Tharu applique is done by women of the Tharu tribe who live in the remote village of the Terai region. It is an ornamental craft applied to their traditional garments. The traditional items include ghagra choli, men’s caps, jackets, and pouches. Along with these items they also make jackets, purses, bedsheets, TV covers, handbags, and kerchiefs. Incisions are made on the uppermost fabric which is then hemmed down on to a base fabric. No shapes are cut out and the form is created on the reverse side. Steel needle and scissors are two basic tools required for this type of applique.
Rectilinear and geometric patterns comprising of triangles, fine lines, and colorful beads are made. The fabric, with a preference for bright colours, is purchased from a wandering salesman.
In Bihar, this technique is known as katwa, and katab in Gujarat, referring to cuts and slashes. The background fabric is kept darker than the appliqued layer. The appliqued layer covers the surface largely.