Chikankaari is a delicate art of embroidery that has become a major commercial activity in the city of Lucknow and its environs.
Though the origin of Chikan work has not been affirmed, perhaps it is the corrupt form of the Persian word 'chikin' / 'chikeen' or 'sequin' which means a kind of cloth wrought with needlework. Amongst the many theories regarding the origin of this magnificent art, the most believable is that it was brought by the Mughals from Persia.
Chikan embroidery today is synonymous to the lifestyle of Lucknow. No wardrobe is complete without this in Lucknow. The art has survived the ravages of time to stands tough till date. Some artisans achieved perfection to the level that even a needle could not pass through the fine jaali (net) woven by way of Chikan embroidery. The grace that the Chikan garment promises is incomparable to any other dressing style. Its simplicity and comfort is its beauty.