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burmese kalagas

Burmese Kalaga, Shwe Chi Toe, Collection

The crafting of Kalagas, curtains, in Burma, is an ancient tradition also called Shwi Chi Toe.  Originally made for wall decor in the Mandalay Court, they were rapidly adopted to use in homes.  The process starts with cotton fabric design cutouts that are then decorated with handmade sequins and couched colored threads.  These pieces are then attached to the background fabric and stuffed with cotton.  Next, the background is filled in with more sequins and swirled threads.  Hand-made glass beads are attached by more threads.
Elephants are the most popular design in Kalagas, representing Wisdom, Strength, Regal Character and Buddhism

The smaller pieces are suited to either framing or pillows.  The larger pieces are best for wall hangings.  We have framed them in many ways including using a mat of mirror which accentuates the gold glitter element of these pieces.  The framing process can be very creative, enhancing the end result. The video below tells the story of the art of Kalaga, Shwe Chi Toe

Love is the Absence of Judgement. -Dalai Lama

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