The city of Ahmedabad has a rich cultural heritage that is channelled in its arts and crafts, which are uniquely beautiful. Here are some of the handicrafts that you need to add to your shopping list while visiting here.

Chaniya Choli

A customised version of the ethnic Indian ghagra choli (a skirt and a dupatta), chaniya choli is quite popular in Ahmedabad. The skirt in chaniya choli is a knee-length one. It is a vivid collection of colours and designs to which odhini and other traditional ornaments are added as an accessory. The attire features a decorative sheen that is obtained from mirror work, silver or gold zari or gota to accentuate the embroidery.

Chaniya Choli

Bead Work

Gujarat is the centre of bead craft, also known as Moti Bharat. Bead craft requires stringing together beads of different colours and styles to create decorative household items and jewellery. The traditional art originated in the Saurashtra region and spread to Rajkot, Bhanagar, Amreli and Junagadh districts, apart from Ahmedabad. Tribal artisans of Panchmahal and Vadodara also make traditional bead jewellery.

Appliqu� and patch work

One of the oldest and finest crafts of Gujarat, patch work and appliqué use patches of fabrics stitched together to create floral and animal designs. In applique work, one fabric is applied over another and their edges are sewn together. This composition of stiching fabric over fabric adds to the visual depth of the product. These designs are used to decorate quilts, wall hangings, modern household products and apparels. Apart from Ahmedabad, this art is practiced in Saurashtra, Banaskantha, Patan and Kutch in the state. It is believed that the technique of applique work has been derived from the French culture and when translated means 'something applied'. It was discovered when torn clothes needed fixing and a primitive sort of applique work was done on them to make them wearable. In patch work, different patterns are made by piecing together cloths of different colours. This is especially done on quilts that make for great buys.

Block Printing

Ajarakh, matani-pachhedi, batik and saudagiri are some of the kinds of traditional woodblock prints that Gujarat is famous for. Markets in Ahmedabad such as Navrangpura and Sindhi Market are thriving with shops selling block-printed salwar suits, shirts, kurtas, jackets, skirts, sarees, dupattas, dress-materials, and a lot of furnishings like bed-covers, pillow covers, table cloth, curtains, etc. These fabrics are artistically decorated by printing them with carved wooden blocks. Even though it is a slow and manual labour-intensive process, any other method would be incapable of producing the spectacular results that it does. Usually linen, cotton or silk are used for this process. A variety of patterns are carved onto teak wooden blocks, which are then dipped in a coloured dye and pressed onto the cloth to form complicated designs. Only natural resources are used for woodblock printing.