Chikankari is an ancient form of white floral embroidery, intricately worked with needle and raw thread on a variety of fabrics like cotton, muslin, silk, organza etc. There are 36 types of stitches used in chikan work. Silk, cotton and polyester threads are employed for embroidery work on sarees, dupattas, table linen and kurtas. Cotton being the most preferred choice, chikankari is also done on mulls, muslins, voiles, organzas and polyester. The designs change every other month, as per the market trends, with colors that perfectly match with the season.
The patterns and effects created depend on the types of stitches and the thicknesses of the threads used in the embroidery. Different specialists work with different types of stitches. Each worker completes his/her bit and the fabric is then sent to the next embroiderer. Thus, each hand-crafted piece talks volumes about the number of people involved in making it and the long hours put in.
For more details: http://www.dsource.in/resource/chikankari-embroidery-lucknow