Pothi: The Binding of Bahi Khata Notebooks

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Wrapped in red color and white stitches, the Bahi Khata Notebooks are an integral part of the business community, especially in Gujarat and Rajasthan. The Bahi Khata Notebook makers customize the pages for the purpose of accounting by crimping the pages and giving a fold to the entire paper in a subtle way. By folding the paper, they make columns for debit and credit, thus, avoiding the needs of ink drawn tables.

It is quite interesting to know that since the inception of Bahi Khata, the stitching over it has remained unchanged. The use of sewing machine is the only thing that has changed in these years. The combining of pages for accounting and stitching or the Pothi Binding, in a way, supports the small scale of women who earn by stitching the fabric cover of the Bahi Khatas on the sewing machine.

Inside the Pothi Binding

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The first stage in making the Bahi Khata Notebook is the stitching of Fabric Cover into a pillow cover like shape. This helps in inserting the cardboard in it. Both of them are then fixed together with the white curvilinear stitches that the notebooks are renowned for. Be it stitching from hand or stitching from a machine, the dashed pattern has remained unchanged till date. This is probably because it is faster to make and gives better hold to the fabric cover as well as the cardboard.

Once the outer cover is ready and set, cut paper is folded into sections and pressed with a wooden folder. Sections are then hand stitched with needle and thread in the middle, and they are then joined with other sections at the spine. Further, they are attached to the cover. Certain craftsmen and binders add an elegant or decorative paper at the beginning and end of the notebook. Once everything, is in place, they are stuck together with the help of glue and left to dry in the open.

Wrapping Up

Today, even when computerized accounting systems are giving a tough competition to Bahi Khata Notebooks, it is quite popular among a large number of tradesmen. Also, the craftsmen are not leaving any stone unturned to keep the notebooks alive. With a large number of colored papers, fabrics, patchwork, Zari, etc. Bahi Khata Notebooks are foraying in the lives of artists, writers, students and all those who need something to write on.


Source: www.Gatha.com