The beauty of luxurious Indian silks, weaves, prints, patchwork, embroidery work, stitch work and the vibrant colours and patterns are things of legend from time immemorial. History is full of the many quests that have been made for these treasures. Merchants from many distant shores have dared the perils of the sea for Indian cloth and designs as much as for spices. To dive into this opulent world is to be lost forever. But for the casual observer, here is a crash course in some of the most exquisite textile and design patterns in the country.

The Pashmina, from Jammu and Kashmir, is one of the most coveted and expensive of all woollen textiles in the country. The Union Territory is also famous for its distinctive and intricate embroidery techniques called Kashidari and Aari. For the lovers of embroidery and stitch work, the famous chikankari work from Uttar Pradesh, Kantha from West Bengal and Odisha, Pulkari from Punjab, zardozi from central India, patchwork from Rajasthan and mirror work from Gujarat are just some of the popular examples. 

The number of varieties of silk available throughout the country is astounding. From the quaint and graceful Chanderi silk, one can find variations like Bhagalpuri silk, Munga Silk, Mysore silk, Kuchai silk to the extravagant Kanjeevaram silks and Benarasee silks.