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Woman's robe

Woman's robe

  • Place of origin:

    Bhutan (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1910 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Embroidered cotton with silk and cotton

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Sir C. A. Bell KCIE, CMG

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This one-piece, wrap-around garment, called 'kushuthara', was the most prestigious type of apparel for women in the 20th century. It is made of three joined panels of cotton warp with supplementary weft in wild silk. This style of dress originates in the Kurto district in north central Bhutan and its patterning or kushu is found on other textiles from the same region.

Physical description

Portion of a woman's robe (kushuthara) in cotton and silk. In coarse unbleached cotton embroidered with patterning in terra cotta silk and indigo blue cotton. Three lengths are sewn together. Parallel stripes and a wide selvedge at each side are woven in red, green and yellow silk and blue cotton. The embroidered pattern is worked in red and blue in chain and darn stitch, and consists of diagonal lines of diamond-shaped geometrical devices. At each end is a deep border of four broad horizontal bands of red and blue triangles and diamonds, separated by narrower bands of the swastika key pattern. With a short wrap-fringe at each end.

Place of Origin

Bhutan (made)


ca. 1910 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Embroidered cotton with silk and cotton


Width: 142 cm, Length: 280 cm, Length: 109 in, Width: 55.5 in

Object history note

Given by Sir C A Bell, K.C.I.E., C.M.G. 1933. Given to the donor by Maharaja of Bhutan in 1910.

Descriptive line

Portion of a woman's robe (kushuthara) of embroidered cotton with silk and cotton, Bhutan, ca. 1910

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Myers D.K. and Bean S, From the Land of the Thunder Dragon, Textile Arts of Bhutan, London, 1994, pp.95, 227.

Production Note

Probably from East Central Bhutan




Weaving; Embroidering


Textiles; Embroidery; Women's clothes


South & South East Asia Collection

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