TALES 》 Paithani Cotton and Silk Sarees
Priceless intricacies of Paithani sarees
The art of weaving Paithani flourished during the 'Satvahana era' in the 200 B.C. The name "Paithani" is derived from small town "Paithan" is situated on the banks of the river Godavari located in Central India, Aurangabad district, Maharashtra state, India. The Nizam of Hyderabad was also an ardent admirer of Paithani sarees, the Peshwas took it upon themselves to promote the craft, and consequently, settled Paithani weavers in Yeola, which is now the manufacturing hub for Paithani. The Paithani saree is traditionally a part of the trousseau of every Maharashtrian bride. People here speak Marathi language and they lead simple life. There are many communities involved in weaving these beautiful sarees namely Khatri, Koshti, Swakula Sali are few known communities.
Maharashtrian or Marathi cuisine is just tempting but lip smacking and delicious too, little hot and spicy, the riches of the food and aroma, what more can I say!! If you are a vegan, than a must try Bharli vangi(stuffed eggplant) goes well with chapathi, roti, Kolhapur is as famous for its spicy mutton(goat meat) curries, popularly called ‘Matnacha rassa’ mutton Kolhapuri is red-hot mutton curry dish.
Paithani Sarees are hand woven saris preferred by the women of Maharashtra during festivals and important functions, these sarees are considered as one of the richest saris in India. Paithani saris are available in cotton and silk, made exquisitely from silk, cotton, and silver threads, To weave one basic Paithani saree it will take eight to ten days, the more detailing and intricate works it may even take one month to two years to weave one masterpiece Paithani Saree. These sarees are done on 'Handloom' made on a wooden loom. it's made from finest silk, multiple colors are used and it's just a it's a collectors piece. Paithani is completely handwoven fabric made from fine silk gold and silver threads(zari). The cost depends completely on the type of design, patterns, number of days required to weave and finally the amount of manual labour work involved in it. It is made from natural silk or cotton with precious gold and silver metal threads.
Paithani Sarees and Fabrics gets exclusive Intellectual Property rights through Geographical indication Act (GI). Earlier these sarees were produced only for sophisticated buyers. The main body of the saree is either plain, or full saree with intricate works, as well as spotted designs are seen.
Color palette: Generally they use traditional colors and darker and brighter shades are red, mehendi green, blue, yellow which are popular. While some resulting from the amalgamation of different colors such as neeligunji as sky blue, motiya known as peach pink, golden mango, pasila- blend of red and green, gujri-black and white blend, mirani-black and red blend, Kusumbi - violet red, royal red, vangi-aubegine purple, pophali known as yellow, Samprus as blend of green-red, uddani (a fainterblack), sankirodak as white, orphankhi as green-blue blend, firozi as white-red pale green, aboli as peach-pink and kaali chandrakala.
The Motifs: The oldest traditional Paithani designs are the royal bird known as muma parinda, lotus or kamal pushpa, muniya or tota-maina motif symbolizes the parrot, koyari motif known as mango, hans/hamsam/swan motif, mor known as peacock, chandrakor(moon) narali motif known as coconut, cotton bud known as rui phul, humaparindas (the pheasant), bangdimor (peacock in a bangle), anarvel known as pomegranate flower, kalas pakli(petal), behesti parinda (the bird of paradise), drakshavel (vine and grapes), akruti(almond shape) kuyri known as the paisleys, gokarna vel, asawalli(flowering vines) and instruments like tanpura, tabla, shehnai, sambal, fan known as pankha and few small motifs like circles, stars, kalas pakhhli, chandrakor, clusters of 3 leaves are few popularly known motifs.
The pallu: One can see 'single Pallu' and 'double pallu' the uniquesness in the pallu, meticulously crafted colourful pallu elaborate and exclusive detailing multiple peacocks(mor) setting lotus, asawali, a flower pot with a flowering plant, muthada, a geometrical design, ensemble very intricate muniya(parrot), some traditional bunch earthen pots , paisley flower vine, Ajanta lotus inspired by Ajanta caves, some are with Jacquard pallu with tissue type, asawali, a flower pot with a flowering plant, pleasant instrument pallu, meena work on the saree, muthada, a geometrical design, Laher this design is done in the centre to strengthen the zari, panja, a geometrical flower-like motif, Barwa, 12 strands of a ladder, 3 strands on each side these are few popular designs and motifs in pallu.
