The Renaissance was a transformative period in European history, marked by a revival of intellectual and artistic pursuits. During the Renaissance, clothing served as a social class indicator. It was during this time that the Kani shawl entered the European market. Not only was the garment practical and aesthetically pleasing, but its oriental origins, clear status as a luxury item, texture, and patterning enabled it to permeate European high fashion. Patronage by Empress Josephine of France, and later Queen Victoria, solidified its popularity.
These shawls are woven using one of the most complex and oldest weaving techniques – Twill tapestry. The most surprising fact is that every Kani artisan can weave only half an inch every day. Their patience level is truly remarkable.
Kani is given the status of Geographical Indication (GI), entitling it to the right to protect its originality. This means that no other country or state has the right to produce or copy such shawls.