07 November, 2018

Diwali 2018 in Benarasi Katan silk saree

This is what I wore for Diwali today. I have worn it here before. It is another Banarasi Katan silk saree. 
Katan-Pure silk sarees that are created with beautiful patterns and are produced using hand looms (ancient times), now Powerloom and rapier looms are also used.

What’s in the name? I would argue that there is a lot in the name. If I say Varanasi, I think of pilgrimage or a Temple city with serene ghats on the banks of river Ganga. If I say “Banarasi”, some think of a betel leaf/Paan delicacy and for saree lovers like me, “Benarasi” resonates with majestic & exquisite sarees.
Banarasi (or Benarasi) is a generic name for sarees from Varanasi.
There are various distinct saree names, like Brocade, Jamdani, Tissue, Jamawar Tanchoi, Jangla for sarees made in Banaras. Each type is defined by the quality and weight of the silk yarn, the gold yarn and the overall design of the saree.
There’s no debating the fact that Banaras has been an important centre for weaving since time immemorial.  In 5th and 6th century BC exquisitely woven cotton fabrics from Kashi became the most sought-after commodity all over the world. In the ancient time, Banaras was famous for the weaving of cotton saree but slowly switched over to silk weaving, during the Mughal period around 14th-century weaving of brocades with intricate designs using gold & Silver threads was the speciality of Banaras. What we see today is an amalgamation of Mughal & Hindu – motifs, a technique with Indian style of weaving was created confluence of Hindu and Mughal aesthetics
Like old wine in new bottle, the real zari and Brocade sarees that are a speciality of the city have reinvented themselves with every era without losing out on their original charm. The jacquard technique also went through a variety of changes during the Italian Renaissance along with Chinese, Indian and Persian influences in motifs over time.
Material and Variations: Categorized into four distinct varieties based on fabrics, namely pure silk (katan), organza (kora) with zari and silk, georgette and shattir. Of these, the pure silk variety is the most renown one.
Katan-Pure silk sarees: Katan, a thread, prepared by twisting different numbers of silk fabrics as per requirements, gives a firm structure to the background fabric.
It is a plain-woven fabric with pure silk threads and consists of two threads twisted together. Katan is mostly used for the warp of light fabrics.
The names of the exclusive Banarasi saris are kept as per the motifs or patterns are woven in them. Based on design, motifs or pattern woven these sarees are classified into Jangla, Jamawar Tanchoi, Tissue, Cutwork, Vaskat, and Butidar.
This saree is Butidar.
BUTIDAR: The butidar saree is a rich kind of the Banaras Saree in high traditional pattern and motif of the design locally popularized such as Angoor Bail, Gojar Bail, Luttar Bail, Khulta bail, Baluchar bail, Mehrab bail, Doller butti,Ashraffi Butti, Latiffa Butti, Reshem Butti Jhummar Butti,Jhari Butta, Kalma Butti,Patti Butti, Lichhi Butti, Latiffa Butta, Kairy Kalanga Thakka Anchal, Mehrab Anchal, Baluchar Butta with the use of real gold and silver Jari and Katan silk in the weft.
“Older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend—and looks twice as old as all of them put together.”- Mark Twain on the city of Varanasi.”In the city as old as time, with a weaving tradition that is equally historic and embedded so deep in the culture and conscience, timeless Banarasi sarees embolden generations of women with their ever-elegant finesse, regality & sensuality.

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