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Asif Shaikh

A meticulous master's marvelous needlework

Employing strikingly elegant, meticulously crafted techniques, master Indian textile artist Asif Shaikh’s distinctive methods have earned him numerous accolades. He was fascinated by the craft of embroidery from a young age. His early interest developed into a highly refined sense of aesthetics, with a keen desire for detail and design, and a desire to learn both traditional and contemporary weaving techniques.

Over the course of 25 years, Shaikh’s practice has only become more refined and distinctive. His creations include fantastically patterned, vividly colored shawls, scarves, and wraps, along with other accessories. Products are made using handwoven silk and cotton, which are then block-printed and painted using natural dyes on different textured fabric. These are further embellished with hand-embroidered elements on a scroll frame known as “karchob.”

Karchobi embroidery was brought by the Mughals in the 16th century under the patronage of Mughal emperor Akbar. A creative heritage that dates back many centuries, embroidery contributes to contemporary needs with social and cultural value. In the late 17th to early 18th centuries, the state of Gujarat was fragmented into small kingdoms ruled by the newabs and princes. The influence of their lifestyle created consumer demands from royal patrons for highly skilled, sculpted aesthetic products. Today, customers from around the globe can enjoy Asif Shaikh’s magnificently beautiful interpretations of these regally designed and painstakingly constructed garments.