Embroidered motifs on suzani often had symbolic meaning. The ewers (pouring vessels) seen on this piece are symbols of hospitality since, traditionally, a young woman or child poured water from a ewer over the hands of arriving guests as a sign of welcome.
Cotton was hand-woven before factory cloth was imported from Russia, and indeed many of the early suzani quilts were embroidered on hand-loomed cotton.
Quilted and embroidered suzani
IQM, Gift of the Robert and Ardis James Foundation