Very rare and old craft

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

I had posted these pictures in the photos forum I thought this is a better place so that more people with like-interest will be visiting this forum. I'm new to this particular forum. This one is a model of a Fruit Basket. It is made from Paddy by my grandmother about 30 years or so ago.

Thumbnail by Dinu
Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Here is the close-up of how it is made.

Thumbnail by Dinu
Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

It is another art work of my grandmother. It was made in 1936. Yes, 1936. It has been made on velvet cloth and the white material is, believe me, rice. It has won many prizes in various exhibitions.

Thumbnail by Dinu
Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Close-up.

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Benton, KY(Zone 7a)

WoW! I saw this over in photos,but these are quite spectacular! Your grandmother was quite a talented lady!

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

Wow, that is fantastic. I love the old crafts. When I use to live in NY, they would teach classes on the old crafts, so they wouldn't be lost. That is one I've never seen before.

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Surely, Auzzie, even in those days, she was perhaps the only one who did this kind of art. I do not remember her telling where she learnt from. It is my duty to preserve such things merely for the pleasure of it.

(Zone 5a)

Dinu, your family is very unique and talented. What an honor to preserve such treasures. They are in very good shape!

Dublin, CA(Zone 9a)

Very pretty! I wonder how long it takes to do that with all the little grains of rice, must take a lot more patience than I have!

The Woodlands, TX(Zone 8b)

Those are amazing! I bet they took many hours to finish.

What is a 'Paddy'?

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Indeed, it takes many hours, even days. She had to do this besides her culinary commitments in the kitchen. I have seen her do it when I was a young boy and I am still amazed at the perfection in what she did. The food tasted better from her hands too. Her few specialities had won prizes in the cooking competetion many in the 60s. (She died 1978). My mother too learnt many things from her.

Paddy: Rice with its full cover/shell is called paddy. After paddy is milled we get rice. Paddy husk is used as fuel, the next layer that comes out of the mill, is fed to the cattle.

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Those are beautiful. You are fortunate to have these works of art and cherish them in her memory. They are so much more valuable to you because of their history.

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Yes indeed, more so since I have actually seen her do - she had done before I came to this world too. The picture from rice was made in 1936, yes, 1936. Rice still in tact, though some grains have fallen.

Scotia, CA(Zone 9b)

Both pieces look like they should be preserved in a museum. They are priceless!

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

And many people call it a museum, and they have good reason to do so. I have only posted the the tip of the iceberg! If I post all, or most, it'd probably bore the audience??? The great advantage for us preserving the the old things (probably old habits included, LOL) is that my grandfather moved to another house and that was the only move. So things stayed on, since that was also a big house. Now I returned to the house which my g-g-father built and lived. We haven't disposed much, but on the other hand kept others' things to help their convenience and later returned, esp.furniture.

Scotia, CA(Zone 9b)

Bore us? LOL I think many of us delight in seeing such wonderful treasures. Having a history of them given as well is what we call "icing on the cake"

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Thanks for the encouraging remark, Zany.

Yorkshire,

Dinu, I have only just found this thread and I just had to say how beautiful your Grandmothers work is. My jaw dropped when I saw the close-up of the picture made from rice and how each little grain is stitched into place. What a talented lady your Grandmother was!!
Thank you for taking the time and trouble to post such interesting things. Please don't ever think that you would bore anyone. I, for one, know that it will be something very interesting and intriguing whenever I see a post with your name to it. I would love to see more of your pictures........please :o) and thank you for showing us them.

Terri

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Thanks for your good words, Terri. Okay, will do so whenever opportunities arise.

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

I've embroidered with glass beads before, so I can only imagine how much more tedious and time consuming it would be, to embroider with rice!
Thank you for sharing with us. What a treat to see that. Too bad she didn't teach another family member her wonderful art. What a legacy...

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Thanks SP. Not that she did not teach anyone, but there were none - my mother knew it but rarely had time to pursue this art as when she entered our home, it was she who helped her - none to take up this difficult art. Not many did it. It was rare and each time it was exhibited, it won a prize. Patience - the one missing part in the present generations! Show us your glass-bead work sometime.

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

Dinu-
Is your mother still alive to pass this one?

