Traditional Muktsari Juttis still popular footwear in India

November 14th, 2007 - 10:29 am ICT by admin  

Muktsar, Nov.11 (ANI): Muktsari Juttis the traditional ethnic footwear have long been a big charm in Punjab. Today, it is no more limited to one State but finds its lovers in various parts of the country and even abroad.

Though earlier known as the favourite of Punjabis living in rural areas, the Muktsari Juttis are also a big fascination as a casual wear among the high-end families in urban India.

Though available in various parts of the country these days, the best quality Muktsari Juttis are available in Punjab’s Muktsar, the city viewed as a synonym for the Jutti due to its widespread trade.

Decorated with “Tilla Zari” (or, gold embroidered) work and Phulkari (or, floral pattern) embroidery, the attractive Juttis are a joy to add to one’s shoe collection.

Muktsar’s local cobbler community has set up their own manufacturing and retail units to make and sell these Juttis. The relatively cheap price and marvellous craftsmanship are said to be the main factors that led to its popularity among the masses and classes.

According to Gurtej Singh, a manufacturer and supplier of Muktsari Juttis, “The artisans in Muktsar possess a rich art of making Juttis (or the traditional shoes). Muktsar’s Juttis are soft to wear and durable. People from all over Punjab come to buy the footwear and we also supply the traditional footwear to rest of the world.”

Village women play a significant role in making this traditional footwear. Women in Muktsar and neighbouring villages do the intricate embroidery bestowing an elegant look to the Juttis.

These women are skilled in the art of (gold embroidery) work and Phulkari (floral pattern) embroidery. The art has made most of them self-reliant.

“We are self-sufficient and also manage to save a little money. We charge 20-30 rupees (about half a dollar) to embroider a piece and feel secure. We don’t borrow money from anyone and rather earn it by hard work. I took up the embroidery of Juttis thirty years ago,” said Gurmeet Kaur, a rural artisan.

These traditional shoes with intricate embroidery and detailing are not only popular in Muktsar but at other places too.

“I prefer wearing a Jutti and have never worn any other shoes. People wear shoes too, but the one who is habitual of juttis will always wear them as an ‘addiction’. Wearing a Punjabi Jutti with Kurta-Pyjama makes me feel pompous,” said Amarjit Singh, a Jutti lover. (ANI)

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