About the Chanderi Sarees
Chanderi sarees date back to the 12th and 13th centuries and originate from the town of Chanderi in Madhya Pradesh, India. Initially chanderi silks were used in weaving ‘khilats’, ceremonial robes given to someone as a mark of honour. The material was thus very expensive. The silk showcased it’s beauty with its softness, transparency, and fringes embroidered with heavy golden thread.
The process of weaving a Chanderi has been practiced over many generations. It has created a long lineage of skilled weavers who cannot be replaced. Being one of the jewels of India’s textile industry it holds a special place in every wearer’s collection. Originally, the fabric is woven with hand-spun cotton yarn which can be fine upto 300 counts. This fine count cotton is extracted from a special root called Kolikanda. It is light yet strong. Warp and wefting is carried out to produce this piece of art. The thread count in warp process can range from 4,000 to 17,000 depending upon the quality required.
Patterns and Styles
The butis motifs on the handloom are made with various types of needles and are coated with gold, silver or copper dust. Weaving these sarees is a very tedious process and it requires two weavers to sit side by side on the same loom. The yarn used for weaving was earlier coloured only with natural dyes, but today both chemical and natural dyes are used. The entire process can take over 3 days, sometimes even more depending on the complexity.
Known for it’s transparency and sheer texture, these sarees are set apart by their lightweight and glossy texture. Chanderi’s offer motifs like gold coins, churi, bundi, keri, phul-patti, akhrots, paan eent, and many others. These hand woven motifs on extra wefts sets the Chanderi a class apart from it’s sister silks. Chanderi silks can be roughly bought around Rs. 5,000 and the price increases quickly depending on the complexity of the design. A stand-out feature of chanderi silks is that a handwoven Chanderi will always have an uneven surface and will be available in soft hues.
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