Significance of Traditional Motifs / Designs

Representative of the Indian culture are the traditionally designed Indian textiles boast of motifs. Fruits, flowers, birds or animals: here are some of the popular idea and motifs or belief that they signify.

The most smallest of a pattern or basic unit of a design is a motif. Often inspired by nature and also culture, socioeconomic or religious factors, the motifs on traditional Indian attire are all very distinct and mostly very colorfully represented. These motifs are often also a representation of the different form of styles from an era gone by, part of the Indian fashion regime since ancient time when kings used to rule the country.

Also derived from religious philosophies and architectures, flowers, birds, fruits and even animals have stories to tell, beliefs to share and the most common of these motifs are shared on this list below.

  • Peacock Motif

Found in the paintings from the Buddhist sculptures, Indus Valley Civilization, artefacts from the Mughal and Gupta period miniatures, peacock inspired motifs have been found in various form of art from different ages. The peacock motifs are commonly found on traditionally designed fabrics with more embellished designs on bridal wear as the peacock signifies the completeness of being women in some culture. It is also believe a sense of energy is carried which comes from its renewal of feathers every year.

  • Parrot Motif

Symbolizing courtship and passion, a parrot motif is commonly found in story telling artwork of Lord Krishna and Radha, a tale which is well recited in Hindu sagas and epics. Generally found on textiles from Gujrat, Rajasthan and West Bengal, the bird motif also symbolizes lovers’ associations and is often used in both brides and grooms wear.

  • Goose or Hansa Motif

The artwork of goose has been found in pottery from the Indus Valley and on the wall depictions at the popular Ajanta caves in Maharashtra, is also commonly considered as a representation of spiritual purity. This motif is now mostly found on textiles from the South India in form of kalamkari prints and kasuti embroidery, which is commonly used to be found in paintings from pre-mughal times.

  • Lotus Motif

The motif of the lotus flower or kamal is one of    the maximum famous motifs utilized in Indian fabric and artwork. It represents the strength of life, a image of the everlasting order of the union of water, earth and sky. Often emphasized on Indian saris, significantly with kantha embroidery.

  • Mango Motif

The mango motif which is commonly known as mankolam in Sanskrit or paisley and ambi in Punjabi. This motif is found on a wide variety of Indian textiles. Considering the mango motif as a symbol of fertility, it is done on varity of textile art form such as chikankari embroidery from Lucknow or kantha embroidery from Bengal.

The motifs which is being surfaced on Indian textiles are many with each holding its own representation of a meaning, which one may believe to emanate the vibe on the person who wear and adorns it.