22 May, 2011

Different Indian saris

There are innumerable fashion enthusiasts, bloggers collectors, who proclaim their love and fetish for shoes.
Well I have a HUGE fetish for collecting Saris. Traditional, exquisite Saris of different regions of India. In the upcoming posts, I will be covering Saris from different states and parts of India. So stay tuned in.
There is a wide variety of sarees worn across India.  Like Kolkata cotton sarees is different from the Gadwal cotton saree of Pune, similarly Garhwal silk saree is different from South silk saree. The beauty, grace and elegance of a woman wrapped in saree is unmatched to any other woman dress in any dress.  

Saris from Western India

1. Bandhani Sari
This dyeing style hails from Rajasthan and Gujarat. Bandhani as the name means the Tie and dye. These are sarees created by dyeing the cloth in such a manner that many small resist-dyed ‘spots’ produce elaborate patterns over the fabric. Most common patterns in bandhni are dyed in the two contrasting colors. These patterns are normally on the border and the Pallu. The most common of such dyeing pattern is Garchola. It is the traditional wedding saree of Hindus and Jains. 

2. Patola Saree
This is the most time consuming process. It is one of the famous saree created in western region of India. The thread used in weaving saree is usually dyed in five colors in both warp and weft before weaving. The most expensive style in this patola saree is the Double ikat patola saree and is always rare. A cheaper alternative to double ikat patola is the silk ikat saree developed in Rajkot (Gujarat) that creates patola and other geometric designs in the weft threads only.

3. Gujarati Brocade 
These Gujarati Sarees are extremely expensive and are virtually extinct. The main distinguishing characteristics of Gujarati Brocade Saree are: Butis (circular designs) woven into the field in the warp direction instead of the weft, resulting in their lying horizontally instead of vertically on the saree when draped. Floral designs woven in coloured silk, against a golden (woven zari) ground fabric. Although such ‘inlay’ work is a common feature in many western Deccan silks, the Gujarati work usually has leaves, flowers and stems outlined by a fine dark line.

Image credit: http://www.vam.ac.uk/images/image/53909-large.jpg

4. Embroidered Tinsel Sarees 
In earlier days The Rabaris amd Sodha Rajputs of western region had an embroidered tradition. This tradition was known as Tinsel. Soon it became a famous embroidery pattern and was used on sarees. Since then it is usually used on sarees. The Mughal Emperors were the ones who introduced zardozi (the gold and silver gilt thread embroidery technique) to India. The saree with zardozi work is today an inextricable part of bridal clothing. The other popular forms of tinsel embroidery are Balla tinsel and khari work. They are the cheaper variations available in metallic embroidery.

Image credit: http://www.jozan.net/2007/images/India-textiles/Block-Kharhi-print-with-tinsel.jpg

5. Paithani
This pattern of saree originated in the State of Maharashtra and is named after a village near Aurangabad. These sarees are now woven in the town of Yeola also. These sarees use an enormous amount of labour, skill and sheer expanse of material in the process of creation and the final piece is worth to be a piece of your wardrobe. Distinctive motifs such as parrots, trees and plants are woven into the saree. The bright shades of the saree vary from vivid magenta, peacock greens and purples. The border and the pallu are usually in contrast with the saree color. In the pallav, the base is in gold and the pattern is done in silk, giving the whole saree an embossed look.

6. Chanderi and Maheshwari 

The Chanderi sarees of Madhya Pradesh are very light and are appropriate for scorching summers. There sarees are made in either cotton or silk and the patterns are taken from the Chanderi temples. The Maheshwari sarees are usually green or purple in color with a zari border and like chanderi sarees these sarees are also made in cotton and silk. 

7. Gadwal cotton Saree
Gadwal sarees, not to be confused with Garhwal Sarees of Garhwal, are made in cotton in a style influenced by the Banarasi sarees. Here the base of the saree is usually plain or in self-checks and the borders are either Resham (silk) or Zari. Generally copper or Gold dipped Zari is used in these sarees. The popular motifs used in these sarees are rudraksh and peacock. The color combination of the base and the border is in contrast. Traditional colours for these sarees are earth shades of browns, greys and off-whites. However, it is believed that the bright color Gadwal sarees were introduced later on for the North Indian buyers.

6 Yards of Elegance in wonderful variety of Fabrics


  1. good information on sarees good know about the differences and how the sari is made

  2. Lovely detailed write up about some of my favourite sarees. I particularly like bandhni and patola.

  3. Nice to know about your FETISH.lolz.
    Yes,yes,yes I want to know each and everything about sarees.So I am fully and completely tuned it.Start the show.hehe..
    I loved this line of yours-'The beauty, grace and elegance......'.Nodding my head in complete agreement with you.
    Bandini looks good.
    Nice work on Patola too.
    Brocade is also nice.
    Tinsel also.
    wow..Paithani looks the best so far.
    Chanderi is nice too.
    Gadwal saree is ok.
    Out of all these I liked Paithani the most if you want it for special occassons and chanderi for everyday use.
    Thanks for providing such a wealth of information.