia, particularly Uzbekistan, Tajikstan and Kazakhstan. It was a skill practised by nomadic tribes who used the large embroidered panels as a protective wrapping for their belongings, as prayer mats, bedding and for seating inside their yurts.
They were traditionally made by the women of the family as part of the bride’s dowry, and carried symbols of health and fertility. Floral patterns, pomegranates, suns and moons, leaves and vines are all typical design themes.
Jamdani is an exquisite weaving technique originating from Dhaka, now in Bangladesh, and parts of West Bengal. So fine were the fabrics, and so delicate the woven embellishments, that it has been long been associated with royalty, both Indian and British. The jamdani technique is one of the most time consuming and labour intensive forms…
In the incessant hustle that is India, where everyone seems to be either on the make or on the take, sometimes someone comes along who miraculously makes problems go away and makes impossible looking logistics become a breeze. One such person is Jaipur’s Mr Nordeen Khan, driver for hire, guide, friend, and all-round good guy….
I’d never recommend anyone to visit Nukus to enjoy scenery, weather or cultural ambience. Tucked up in the northwest corner of Uzbekistan, the capital of the Karakalpakstan region, it is flat, dusty and impoverished, with a desert climate which makes it unpleasantly hot most of the year and unpleasantly cold during its brief winters. Due…