Saree or Sari, is a long strip of unstiched cloth usually 5.5 meters (Five to nine yards) long which is draped by women from the Indian subcontinent around their body from the bust to the toe. The Historical evidence of Saree is seen from the remains of the Indus Valley Civilization, which flourished during 2800–1800 BC around the western part of the Indian subcontinent. The earliest known depiction of the Saree in the Indian subcontinent is the statue of an Indus Valley priest wearing a drape. Cotton was first cultivated and woven in Indian subcontinent around 5th million BC. Dyes used during this period are still in use, particularly indigo, lac, red madder and turmeric. Silk was woven around 2450 BC and 2000 BC.
The Saree has evolved from it’s predecessor Poshak, which is a three-piece attire known as Antariya lower garment, Uttariya veil worn over shoulder or head and Stanapatta a chestband, which finds mention in Sanskrit literature and Buddhist Pali literature during 6th century B.C. Ancient Antariya closely resembled dothi wrap in the “fishtail” version which was passed through legs, covered the legs loosely and then flowed into a long, decorative pleats at front of the legs. It further evolved into Bhairnivasani skirt, today known as ghagri and lehenga. Uttariya was a shawl-like veil worn over shoulder or head, it evolved into what is known today known as dupatta and ghoongat. Like wise, Stanapatta evolved into choli by 1st century A.D. Between 2nd century B.C to 1st century A.D, Antariya and Uttariya was merged to form a single garment known as Saree mentioned in Pali literature, which served the purpose of two garments in one-piece.
The Indian women drape Saree around their body in a variety of ways which is different from region to region, though predominantly the basics remain the same. The resulting garment can be practical working attire or an elegant ceremonial gown, depending on the type of fabric used and the style of draping. While women wear the Saree, men wear a version of the wrapped unstiched garment called a dhoti. Saree is a casual wear mostly worn daily by majority of Indian female is one of the oldest known items of clothing that is still in use. Sarees were mentioned in the Vedas, the ancient sacred literature of the Hindu religion, which has been dated back to 3000 b.c.e., and many people believe that Sarees may have been worn even earlier.
Like the Greeks and Romans who followed them, the ancient people of India mainly wore garments that were wrapped and draped, rather than sewn. This was not because they did not know the art of sewing—early Indian people were experts in fine weaving and embroidery—but because they preferred the flexibility and creativity that draped clothing allowed. Loose, flowing garments were practical in the hot climate of southern Asia, and the Saree, woven of cotton or silk, was both cool and graceful. Sarees come in a variety of fabrics from rough cotton to exquisite Silk, simple and intricate designs, traditional and contemporary motifs, traditional embroidary works, special hand works, variety of screen and block prints which decides the price, and makes it affordable to common man and equally expensive and elegant for the rich.
Over the years, women traditionally wore various types of regional handloom Sarees made of silk, cotton, ikkat, block-print, embroidery and tie-dye textiles. Most sought after brocade silk sarees are Banasari, Kanchipuram, Paithani, Pochampally, Tussar, Mysore, Uppada, Baghalpuri, Balchuri, Maheshwari, Chanderi, Mekhela, Mooga, Ghicha, Narayan pet and Eri etc. traditionally worn for festive and formal occasions.
Silk Ikat and cotton sarees known as Patola, Pochampally, Bomkai, Khandua, Sambalpuri, Gadwal, Berhampuri, Bargarh, Jamdani, Tant, Mangalagiri, Guntur, Narayan pet, Chanderi, Maheshwari, Nuapatn, Tussar, Ilkal, Kotpad and Manipuri were worn for both festive and everyday attire. Tie-dyed and block-print sarees known as Bandhani, Leheria/Leheriya, Bagru, Ajrakh, Sungudi, Kota Dabu/Dabu print, Bagh and Kalamkari were traditionally worn during monsoon season. Gota Patti is popular form of traditional embroidery used on saris for formal occasions, various other types of traditional folk embroidery such mochi, pakko, kharak, suf, kathi, phulkari and gamthi are also commonly used for both informal and formal occasion.
Today, modern fabrics like polyester, Chiffon, georgette and charmeuse are also commonly used.
At rareitis, we bring you popular Sarees from across India, from all regions and states. Saree is traditionally hand woven and special emphasis is laid on handlooms. Handloom fabrics and weavers are an Integral Part of the cultural Heritage and tradition of India. It provides lot of employment avenues in the rural India and keeps this traditional art alive in the thriving Powerloom Industry. Handloom Sarees come in a variety of design and handwork. One of the biggest advantages of handloom is that each finished product can be unique. It can be weaved with high end materials like Gold, silver etc in the form of fine zari. The cotton used is hand made, soft and light weight making the end product immensely comfortable to wear. handloom finish is not smooth and linear as a powerloom product and it is this textured finish which gives it’s unique appeal and demand globally.
eco-friendly. Natural dyed.