A shawl is a simple item of clothing, loosely worn over the shoulders, upper body and arms, and sometimes also over the head. It is usually a rectangular or square piece of cloth, that is often folded to make a triangle but can also be triangular in shape. Other shapes include oblong shawls.Shawl and pashmina name comes from Kashmir, but it originates from Hamedan Persia. Sources consider Cashmere crafts were introduced by Sayeed Ali Hamadani In the 14th century Mir Ali Hamadani came to Ladakh, home land of pashmina goats where, for the first time in history he found that the Ladakhi kashmiri goats produced soft wool. He took someof this goat wool and made socks which he gave as a gift to king of Kashmir, Sultan Qutabdin. Afterwards Hamadani suggested to the king that they start a shawl weaving industry in Kashmir using this wool. That is how pashmina shawls began.
The United national specialized agency UNESCO reported in 2014 that Ali Hamadani was one of the principal historical figures who shaped the culture of Kashmir, both architecturally and also through the flourishing of arts and crafts and hence economy in Kashmir. The skills and knowledge that he brought to Kashmir gave rise to an entire industry.Kashmir was a pivotal point through which the wealth, knowledge, and products of ancient India passed to the world. Perhaps the most widely known woven textiles are the famed Kashmir shawls. The Kanikar, for instance, has intricately woven designs that are formalized imitations of Nature. The Chenar leaf (plane tree leaf), apple and cherry blossoms, the rose and tulip, the almond and pear, the nightingale—these are done in deep mellow tones of maroon, dark red, gold yellow and browns. Yet another type of Kashmir shawl is the Jamiavr, which is a brocaded woolen fabric sometimes in pure wool and sometimes with a little cotton added.
Carpet weaving is one of most important crafts in Kashmir. Kashmiri carpets are known allover the world for their design and weave. Handmade kashmiri carpets are either of silk or wool. Price of a carpet is determined by its knots. More knots per square inch more costly and durable the carpet would be. Both single and double knotted carpets are in high demand in india and abroad especially in Europe.
The history Kashmir carpet culmination of artistic magnificence -date back to the period of Said-Ul-Auliya Mir Sayyid Ali Hamadani 1341-1385 A.D. According to UNESCO report Ali-al-Hamadani was one of the principal historical figures who shaped the culture of Kashmir, both architecturally and also through the flourising of arts and crafts and hence economy in Kashmir.The skills and knowledge that he brought to kashmir gave rise to an entire industry. the famous sufi saint of persia who came to enlighten Kashmir with his spiritual guidance and brought along highly skilled artisans through the silk trade route and laid base for the cottage industries in Kashmir valley.
After the Mughal conquest Empror Akbar 1580 A.D. also brought weavers from Persia to Kashmir . A great period in the history of carpets in Kashmir came In the time of Zainul-Abadin (budshah) 1730 A.D. and our carpets started winning fame in far regions.
The skill of carpet weaving has been handed down by fathers to their sons, who built upon those skills and in turn handed them down to their offspring as a closely guarded family secret.
Srinagar is also famous for its dry fruits and spices. Different kinds of walnuts like kagzi walnuts, wont walnuts, burzil walnuts, and spices like saffron, shah zira and honey are some of the specialties of Srinagar.
Jammu and Kashmir is known for its pure and high quality saffron. The state of Jammu and Kashmir tops the list of the saffron growing states in India.
Kahmir is known for manufacturing of good quality cricket bats. There are various bat factories maily on Srinagar Anantnag highway offering the customers a wide range of quality bats. Kashmir willow is widely used in cricket bats and Kashmir is a leading exporter after the UK.
Kashmir has rightly been described as” the land offruits. Its land environment and climate has provided greater facilities forhorticulture industry to grow more rapidly. Today we see in this valley scoresof varieties of apple, pearl, Baggu Gosha, Walnut, several types of Cherry and other fruits which are grown and exported to other states.
Kashmir is known for its wonderful food and for its food loving people! Be it the mouthwatering wazwan, winter delicacy of harissa or the famous street food of Kashmir, the food here is as rich as the arts and crafts of Kashmir are. An outrageous must have for the calorie conscious and an absolute delight for the food lovers who are oblivious to calorie count; the street food here without a doubt is great!
Kashmiris love to have baker’s bread for their breakfast and hence, every Kashmiri colony has one traditional bakery known as ‘Kaandar/ Kandur’. Kandurs can be found everywhere in the cities, every locality will have one atleast. In Kashmir, there is a bread for every season. Bread is an integral part of social customs too – engagements, weddings, birth. Long before dawn, hundreds of baker families (Kandurs) in the Valley fire up wood tandoors and start making bread. These breads go well with salty pink tea called Nun chai. There are many types of traditional breads like chot, katlam, kulcha, lavaas etc.