Different types of pallu(falling edge of the saree)
- Single Pallu/Padar (16-18" Pallu)
- Double Pallu/Padar (24-30" Pallu)
- Fancy Pallu Medium Pallu/Padar (18-22" Pallu)
- Fancy Pallu Large Pallu/Padar (24-30" Pallu)
- Heavy Brocade Pallu (30-36")
Varies types of border
- Kadiyal border
- Double-layer, triple-layer Muniya brocade border
- Muniya lace border
- Narali border
- Peacock border
- Pankha border
- Oblique border
- Geometry brocade border
- Golden band brocade border
- Temple brocade border
Mainly there are three techniques used in weaving this saree
- Split tapestry weave
- Dobe-tailing method
- Interlocking method
A delightful shopping: Paithani sarees, Pure Paithani Clutches, Paithani large handbag, Flat purses, Paithani jewerally box, Paithani mobile cases, duppattas, long kurtas, dhoti pants, sarong skirts, Paithani jackets, Paithani tie, Paithani sling bags and many more.
How to identify a authentic Paithani saree
- Genuine Paithani handloom saree, while checking look for reverse side of the saree the top and reverse side of the saree looks same looks exactly the same, border and pallu as well and there are no mesh of threads(no interlocking of threads) are noticed.
- Since the Paithani sarees are manually handwoven, no two Paithani sarees identically seen(exactly the same) there will be minor variations in the design.
- Authentic silk, when you burn the silk, it should smell like human hair.
- Paithani Saree, recommended only for dry clean only and roll press
- At home, if necessary iron the saree from back side(reverse side of the saree)
- Change the saree folds after every use.
- Paithani Saree should be kept and wraped in muslin cloth.
Kantha is one of the oldest forms of embroidery that originated in India. Earlier the Kantha sarees were usually draped by the women of West Bengal as to protect themselves against the cold weather. Kantha work is done by simple running stitches. Motifs such as fish, birds, ducks, trees, mountain, boat, footprint, animals, mosque, ratha, kantha motifs are very few examples.
During olden days these sarees were much in demand and loved by aristocratic and royal families. The traditional double ikat Patola which originates from Patan, small little town which is north of Ahmedabad in Gujarat state. Creating designs by tyeing knots on warp and weft, it takes around three to four months to prepare tie and dyed on warp and weft threads for one saree. Patola saree art was much of labour-intensive, with the combined effort of four weavers, it would take anywere around a six months to a year to weave a masterpiece saree from the scratch, its perseverance in doing it from the time of process of dying that is the reason it was too expensive, and was worn only by the royal and upperclass, who were able to pay for opulence.
Aroma of freshly brewed coffee at home is an inspiration for me in the morning, twenty nine years back, I recalled, my dad saying I bought this 'Wet grinder' from business trip on a way, to my mother and now I'm gone grey, recollecting the past hailing from business backdrop, traveling passionates me and my dad! Generally considered as traditional city, very fine cotton mills are here, well a typical saree made in Coimbatore region is called as 'Kovai Cora cotton' or 'Kovai Kora cotton' sarees. Due to extreme summers and humid climatic here, always one cannot think of wearing heavy silk or just cottons, this led to innovation of 'Coimbatore sico sarees' here. Seamless saree are a best choice of fashion garment, no matter what occasion you are in.
I am huge fan of Banjara jewelry which are antique yet collectables, their most flamboyant and mind-blowing costumes one goes crazy and highly appreciated, they still follow the rich and age old traditional art forms, which are been reflected in their art work, especially hand embroidery requires lot of time and patience and its laborious. These tribes speak Lamani language/Goar-boali it is also called as Banjari language. One can see Banjara tribes in Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat in these places they are widely spread across.
Lotus(Nelumbo Nucifera) is a very ancient water plant. Lotus is one of the popular motifs used in Indian textiles, motifs are generally inspired by nature, human figures, architecture from buildings and animals so on, this flower occupies a unique place in Indian art, textiles, poetry, literature, religions purposes and mythology of ancient India. Although this flower is rooted in mud, it continues to float on the water even after emerging from the mud, it remains unstained! The flower is represented with both its opening and closing petals indicating the ups and downs of life. In fact many Hindus are infatuated with lotus flowers, Gorgeous Lotus are called by varies names such as Kamal, Tavare-gadde, Motunkamal, Utpala, Pundarika, Tamarai and Padma and are found in white, pink, red, purple and blue are found in Asian countries.
One of the most traditional sarees which I had seen apart from Ilkal saree is Hubli cotton sarees, due extreme humidity generally localities adore this saree for daily bases. This is one of the simple weaves but I totally in love with this saree, the texture of the saree is so soft due to the high count of cotton yarn used.
A beautiful city in Anantapur district, Andhra Pradesh state, India known for its renowned cotton, splendorous silk weaving industries and leather puppets, Dharmavaram. According to the history notes, name of the city Dharmavaram ,has been named after 'Dharmamba', who was the mother of Sri Kriyasakthi Odeyar (person, who built the first tank in the region). The economy of the town is dependent on the weaving industry. Natives of this place speak Telugu(regional language). Dharmavaram sarees is been registered as one of the geographical indication from Andhra Pradesh.
