Shami Lanmi and Wankhei phi

in Image Gallery
Published on: 28 May 2018

Richana Khumanthem

Richana Khumanthen is the Creative Director and founder of the handloom-based brand, Khumanthem (Imphal). With a background in fashion design from NIFT, New Delhi and Nottingham Trent University, UK, Richana strives to bring the textiles of North-east India, and Manipur in particular to the forefront. Her motto is to bridge the gap between local artisans and consumers. She works with handloom textiles to create contemporary silhouettes.

Shami Lanmi is one of the decorative cloths traditionally used in Manipur. It is a special shawl that started being made during the time of King Meidinggu Loyungba (1074–1122 CE), who introduced a division of labour according to sagei/yumnak (surname). Kings used to give away these shawls as rewards. The images here show the motifs embroidered on the shawl.


Wankhei phi on the other hand is a delicate cloth used by Meitei women of Manipur to drape the upper part of their body, like a shawl. It is used by women on special occasions. The images here show how it is made and the different motifs woven into it.