At the end of the 19th century, the art of embroidery was widespread in Uzbekistan. Almost every woman knew how to embroider. As a part of a dowry, embroidered articles were made for weddings and decorated the room of the newly married.
Uzbek embroidery varies by purpose and is divided into embroidery of small household objects, and embroidery of clothes. However, the leading type of embroidery is undoubtedly Suzanne. The name is derived from the Tajik word meaning "needle". Suzanne is an embroidered piece of cloth used as a wall decoration. The biggest Suzannes are 2-3 meters long, and up to 2 meters wide.
Suzanne is embroidered in the original way of filling most of the area of the piece with patterns, leaving little background. Large Suzannes are made up of fragments, which have been separately embroidered previously.
The patterns of embroidery were created by artists who placed them with a sharpened straw called a "kalam".
The artists knew many different styles of ornamentation, and varied them to create new combinations, with carefully chosen colors.
Uzbek Suzanne may be said to be the national art form, having its own style, developed over the centuries. In the 19th century, Nurata, Bukhara, Samarkand, Shakhrisabz, Tashkent and Fergana became centers of artistic embroidery. Every school of embroidery has its own local traits.
Uzbek embroideries mainly depict the vegetable kingdom: luxuriant gardens and flower beds.
While becoming familiar with Uzbek Suzannes it is impossible to find two pieces alike, in spite of the similar patterns and colors. The variety of ornamentations and their combinations is what the art of Suzanne is based on.
Today, embroidery is continuing to be developed, both in handmade and industrial forms.
Bukharian Suzanne Welcome to the house of craftswoman Matluba Khatamova. Currently her business is Bukharian Suzanne production. Since long ago, the previous generations of her family have been involved in this business, which to the present day has been developed and sustained successfully.
Beginning last century, this family of embroiderers and weavers offered their works for sale in shops; now, the Suzanne of Matluba is not sold in artisan and souvenir shops, as it is considered to be unique, and is being sold abroad, with orders for her Suzanne being received from many different countries.
The average period of work on one Suzanne is two months, which makes every piece exclusive. All the materials used for Suzanne are natural, colored with natural dyes, which gives a bright and unforgettable look to every piece. Extremely rich in color and original in ornamentation, it is a wonderful decoration for any house.
Articles about Uzbek Suzanne in local and Central Asian travel magazines:
Lively colors of Bukhara's suzaneh >>>
Samarkand Suzane >>>