Brocade can be defined as a splendid fabric. It is also termed as shuttle-woven fabric. It generally means embossed cloth. The work on it is shown as embroidered whereas it is woven to make patterns. Due to its richness, it can be put to several uses and gives a royal touch.
This work was in earlier times found mostly on Silk but in recent years it has been created on a variety of fabrics like Cotton, Rayon, Polyester and many more. Initially, the patterns were created by the use of golden and silver threads but now the use of different colours is in trend. Examples of few designs are Floral, Foliage, Spiritual motifs etc.
Traces of its origin in Past
Its usage was witnessed during the Mughal period being ruled by Emperor Akbar. It was assumed to be created by the Persian artists in his court. Primarily these were carved to make wall-hangings and other clothing. This was considered as a rich fabric for clothing by the Royal class people.
This art later emerged through Gujarat and Banaras, the places having the best of weavers required to weave this fabric. Today it has reached to almost each and every part of the world and is used in multiple ways. This fabric has now become accessible as well as affordable.
Formation of Brocade
This fabric is produced by weaving it on a draw loom. Normally there are two set of threads in weaving- Warp and Weft. The longitudinal thread in a roll is Warp, while the transverse thread is Weft. A supplementary weft technique is used apart from the standard weft to hold the warp threads collected. The use of this technique gives the fabric embroidered effect even if the fabric has actually been woven.
When it comes to types of Brocade, they can be termed as Continuous and Discontinuous ones. In Continuous brocades, one can find the supplementary weft hanging at the back of the fabric whereas in Discontinuous brocade it is woven in the selective areas.
Use of this fabric
Due its exquisiteness this fabric is nowadays used in designing Bridal clothing. It gives a glamorous appearance to the Bride. Brocade Sarees and Salwar suits are also in trend. Brocade Scarves and Dupattas also appear to be stylish.
Apart from Apparels, this fabric is also used in making of Home decor products like Curtains, Cushion covers, Pillow covers and many more. It undoubtedly gives a stunning look to the surroundings.
Ways to safeguard its longevity
It is suggested to follow the instructions label on the clothes. Most of the Brocade fabric are favored to be dry-cleaned in order to maintain its originality. Otherwise, soft hand wash is advised.
Also take care that while washing this fabric should not be washed with clothes leaving colour. This fabric is dried at a normal temperature and not in sunlight. It is necessary to keep them carefully after wash as well.