CHOLISTAN, Aug 14, 2013 (Imran Mehr / UPI Next) — Ghulan Fareed spins camel hair on a hand loom six days a week to make thick Falasi blankets, traditionally given to brides in Cholistan, a small desert city in Pakistan’s Punjab province, to protect them from evil.
Like others practicing traditional artisanship, though, he is facing the grim reality that these handicrafts could fade away.
Using traditional tools and techniques, it takes Fareed, 55, two months to complete a single blanket. The price he gets, however, is not enough to feed his family. Young people are now taking other jobs, jeopardizing the future of the textile arts.
Falasi blankets are the traditional response to Cholistan’s desert cold and have come to symbolize the region. Other traditional arts, such as weaving and embroidery, are also struggling to survive.