Friday, May 18, 2007

Punjabi Jutti: Aladdin's Sandals

Not so much a new kid on the block, but an oldie and goldie doing rather well in the fashion stakes are Jutti, Indian slip ons. Jutti originated in the Punjab, and the shoes were of former Indian President, Gyani Zail Singh. Traditionally they were worn by women and older people in rural and urban areas because they were so comfortable. The grace and style of Punjabi jutti made with soft leather and immaculate embroidery also held appeal to young girls who wore them during social events like weddings and family gatherings. In the new jutti the traditional teela or zeri wali and Sundi embroidery with golden thread has been replaced by synthetic thread but the look and designs is no less attractive. Now the international demand for Jutti is enormous with the Punjabi Jutti makers working their fingers to the bone to keep up with demand for orders from UK, US, Germany, Canada, Switzerland Singapore and Hong Kong. Part of the global demand for the traditional Punjabi Jutti is the number of Indian immigrants now resident in these countries but also many believe the influence of Bollywood on the Western fashions.

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