Phulkari Dupatta can be worn in different ways. However, do you know the history of Phulkari Dupatta? If not, then here we will share in detail with you "What is the phulkari" and what is its history.

Meaning of Phulkari:

The word 'Phulkari' translates into ‘flower work’, and has a history etched in the culture of Punjab. Spun from the charkha this spectacular style of embroidery is patterned on odinis, shawls, kurtis and chunris. The main feature of this phulkari dupatta is the use of the darn stitch on the backside of the cloth. The first mention of the Phulkari dupatta is being mentioned in the famous folklore of Punjab Heera Ranjha. Phulkari is the dream weaver of every Punjabi girl.

Phulkari is brought to India by the Jat People of Central Asia however, the patterns were not mentioned in texts but transmitted by the word of mouth. This tradition was not associated with sikh but hindus and muslims. The first mention of Phulkari is being found in the famous folklore of Punjab Heera Ranjha. The embroideries were a mere reflection of a woman’s life and every woman had her way of representing herself.

It was an art that offered complete freedom of creativity. Motifs used were an adroit representation of the dear and sundry values of Punjab. Since it was essentially a communal activity, colors and shades were somewhat run-of-the-mill, however, the fact that most of the women were experts in Phulkari would even make mediocre look exquisite.

There are several types of Phulkari Embroidery:

Thirma: It is considered to be the symbol of purity which is worn by elder women & widows.

Darshan Dwar: This type of Phulkari Embroidery was designed keeping in mind women going to the temple.

Bawan Bagh: Mosaic of fifty­two different patterns which decorate the piece and is the rarest of all.

Chope: It is another type of Phulkari Embroidery which is used only with one color especially on border.
Surajmukhi: It represents Sunflower which is main pattern of the Phulkari

Kaudi Bagh: Chains of small white squares representing stylized cowries.
Panchranga: Decorated with chevrons of five different colours.
Satranga: Decorated with chevrons of seven different colours.
Meenakari: Made of gold and white coloured pat, is decorated with small multicoloured lozenges referring to enamel work (meenakari)



The Phulkari is still a very integral and vital part of Punjab culture. It is immensely crucial to keep the traditional handicrafts alive. However, to keep this art alive, recreating the embroideries in styles that look current and follow classic processes. Phulkari dupatta is still immensely popular not only among the Punjabi's but across the India & Globe. From a mere domestic art form, it has earned a place on couture collections of international designers! Interest in the realm of Indian Fashion indicates only that brighter days for phulkari embroidery are around the corner.