Chamba Rumal: Embroideries of the Himalayan Region

Pages 89–110
Keywords India, Himachal Pradesh, Chamba state, embrioidery, rumal, coverlet, mal-mal, cotton cloth, geometric pattern, floral pattern, figural pattern, ritual art, secular art
Type of Article Peer-reviewed
Citation PATHAK, Anamika. Chamba Rumal: Embroideries of the Himalayan Region. Annals of the Náprstek Museum. Prague: National Museum, 2010, 31(1), 89–110. ISSN 0231-844X (print), 2533-5685 (online). Also available from:
Annals of the Náprstek Museum | 2010/31/1

India has a great tradition of embroidery and different regions have distinctive styles of fine embroidery on cotton, silk and wool fabric. From coverlets to garments, these embroideries have lots of charm and attraction. Of all the regions of the country, the most artistic and picturesque embroidery comes from the Chamba state. It is known as chamba rumal (coverlet) and is done on white muslin or cotton fabric with colourful silk threads and silver metal thread. Although it is commonly known as Chamba rumal, it is not only rumal or coverlets that are made using this style. The important ones are wall hangings, variety of costumes, fans, covers etc, with beautiful religious, secular, geometric and floral patterned themes. The Chamba rumals show an interesting aspect of embroidery tradition, which reflects the social and cultural life of the people of this region.
After careful selection of some of the rumals from the collection of the National Museum, New Delhi, an attempt has been made to show its variety in the types of embroidery and themes that appear on these rumals.

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