Handicrafts of Nagaland
It is well known that Nagas are the living examples of skilled labours and craftsman and their handiworks are famous worldwide. Although we have come across several centuries since humans have learnt to make clothes, learnt pottery, do farming etc. But the people in Nagaland, mainly the tribes still make their things by their own. They use indigenous and natural recyclable products to manufacture items which are also durable in nature because these are abundant in the environment they live in. In this way they produce materials without polluting the nature and the human health. Naga tribes are so self-sufficient that they can make everything of their daily use by themselves, starting from clothes to their bed. They pass on their skills from one generation to another; even the women participate equally in producing the materials. If you visit the villages in Nagaland, you’ll find small girls playing with small weaving toys, in this way they get trained in these skills from their tender age which helps them in their future.
By now you know how Nagas make shawls and ornaments of their own, here we’ll discuss about how they make things out of canes and bamboos, woods, clay etc. The things produced looks very beautiful and get admiration even from the other countries across the world. Since everything is produced from the cottage industries, the things are quite expensive. As the work details are quite subtle and intense so the price really does not matter at all to the tourists visiting the place. If you want to buy these things, you ought to visit this place and buy these directly from the place where they are manufactured. These cane-craft materials can be used to decorate your home; however some of the materials among them are used by the Nagas in daily purpose.
Cane is a material which they use to make many things like sofa, chairs, baskets, and storage materials because it is soft and easy to handle. The baskets and storage materials are made by weaving canes which looks very sophisticated and the maze-like weaving done is really very tedious process. Some of the baskets made are not dyed while some baskets are made with canes dyed in different colours. The storage materials and baskets are made in various shapes and sizes and are apt for daily uses.
Wood carvings by Naga tribes are wonderful, works like these are rarely found these days. They use simple tools to make fine carvings on the wooden materials and make vases, bowls and cups. Wood crafting once was a very important source of income of the Naga people, so it is natural that they are very good in this area. These wooden crafts can be used for decoration purpose; a wooden vase in our home can bring an ethnic touch.
We have already said about how the famous Naga shawls are weaved and it is a very important skill among all the Naga tribes. Apart from the shawls, they also weave to make handbags and jackets. For this purpose, the popular loin loom was used by the weavers, a technique in which the Naga tribes excel. As the time has passed, the fly shuttle loom however has become very popular among the weavers. The decorations or the patterns used for making the bags and the other things from one tribe to another; however each tribe draw cues from their own traditions. Earlier natural dyes were used which has been replaced by the artificial colours. Cowrie shells and beads were used to describe the economical status of the person who carried the bags, now these are added to the handlooms for the purpose of decoration only.
Naga tribes have immense capability and skills which should be nurtured so that it does not disperse with time. The government of the country must take steps to motivate such intelligent people and bring their capabilities into the limelight.
The beautiful embroidery of Nagaland portrays the rich artistic caliber of the local craftsmen of the north eastern state of India. The local indigenous population of Nagaland design unique patterns on their shawls, clothes and other decorative items made up of cloth which reflects their cultural heritage. The splendid embroidery of the Angami Naga shawls of Nagaland has an internationally acclaimed status. Most of the tourists who visit the north eastern state prefer to buy the beautiful shawls as relic of the rich artistic creativity of the native population of Nagaland. Designed with colorful threads or wools, the Angami Naga shawls reflect the old glory and grandeur of the state of Nagaland.
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