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Leather Crafts

Leather

Leather Crafts

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In the villages a large number of artisans continue to use home-cured leather to stitch sturdy shoes or make attractive animal trappings. The water-carrier still uses a leather mashk to bring water from the well and where water to irrigate lands is drawn from wells the charas is quite commonly used. Leather is also used in the hookah bottle. In Peshwar and Rawalpindi, where most of the tongas/horse drawn carriages are painted and decorated with loving care, horse trappings are embroidered and studded with brass nails, strips and cut-out patterns.

Besides, leather artisans turn out travelling kits, belts, sword-sheaths, gun-cases, sports goods, ladies hand-bags, purses, pouches and whips in different shapes. Many of these items are decorated with, besides embroidered patterns, beads and appliqué work. Stool-sized leather cushions were quite popular till some time ago but now most people use leather for only the top of pirhis and moorhas.

A number of other leather goods are made from skins. There is a sizable production of shoes, hand-bags, pouches and wallets made of reptile skins. In these items, however, the craftsmen concentrate on experimenting with forms and little effort is made to interfere with the natural pattern on the skin. Another branch of craftsmen has taken to producing caps from Karakul skins, the most famous variety of which is called Jinnah Cap since it was adopted by the founder of the State, Quaid-I-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah.

Peshawari Chappal
One of the most popular and well known handcrafted products is the Peshawari Chappal. Although it is a specialty of Charsadda (a division of NWFP), it is also manufactured in Peshawar in Mochi Larah and Jahangir Pura bazaars.

Leather Embroidery
Leather is embroidered throughout Baluchistan but the articles produced in Kach in Makran, Las Bela, Nasirabad and Lahri, north of the Kachi plain, are particularly well known. A hooked awl is used with fine silk thread on leather for gun belts, saddles, sandals, shoes, belts, bags, and pouches in common use by both Baluch and Brahvi groups. Leather is dyed dark-red or brown and embroidered in a delicate chain stitch.

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