India’s rich cultural heritage is the reason why the country has a history of handlooms. Every corner of India speaks for its own weaving and draping style. We have about 60 kinds of weaving patterns originating from rural India alone. There is a range of quintessential Indian handloom beyond the usual gota-patti, half-saris, embellished gowns and subtle sheers that we come across.
Akshay Jain, Managing Partner, Greenways – A legacy of 77 years, lists down five cities offering the textile brilliance you would ask for in a classic five-yard-saree:
The stunning texture of Muga Silk, known for its outrageous sturdiness and gold-tone, was once held only for the royal families. It is acquired from the semi-trained multivoltine silkworm, Antheraea Assamensis. These silkworms feed on the leaves of Som and Soalu plants and the silk delivered from them is known for its polished surface and strength. The sparkle of the texture is said to improve after each wash making it an item that will last you a lifetime.
Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu
As per folklore, Kanchi silk weavers are the relatives of Sage Markanda, the ace weaver of Gods who would weave tissue from lotus fiber. It is woven from fine mulberry silk string which originates in South India and the zari that originates in Gujarat. The border shading and pattern are typically unique from the rest of the saree. Kanchipuram silk is recognized by its wide contrasting borders which could have checks, stripes or flowers.
Often known to be one of the most beautiful fabrics and sarees of India, the Masuria Malmal or Kota Doria is recognized by its geometric designs called “khats”. Woven in pure cotton and silk in various densities, the saree is abundantly adored and loved for its delicacy that holds a special place in every wardrobe.
A real Paithani saree is probably the most extravagant handloom piece you can possess. With its unpredictable themes and very fine silk yarns, a unique Paithani is unquestionable to have in every handloom expert’s wardrobe. A Paithani saree would have a contrasting color tone to the gold zari laden pallu. The pallu, for the most part, has a peacock theme and is viewed as a sign of the Paithani style of work.
Bhoodan Pochampally, Telangana
Pochampally ikat is a sort of silk that was discovered in a community of Andhra Pradesh, Bhoodan Pochampally. Named as the “Silk City of India”, the town is known for giving the world a texture that can beat any other form of ikat in the entire nation. The saree is known to have a blending comfort which makes it perfect for a first-timer. One of the most popular patterns of the saree is the entrancing geometric design all over giving it an ideal daze-y feel.