It almost looks like your grandmother did a herringbone stitch over the rice?...actually, the more I look at it, it looks like a crosstitch over rice... Also, there looks like more than just rice, but I can't tell what else is in there...are there beads/buttons, wide ribbon and a decorative gilded, or metal coiled ribbon?

I don't have any of my beadwork to show. I've given each one away :0(
Basically you can follow any crosstitch pattern, but instead of making an "X", you only make one stitch "/" with a little glass bead strung on it...very time consuming, but then again it is amazing how much time you can find here and there, like waiting for an appointment, or other such thing, once you start a project!

Little glass beads have a hole in them, so you can work with them a little easier. Rice would be much harder to work with and you would have to make a much tighter stitch.





This message was edited Aug 3, 2007 9:18 AM

Tampa, FL

Dinu, what a privilege to see this incredible art form! Each stitch is so perfect..and how wonderful that you appreciate what it is to preserve these pieces! Love, the story behind the work too, as it creates a mental picture of the lives of people in other countries! And other times... thanks, sue

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

Makes you wonder how they found the time without all the modern conviences we have now. Or do these things actually waste our time?

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

I am of the opinion that we waste more time these days pretending to be doing something and looking busy. At the end of the day we would not have achieved much! In olden times, the thinking was different, needs were different. It is a long chain of facts that keeps us occupied these days and it is inevitable. Those days, women stayed home. Working women were looked with raised eyebrows. That was the culture. But then things have changed. We had joint families and so the house work was shared with proper understanding between the ladies. Also, maid servants would share the burden. As such, they were having free time in between and they never wasted that one moment. Crafts had recognition and it was a privilege to know arts and crafts. Women would share their knowledge when they met and so the other would try the newer things. There were people who appreciated them and most houses proudly displayed showcases in a prominent place of the living room so that visitors would see and enjoy the work. That gave satisfaction to the lady that did them. Now the TV will be on even when the visitor comes. It is the worst thing that has spoiled the society in reality. They are so addicted to the Idiot Box.

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

I agree with everything you said, and wish it were that way again, with one exception: I would not want to share my husband with another wife!, lol...

My hubby and I are as old fashioned as they come these days, I guess. We rarely turn on the TV, and are still for marriage, or abstinence, and I stay at home, and no longer "work". I feel women should embrace being women, and stop trying to be men.

So many things are becoming a lost art with women...not just crafting.

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Well said, and they are very true! I'll come up with a post on my aunt's other proficiency - with playing the Veena, a lovely musical instrument.

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

A person is expected to do more now than 100 years ago. All you have to do is look at an ad and all the grooming "needs" that where done without then. Do you think it took anyone 1/2 to an hour to get ready in the morning?
Our life is so different that it seems crazy to sit and hook little bits of rice into a design.
I hope that there are still people out there that can unwind from the day (of work, or chores) and do these lost arts.
It is amazing what a valualbe item can be created out of little or nothing.

Tampa, FL

Well, i do agree with all that has been said..but the crafts now are still being done between women...scrapbooking get togethers, are preserving in an artistic way your family heritage? Beading and jewelry making is very popular, one only has to go to the big box stores to see all the material out there...i craft cards, paint, illustrate, do mosaics, make jewelry,household items....and you are so right dinu, that what is made and displayed in my house, gives me such satisfaction when noticed by friends! Giving handmade gifts to friends & relatives is so gratifying too. Quilting is an age old tradition and there are still many quilting societies for all sexes and ages....with the age of the computer, we can now display our works of art to an even larger audience..(like we do on this DG website!) And have the pleasure & fascination of learning was is important in life to other cultures too. AND seeing their exquisite handiwork. There are whole schools in the Appalachian mts. (and all over) devoted to old crafts etc...i am an avid tv watcher, and wish i wasn't, would probably get more things accomplished! I think we are trying to get back to simpler pleasures...gardening is the number one pastime here in the states...i personally turn to my gardens when stressed or sad...it gives me peace & serenity to deal with life's problems again. sue

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Dinu,

I so enjoy reading all your Posts and stories. A window on another part of the World.

I used to do a lot more crafts. I sat up into the wee hours of the morning working on this and that. Of course, I did not have a job then. I was a stay at home Mom. I sewed all my clothes and those of my children. I cooked and cleaned and raised my 2 daughters.

