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Everything You Need to Know About Pullas in Himachal Pradesh

Crafts and culture have an exceptional value in the states of India. No doubt, how many years pass away, but the ancestor’s culture will somehow continue generation after generation. Himachal Pradesh is among those states where people are very affectionate about its craft. Their difference in dressing form makes them unique among the nation. Pullas are also among those crafted hand creation which is used as footwear in the region. It is a particular type of footwear with a beautiful design that helps spread cultural vibes specialists for tourists. This post will look upon all the details about Pullas in Himachal Pradesh with their importance in the state.

What Are Pullas?

Pullas are also known as Himachali chappal or footwear. It is a handicraft product made by the people of the inner regions of Jalori and Bashley.

They make use of the natural fiber from the bark of wild trees to create the beautiful design of Pullas. The method of footwear is done by adding goat hair on the upper portion.

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It helps in bringing more bright colours to the footwear. The base of Pullan is made with Bang fiber and bark.

The people of Himachal are very experienced in constructing the collection. It is available in varying sizes and acts as warm footwear for winter.

Why Should You Buy Pullas in Himachal?

Most places in Himachal are surrounded by snow. The primary purpose of tourists visiting the Himachal is to explore the beautiful hill stations and snow lands.

People living in the region used to wear Pullas for thousands of years. But, the only difference which arises in making Pullas is the beautiful design.

These handcrafted slippers provide much comfort to walk on the snow rather than artificial wear. It also gives a different experience of walking in the drizzle.

Therefore, people visiting the snow areas prefer to buy this product to lend them to the site’s environment.

img src: The Wanderer

There is also a religious belief in Hindu mythology of not wearing leather boots and slippers inside the temple. In such cases, Pullans can be a better option for tourists to walk inside the temple or any religious places without opening the shoes.

It is used mainly by monasteries and priests working on the temples. Being a natural product, it is regarded as the symbol of purity according to religious belief. Many royal families from the regional dynasty still used to wear Pullas on their houses rather than artificial slippers.

Materials Used for the Handcrafting of Pullas:

It is made with the help of stem, barks, hemp, grasses, etc. Some of the significant substances used for its practice includes the following:

  • Marijuana stem fibers: The stem fiber is used to make the base of the slipper. It helps to provide rigid support to the body and protect from falling in the slippery region of ice.
img src: Wikipedia
  • Jute base: It can also be used as an alternative for making the base. But, these are useful to walk in a dry region. It is best for protecting feet against cold. The only disadvantage of wearing jute type of Pullas is that it doesn’t get dried quickly.
  • Bhang/Cannabis grass: The grass of this plant is used for designing the slipper. The dried form of grass doesn’t get decayed and lasts longer on the base of the slipper.

How Pullas Are Prepared?

The above resources are used for making the hand-picked product. These materials are present in abundant quantity in the upper valley of the state. People from these places transport this raw material to other regions of the state to sustain their livelihood. It is equipped in the following method:

  • The grass of cannabis is cut and dried before stitching it into the Pullas. They are then rolled and stretched into long fibers to increase the tensile strength.
  • These fibers are spun with the help of a spindle called Takli. It doesn’t break easily at the time of walking on snows.
img src: SHILP Studio
  • The bark is then given shapes of the foot with the help of traditional tools to make it fit into the legs. Different size of Pullas is available to sustain the demand of the population.
  • In the end, wool is stitched on the top of the base to give a beautiful design to the slipper.

Different Varieties of Pullas in Himachal

  • Jute Chappal pula: In this footwear, the woolen base remains the same, but the above layer of the slipper is made up of jute, which helps keep the leg warm in winter. It is mainly preferred to walk on dry grounds.
  • Woolen pula: The same thing also applies in the making of woolen footwear, and the outer layer is stitched with woolen material to make it more beautiful. It is used for wearing in festive occasions celebrated on the state.
img src: SHILP Studio
  • Grass pula: It is the most robust material helpful to walk on ice. The bark used to make the slipper base is very strong and doesn’t let anyone slip on the ground. The design of the bottom planes kept little rough to increase fiction while walking on the snow.

Where Can You Buy Pullas?

Pullas are primarily sold in every market of Himachal Pradesh. It is the most widely wear material in the state. So, it is known to everyone staying in the region, especially in the upper areas of Himachali’s hills.

img src: Bhuttico 

But, nowadays, the product is also available for purchase on e-commerce websites like Amazon, Flipkart, and different regional online sellers of Himachal. People who have decided to travel to Himachal for spending holidays can also buy it from the beginning of the journey.

Final Words

The handcrafted product takes us much closer to the earthen culture. It is the reason why people choose it to get the same experience of living like the previous generation. The development of technology has taken humans very far from the old products. But, states like Himachal have still maintained their culture for hundreds of years to make the people remember the lifestyle of earlier days. Pullas in Himachal Pradesh are among such an exceptional product which people still prefer to buy to enjoy the cultural journey of history.

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