Types of Embroidery Designs & How to Use Them in Fashion Designing!

hand embroidery designs

India is a country, fortunate to have many cultures and religions. This diversity has blessed our country and its people with many stories, dance forms, paintings and various arts. These different types of arts and crafts along with embroidery designs. They are very popular all around the world. People loves to wear it. For example, many people visit Varanasi because of its richness in the history of our ancestors.

Among all of these, one craft which has become very popular in modern times are hand embroidery design. This is because of the detailing in the fabric as hands are used in the process. Another reason why these hand embroidery designs are famous is because of our rich heritage culture.

Every region in our country has their own flavour. You can recognize these flavours easily just by looking at the embroidery design. For example, the hand embroidery designs in Gujarat are more robust and Chikankari from UP is more intricate. Not only these two but every embroidery design produced in India uses a different kind of stitch and style. Also, the fabrics and colours used in the creation of these embroidery designs change with every region.

Top Hand Embroidery Design Used in India

There are many embroidery designs created in India since every region in our country has a unique style. Among all of these, there are some embroidery designs which are loved a lot by Indians and people all over the world. These designs are the most popular ones and no festival or wedding goes without their presence.

The most popular hand embroidery designs are:


Chikankari is an embroidery design which has a lot of history in its creation. It originated in Lucknow and is believed to be introduced by Nur Jehan. She was the wife of Mughal emperor Jahangir. This art form was used a lot in the garment creation of royal families during the rule of the Mughals.

The process involved in the creation of a Chikan uses block printing to design patterns on the fabric. The next step is to stitch around the pattern to give the design a proper finish. Then, the final output is washed so the traces of printing can be removed. When Chikankari was introduced, only white-on-white embroidery design was practised. Today, a lot of different colours and fabrics are used in this craft.

chikankari embroidery

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This type of embroidery design shows simplicity. It is a traditional embroidery style in Odisha and Bengal. Kantha work designed by rural women on garments like soft dhotis and sarees. It uses the method of simple running stitch along the edges of the outfit. The most interesting part of Kantha embroidery is the use of border thread as this thread is taken from the used cloth.

Kantha uses various motifs in its creation like animals, birds, flowers and other activities from our everyday lives. The format used while creating any motif is running stitch with short gaps. Today, you can create a lot of home decoration items and not just clothes using Kantha embroidery. You can design items like wall hangings, bed sheets, blankets and many others.

 kantha embroidery kantha embroidery

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Coming from the land of sarso da saag and makki di roti, Punjab loves its embroidery design known as Phulkari. It is very famous in its state and all over the world because of the detailing. The word Phulkari means flower and that’s what this embroidery design is all about. Using this embroidery technique, you can create many kinds of flower motifs.

Women were doing it as a timepass and a whole new embroidery type came into existence, just like that. This embroidery is done on the back of the fabric and the flower motif can be seen on the front. The fabric used in this embroidery is natural-dyed and hand-spun khadi cloth.

phulkari embroidery

Image Source- PinkPhulkari


An embroidery design which came to India from the land of Persia. It is an ancient embroidery technique which uses gold and silver thread on fabrics. This embroidery used more during the 17th century when Mughals ruled us under the king Akbar. Zardosi used to create garments for royal families during that era. They used silver and gold threads along with pearls and precious stones for the heaviness in outfits.

Even the fabric used during that time was of high quality since only royal families wore outfits created using Zardozi. Today, Zardozi work uses not just gold and silver but also copper wires and silk threads. However, the use of these threads and wires has not reduced the royalty of outfits.

zardosi embroidery design

Image Source- Strand of Silk


A type of embroidery design which is popular as Kashmiri embroidery, evolved under Persian and Moghul rule. We do not know a lot about the origin of this embroidery but people says that a Persian Sufi saint brought this art to Kashmir. It started as a hobby in Kashmir but soon became employment for many people as farming during winter is hard in Kashmir.

This embroidery designs depends a lot on the flora of the state. For example, Kashmir is a gorgeous place and has a lot of scenic beauty. The embroiderers use such live examples and incorporate them into their design. The use of animals, birds and other human figures is very less in this type of embroidery design.

kashidakari embroidery

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Do you also want to learn these hand embroidery designs? Then you can join our embroidery course and learn various stitching styles from home. 4-time National award-winning fashion designer, Neeta Lula will mentor you. Along with our expert faculty, you also get certified by the Govt. of India and Hunar Online.

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