Bhusra, Bihar


Sujani embroidery originated in the late 1920s in Bhusra, Bihar. This craft is said to be practiced by Rajput women in their free time for personal use. They weren’t allowed to go out of their house and Sujani became a means of expression for them. Historically, it began as a form of quilting to create blankets for new born babies. Old pieces of cloth were sewn together where even the threads were pulled out from the loose ends of the fabric. This was done to envelope the baby in the soft embrace of a mother.

Ritually, joining tattered pieces invoked the presence of Chitriya Ma (Lady of the tatters), symbolising the concept that all parts belong to the whole and must return to it. Sujani has always been a means to
express personal stories by women. But, its transformation to comment on political as well as social views by women is inspiring. This depictions in Sujani is more prominent in Bhusra. In Gangapur, Madhubani, an influence of its popular style of painting can be witnessed. Motifs and stories surrounding Hindu dieties, birds and animals are more prominent here.

The running stitches all over the base of the fabric create a rippling effect which makes the motifs in the foreground stand out. This creates a more striking composition visually. One more feature of Sujani embroidery is that the running stitch is always done in straight lines. This form of embroidery is similar to Kantha embroidery of Bengal, where stitches can be made in any direction.



The outline of the design is transferred on to the cloth either through drawing or via tracing.

Chain stitch is used to embroider the outline of the motifs. Then the motifs are filled with tiny running stitches using colored threads.

The entire background is filled by fine running stitches in the same color as the base cloth.