Inspired by Game of Thrones this season, what a way to start, chuckles! Their black and white squares that resembles a chess board, oh yeah I am talking about Pasapali handloom sarees, from Bargarh district of Odisha, the name Pasapali is derived from pasa or gambling games using chess board, these gorgeous sarees have intricate checks patterns of contrast colors resembling the chess boards which gives it such name and traditional square design. Its a feast for any saree connoisseur to have one. Masterpieces sarees are woven in the regions of Barpali, Sonepur and Baunshri.
Located on the banks of mighty river Brahmaputra, from few years back Sualkuchi Handloom industry is center for weaving and labor intensive industry for weaving and encompasses cotton textile, silk textile and Khadi fabrics as well and known as the Manchester of the East, Kamrup district of Assam. Sualkuchi is heavenly kingdom for weaving and the looms are found in almost very home in the villages of Assam and depending on the design, patterns and complexity it would take around six or more days to weave one beautiful masterpiece saree. The economy of this place is mainly dependent of handlooms, not only Tanti community of Tantipara are weaving this craft but also other communities like Garo community of Assam, fishermen and Brahmin communities also are engaged in weaving, the official languages are Assamese, Bodo and Bengali and renowned for Assam tea and Assam silk.
Craving for summer fruits is a must for some like me haha Peaches, the juicy Mangoes, cooling Watermelons what not and what about pairing a perfect outfit the saree for this season is also very important how many of you agree with me? So let's get started, guess what today I would be taking to West Bengal? The guesswork starts ... is it Baluchari, Tant, Begampuri sarees or the brilliantly woven Jamdani, nope it's one of the artistic weave called Khesh sarees.
Tamil Nadu, the famous Mulberry silk called Kanchipuram Silks apart from this one can see magnificent craft called Toda embroidery, which is locally called as Pukhoor. This beautiful embroidery looks very refined as if it is done in a machine but done by beautiful hands, the hues such as charcoal black and pomegranate red with white canvas, what a blend of shades with impressive thread art, its mind-blowing!
Chanderi town is a highly renowned for its rich heritage, surrounded by hills southwest of the Betwa River in Ashoknagar district, Madhya Pradesh state, India Well known for the handwoven traditional sarees, these are mostly popular for the elite class and favorable choice of Queens in India as they are a bit expensive and one can see major center of Jain culture. Artisan community involved in the production of Chanderi silk, a diverse mix of various communities namely Kohlis and the Muslim Julaha community. Traditional weaving culture was available during 13th century, Initially, the weavers were Muslims, later in 1350 the Koshti weavers from Jhansi migrated to Chanderi and settled here, during the Mughal period, Chanderi fabric business been recognize and started booming. The production of Chanderi has been protected by India as a Geographic Indication (GI).
Magnificent Pochampally saree is called by varies names such as Pogudubandhu or Pochampalli Ikat, is a saree crafted in Bhoodan Pochampally, Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district, Telangana State, India. Pochampally, the village was renamed to Bhoodan Pochampally. This small traditional handloom village magnificently showered and surrounded by hills, lush green fields, temples, Pochampally makes up for an exciting destination to spend one’s heart. This village is around 45Km away from Hyderabad.Telangana is one of the ancient Ikat weaving centers in India.Pochampally Ikat sarees was mainly popularized during 80's.Pochampally silk saree boasts of blending comfort and popularly known as tie and dye weave, one can see century old traditional looms here.
Floating boats, taking a holy dip in 'Narmada river' and cleansing mind, body and soul, I feel rejuvenated, moving ahead to Omkareshwar(deity Shiva) temple, how blessed I'm. This is a religious town and beautiful city lies on the north bank of Narmada river, Maheshwar is a city in Khargone district of Madhya Pradesh state, in central India. The word Maheshwar in Hindi means 'Great God'. People here speak Hindi and it's official language. The climatic conditions here, is hot dry summer and cool or relatively dry during winter. This beautiful city is known for it's finest handloom fabric. Maheshwar has been a centre of handloom weaving since the 5th century.
This beautiful garment is worn by women across India and Bangladesh. The origin of these sarees and roots dates back in Bengal, later produced in Murshidabad, but currently 'Bishnupur' town of 'Bankura district' and its surrounding places of West Bengal. Baluchar town from where it derives its name as Baluchari sarees. This marvelous place is famous for its exquisite terracotta temples and Malla Shree Krishna Raslilla. Beautifully made 'terracotta craft' is well known in this place. People here predominantly speak Bengali.
I was listening to Keith Urban-Little Bit Of Everything. How pleasant it is ha? I want little bit gold, earthy cotton and lavish silk of everything, flashed me glorious Gadwal saree, which has little bit of everything! Gadwal a place known for harmonious coexistence of the cultures, situated between the rivers 'Tungabhadra' and 'Krishna' of Mahbubnagar district, Telangana state, India.