Times change. My kids are grown and gone. I am divorced and working part time for the last 4 years. I have the house and home to care for and all the bills to pay. I am also a HUGE gardener. it is my sanity, my escape and my piece of mind.

Since I joined DG about 5 years ago, I now spend too much time on the computer. I could spend this time doing other things, but I am lonely, and DG is like a window on the World to me. It is the first thing I do in the AM and the last--before i go to bed.

There are so many things we all now do and take part in that were not around 2 generations ago. Days and nights are filled with things that "have to be done". Seldom do we take the time to relax and just "be"..... Read a book, do some needlepoint. knit something, sew a few things. Who has time????
We all have cars and every appliance available to do all the housework. Back in the "old days" no one had any of that. Women worked and farmed and cooked and raised endless children pretty much on their own. Yet they still found time to do all the beautiful things by hand--like dinu's grandmother did. What a shame that today's young people do not show interest in these lost arts.

It saddens me to no end.

Gita (NO! dinu. I am not from India).

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Gita-not-from-India,
You have actually explained what was in my mind. You have put it better. Give the younger generation an e-tool and they think they got everything. Yes, times and attitudes have changed over time, some sail with the wind but the *heavier* lot [probably like me] stay behind!! LOL. Yes, without technology, we would not be sharing here sitting in our rooms and still showing things to each other! Amazing!

Dinu from India

Gladwin, MI(Zone 5a)

I agree that there are many people scrap-booking. And I think that is great, but more of these modern crafts are the "buy and make" kind which are different from the old crafts I think.
All you have to do is see how your great grandmother embellished her petticoat by stripping out some threads and tying others together to form a lace, or tatting, or other lost arts.

Tampa, FL

Too true Dinu and Cpartschick! We couldn't be having this discussion w/o DG!! And Gita i agree, i spend way too much time on DG's forums instead of creating...I have made such wonderful bonds of friendship...and like you, i start & end my day seeing what is happening on my favorite threads with my favorite people!! lol...Ms. "chick", we have not the need to tear up my old petticoats (haven't had one of those since the 60's! lol!) We are such a wasteful generation...a throw-it away, group rather than repair it... We are not in the financial straits many of our parents & grandparents & great grandparents experienced during depression years (my dad told me they would pick coal off the rr tracks to help heat their home) & grandma did make bathtub liquor that Dad as a little boy would run it to the neighbors in a mason jar!!) hope that doesn't shock you folk, it is what was done to make ends meet back then......It makes me wonder how well us "spoiled" children would cope? Sorry Dinu, didn't mean to make your thread travel in this direction...interesting thread however...sue

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Hijacking the thread for good is what is happening! We are bringing up many things around the subject, are not we? So let's let it go with the wind.

My book shelf also has gathered dust. Before I got the internet connection I was reading a biography on Abraham Lincoln but that had to be abandoned for obvious reasons as the PC hijacked!

I'll post a work of art as we go by, but that is not from my GM or aunt.

Dinu

Tampa, FL

You are a journalist or poet Dinu? A lovely way with words...a work of art from another part of the world..would be so nice....

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Neither a journalist nor a poet. But just learning newer things every day esp. here on DG which has provided me a fine platform to do and think things that were not possible before. However, quite a few of my letters and short articles have been published in local papers. I try to express myself with my limited vocabulary and knowledge. Kannada is our spoken language. English is taught in schools and speaking English does not come naturally to me. Thanks for the appreciation.

Here is another work of art from my GM. Guess what is the main material used. Will come back and post the pic.

Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Here it is.

Thumbnail by Dinu
Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

This is a famous painting by Raja Ravi Varma, very famous for his own beautiful style. It was reprinted into calendars esp. by Vinolia Soaps - probably 1920s or 30s, official suppliers to the Royal Family of England (methinks). This picture depicting Godess Lakshmi is decorated by my GM with appropriate materials to make it look very attractive and natural. It's not a good picture but you can get an idea. Will try to get a closer and sharper picture from my new camera.

Thumbnail by Dinu
Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Ditto, but Godess Saraswathi (Godess of Learning). Lakshmi is Godess of Wealth.

Thumbnail by Dinu
Mysore, India(Zone 10a)

Another 1936 work with rice. That is the two-headed mythological bird 'ganduberunda' which is the Mysore Royal Family's insignia.

Thumbnail by Dinu

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