Mata Ni-Pachedi

The Vaghri community in Gujarat make their living by block printing and painting shrine cloth known as Mata ni Pachedi or Mata no Chandarvo. These Pachedis are used as canopies over the image of the mother Goddess. Pachedis are used in religious ceremonies and record the myths and legends associated with the living traditions of the people.
Pachedi is always framed with a bold border, which is divided into a line of single color and a band of decorative linear patterns. Traditionally maroon and black were the colors used, with the surface of the material as the third color. Black not only was used as a color but also as the outer linings of the icons and the motifs. Filling in the motifs were sometimes replaced by linear work and imagery. The maroon and black colors were natural dyes sourced from alizarin and oxidized metal. Maroon was associated with the color of the Earth and believed to possess healing powers. The color black was meant to repel malevolent spirits and intensify spiritual energy. White was considered the color for purity and contact with ancestral spirits,deities and other unknown spiritual entities. Gradually other colors from nature started adding to the color palette without having any religious significance. The most common motifs, apart from Mataji astride a bull or a tiger, include lady with a flower, trumpeters, angels, flowers, the tree of life and animals such as peacock, tiger, parrot etc.