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BRIGHT, HAND-SEWN RALLI QUILT, THAR DESERT, SINDH, PAKISTAN

BRIGHT, HAND-SEWN RALLI QUILT, THAR DESERT, SINDH, PAKISTAN

$260.00


Circa 2000 large, bright, cotton, fully hand-sewn ralli purchased February 2012 in Mithi from D.Vasalai's collection. 205 x 143cm

Gorgeous contrasting colours of egg yolk yellow, grey, black, bright pink, soft mid green, charcoal, red, and white. Six large appliqué squares on diagonal filled in with triangles of bright zig-zag in contrasting colours with white. Each triangle peak has been embroided with the KUNGRI symbol. Wide inner border of egg-yolk yellow and grey, a wider edging with white background and stylised 4 petalled flowers in all colours, a narrow strip of red and white zig-zags and finally a narrow strip of emerald green on each short end. The whole ralli is quilted in running stitched in charcoal. Backing is a wonderful printed adjrak cotton (the traditional textile of Sindh worn as a shawl by the men). A stunning quilt that would suit a contemporary interior. No wadding. Unstained and no holes. 

Some references state that there are similarities in Sindhi and US patchwork designs due to the influence of American missionaries who worked in this area in the 19 - century however tombs at ancient Sinai archaeological sites show carved designs in myriads of patchwork designs. 

The village I bought this quilt from in Sindh is one of the most remote regions of Pakistan and is approximately 10 hours drive south east of Karachi. On this trip I was accompanied by 2 policemen with machine guns who travelled in front in either a jeep or on a motorcycle. As I passed through each district the police changed. It was an extremely complicated process to gain permission to travel out into these remote districts. We travelled into a grey sandy desert and to get to the village we (myself, translator and village representative) got out and walked through the sandhills until we came to a small walled village consisting of mud huts with grass grooves. The huts had compressed mud floors that had been polished to a very hard, cement-like consistency There is no electricity and water is collected from a well.