A lexicon of weaves and handloom sarees

Some of the well-known Indian handloom sarees include, Baluchari sarees, Kanchipuram sarees, Tussar and Benarasi sarees

Author: Khushigupta | Updated: April 19, 2016 1:28 IST



 Image courtesy: The Red Earth


Weaving the magic of centuries-old art, Indian artisans and weavers blend folk tales, myths and identities turning them into cultural masterpieces. Of late, the traditional weaves with their fine and intricate textures have managed to captivate the attention of many A -list fashion designers. With a focus on recycling and regional textiles, the contemporary handlooms boast of modern techniques but the old world elegance remains untouched.

Some of the well-known Indian handloom sarees include Baluchari sarees, Kanchipuram sarees, Tussar and Banarasi sarees. Below we list diverse weaves and handloom sarees from various states.



BANARASI BROCADE SILK SAREES are made from the finest fabrics employing techniques similar  to jacquard with a raised pattern or floral design. The background material is woven in silver zari and patterns in gold worked in the style of minakari. Each saree it can take anywhere between 14 days to six months to complete. These handlooms are passed on from generations and are a part of the bridal trousseau.

Image source: www.saree.gallery



TANCHOI SILK SAREES is weaved with elaborate techniques, creating the effect of embossing on silk.  The weave was introduced by three Chinese brothers to India. Figures of birds, flowers and trees are commonly used in these sarees. The pallu is richly decorated with large figures of peacocks, flower baskets and hunting scenes. 

 PATOLA are a double Ikat woven saree, which is very exclusive and expensive usually made from silk, made in Patan. These sarees are renowned for their colorful diversity and geometrical style combined with folk motifs.

PARSI GARA  is a crepe silk or georgette saree  embroidered with single or double silk thread. Mostly, the base of  the saree is always a dark color and the silk embroidery off-white .



CHANDERI COTTON AND SILK SAREES feature silk thread used for warp and fine cotton thread for the weft, with a richly l zari border. Checks and floral patterns are popular in these sarees and they are popular for their sheer texture, lightweight and glossy transparency. 



TUSSAR SILK SAREE or the Bhagalpuri silk sarees made from a non-mulberry silk variety and hand woven cotton Mulmuls. The Mulmuls of Madhubani, like the paintings, are embossed in these sarees which are popular in the areas of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Bhagalpur. 



DACCAI WEAVES saree is famous for the figured, finely woven mulmul. This saree consists of different colored threads intricately woven. The technique also developed in Uttar Pradesh, The style of textile known as Jamdani.

 BALUCHARI WEAVE SILK saree flaunt a large pallu with designer patterns on the center. Figures from the folk tales or paintings on pallu and buttas on the body are some peculiar features on this saree.



ORRISA IKAT SAREES with their resist dyeing technique and brocade borders and pallu are called the “poetry on the loom” essentially because of the weaving methods. 

Image source: gaatha.com



The Paithani sarees of Maharashtra consists of Zari thread weave and  are one of the prized heirlooms worn on special occasions.  These sarees feature deep colors with contrasting borders with  dot motifs. Complicated patterns of birds, such as swans, peacocks, parrots, floral designs are intricately and delicately woven




KERALA  COTTON SILK sarees are plain cotton or silk with zari border and pallav. The fancier sarees with intricate patterns are worn on festivities. 




POCHAMPALLI IKAT SAREE is one of the most popular handloom sarees with alluring geometric patterns on Ikat. 



NARAYANPETSILK SAREES are an ode to the deity Narayanpet in Telangana. The typical traditional Zari check patterns on the body, represent the devotional ethos of the weaving communities of that place. 



KANJIVARAM SILK SAREES are globally renowned and are generally worn on special occasions and festivities. Using zari (gold thread) and pure mulberry, these sarees narrate stories from the epics like Ramayana and famous Indian paintings. 

 Tell us about regional weaves and handloom sarees you know in comments below!


Related Tags : weaves of india, handloom sarees, wedding news
This entry was posted in Lehengas On .
Posted on: April 19, 2016 weaves of india, handloom sarees, wedding news


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