Banaras, also known as Varanasi, in ancient times, was called Kashi. The town is one of the holiest places in India and pilgrimage site for the majority of Indians following different religions and sects. It is an utmost picturesque town on the banks of holy river Ganga. The crowded lanes, delicious street food, wandering sages with dreadlocks, and warm weather, Banaras is a cultural spot. The place is exclusively known for handloom textiles and creative handicrafts. Banarasi sarees are the most popular thing in this crowded location.
Banarasi Sarees – Every woman wants one!
Banarasi sarees are extensively used in the bride’s trousseau. These sarees are generally worn by women for special occasions like weddings and other auspicious functions. Saree is the traditional wear of Indian ladies as it is said that it projects the beauty of a woman in a very vivid way.
The production and design methods of these wonderful sarees in Banaras began way back in the 17th century when the designers and workers from Gujarat shifted here. With the amalgamation of various methods of weaving intricate patterns, silk as well as gold brocades, innovate designs began to be undertaken by the industry, the sarees grew exceedingly beautiful and famous in the coming time period.
Various Decorative Materials to make a Saree
Banarasi sarees are one of the very prominent attire in India. It is every Indian woman’s wish to have one of the classic designs in her wardrobe. They are well renowned for their delicate embroidery, silk, and incandescent zari, and gold brocades. Some of these sarees, because of they being zari clad and engraving, tend to become heavy. But they are still very coveted. The pallu or the edge patch of sarees are decorated with floral and abstract patterned forms. The rest of the expanse either has a minimalistic design or is rendered plain. The cloth of the saree which is silk, it attributes a very charming sheen to the garment. In addition, the other decorative feature comprises mina work or enamelling, metallic beads, minute detailing, gold work and compact weaving.
The classification of Banarasi sarees are pure silk called Katan, organza called Kora along with silk and zari, shattir, and georgette. These categories are divided according to their process of making and design. The design process includes tanchoi, jangla, tissue, cutwork, vaskat, and butidar.
The time utilized to finish one saree takes around approximately 15 to 30 days depending on the complexity of the design and the relative work period.
The handloom industry for these Banarasi sarees has employed multiple artisans. Apart from Varanasi, other cities that handle the production of the same include Gorakhpur, Chanadauli, Bhadhi, Jaunpur etc in Uttar Pradesh. Moreover, the production has now become machinery based rather by handlooms, which is affecting the labourers’ work. This has also inevitably resulted in the deterioration of the overall look of Banarsi sarees compared to what it was before.