Monday, October 12, 2020

KURTA



 A kurta (or sometimes kurti, for women) is a loose collarless shirt worn in many regions of South Asia, and now also worn around the world. Tracing its roots to Central Asian nomadic tunics, or upper body garments, of the late-ancient- or early-medieval era, the kurta has evolved stylistically over the centuries, especially in the South Asia, as a garment for everyday wear as well as for formal occasions.

The kurta is traditionally made of cotton or silk. It is worn plain or with embroidered decoration, such as chikan; and it can be loose or tight in the torso, typically falling either just above or somewhere below the knees of the wearer.The front and back of a traditional kurta are made of rectangular pieces, and its side-seams are left open at the bottom, up to varying lengths, to enable ease of movement. The sleeves of a traditional kurta fall to the wrist without narrowing, the ends hemmed but not cuffed; the kurta can be worn by both men and women; it is traditionally collarless, though standing collars are increasingly popular; and it can be worn over ordinary pajamas, loose shalwars, churidars, or less traditionally over jeans.

Styles

A traditional kurta is composed of rectangular fabric pieces with perhaps a few gusset inserts, and is cut so as to leave no waste fabric. The cut is usually simple, although decorative treatments can be elaborate.[citation needed]

The sleeves of a traditional kurta fall straight to the wrist; they do not narrow, as do many Western-cut sleeves. Sleeves are not cuffed, just hemmed and decorated.[citation needed]

The front and back pieces of a simple kurta are also rectangular. The side seams are left open for 6-12 inches above the hem, also referred to as the chāk, which gives the wearer some ease of movement. 

A traditional kurta does not have a collar. Modern variants may feature stand-up collars of the type known to tailors and seamstresses as "mandarin" collars. These are the same sort of collars seen on achkans, sherwanis, and Nehru jackets.

Material

Kurtas worn in the summer months are usually made of thin silk or cotton fabrics; winter season kurtas are made of thicker fabric such as wool or "Khadi silk", a thick, coarse, handspun and handwoven silk that may be mixed with other fibers. A very common fabric for the kurta pajama is linen, or a linen-cotton mix ideal for both summers and winters.[citation needed]

Kurtas are typically fastened with tasselled ties, cloth balls, and loops, or buttons. Buttons are often wood or plastic. Kurtas worn on formal occasions might feature decorative metal buttons, which are not sewn to the fabric, but, like cufflinks, are fastened into the cloth when needed. Such buttons can be decorated with jewels, enameling, and other traditional jewelers' techniques.

Decoration

Tailors from the Indian subcontinent command a vast repertoire of methods, traditional and modern, for decorating fabric. It is likely that all of them have been used, at one time or another, to decorate kurtas. However, the most common decoration is embroidery. Many light summer kurtas feature Chikan embroidery, a specialty of Lucknow, around the hems and front opening. This embroidery is typically executed on light, semi-transparent fabric in a matching thread.[cit

The kurta usually opens in the front; some styles, however, button at the shoulder seam. The front opening is often a hemmed slit in the fabric, tied or buttoned at the top; some kurtas, however, have plackets rather than slits. The opening may be centered on the chest, or positioned off center.[citation needed]


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