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R. SHAH TRADING CO.

A Wholesalers boutique for Kashmiri & Nepali shawls,Carpets, Copperware, Crewel & Indian Handicrafts.
 

 

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It is said that the shawls were famous from Kashmir even in the times of emperor Ashok (3rd C BC) but many writers credited Sultan Zain-Ul-Abidin(1420-1470 A.D) as the initiator of Shawl industry in Kashmir.It may be the Sultan whose enlightened rule encouraged promotion of arts as an organized trade and the Pashmina or in Persion called "Pashm" that we know today is a legacy of that period.

Shawls have been worn and used as a warm protective garment by kings and queens since ancient times.However,the Mughal emperor Akbar experimented with various styles and encouraged weavers to try new motifs, which helped establish a successful shawl industry.The shawl,or shoulder mantle,has been in existence in India in a variety of forms since ancient times,servingthe rich and poor as a protective garment against the biting cold.

Though the history of shawl weaving,with which the history of woolen textiles is closely associated, is rather obscure,references to shawls are first found in the Ramayana and Mahabharata and the Atharvaveda.The shawl is also mentioned in ancient Buddhist literature among the recorded inventories of woolen garments.

Derived from the Persian shal, which was the name for a whole range of fine woolen garments, the shawl in India was worn folded across the shoulder, and not as a girdlw,as the Persians did.Even today,we sometimes see old Parsis with a shawl tied around their waist during their religious ceremonies.

Though shawls are worn and used as a warm protective garment all over the northern states today, Kashmir has become synonymous with shawls all over the world.There are no earlier indications but around the Mughal rule in India, Kashmir soon overtook the northwest frontier and Punjab, as the center of shawl-making.Akbar was greatly enamored by the kashmir shawls and the way it was worn,folded in four,captured his imagination.He experimented with various ways of wearing it,and found that it looked gooid worn without folds,just thrown over the shoulder.

 
 
 
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Wood Carving

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