Kanchipuram town is famous for temples and hand woven silk sarees and even called silk city. Nearly 5000 families who live in this town is engaged in this silk business. It is said that Kanjeevaram saree can be preserved for more than 100 years, and it becomes a heirloom piece.
Every south indian girl will have a kanjeevaram saree in her trousseau. These sarees are lovingly worn by people of all ages, and I am no exception.
Silk is the processed product of secretion of silk worm. The method is called as sericulture, and the entire process is manual. Do you know that 15 silk worms are being killed to get 1 gram of silk, 1500 silk worms are being killed to get one meter of woven silk cloth.
This is like indirect killing of worms. If you are against this, you can easily opt for ahimsa silks or peace silk, where silk is extracted after the worm has completed metamorphosis and emerged from cocoon. This type of silk is called nonviolent and eco friendly, and many celebrities wear these type of silks, but it is about 1-1/2 costlier than other silk but we should remember in the process we are saving more lives.
These sarees are available in a large price range depending on the quality of silk, design, and the amount of gold thread work in the saree. These zari are nothing but gold-dipped silver threads. The heavier the saree the costlier it is and also more pure. A double shade will cost you more than a single shade and length and width of the pallu and border also determines the cost. You get in variety of colors and designs and I can never say no to a kanjeevaram saree. I have started collecting sarees only at the time of my wedding, and here I present you my collection of kanjeevaram sarees. These type of saree will suit all people irrespective of whether they are thin, fat, dark, fair, etc. One will look elegant if you adorn a kanjeevaram saree, and I always feel nice when I wear these sarees. Each of my saree has not been worn more than twice, I plan to get a separate brocade blouse and rewear them in the future.
1. My very first saree bought with my own money, and it has a special place in my heart. Bought directly from the weavers in Bangalore. The pallu has dancing girl motif and people always complement me for its bright color.
2. Engagement sarees. First one gifted by in laws, and the second one I bought for the engagement, onion color which has meena work and stones.
3. Wedding sarees. First one is from my parents and second is the muhurtham saree and is the heaviest and the costliest, and I got 1000m stones placed on it.
4. Other sarees: First one is the more traditional one and 15 years old, second one is copper sulfate blue and one of my favourite bought for premarriage function, and the third one from dad for my thala Diwali.
4. Latest purchase. Light weight kanjeevaram saree bought for this Diwali, but I am wearing it for our 5th wedding anniversary, which is on Dec 11th. Love the color and the shade and the design of the blouse. There is no border for this one but the whole body has silkthread work and the photo is not doing justice to the double shade color.
Each saree has its own story like when and where it was purchased and for what reason, etc.
I actually like light colors, but I always end up buying dark colors as they look so good in the shop. Next on my agenda is to buy a really light color, lotus pink or pale pink. I am sure my collection will grow, and I want to perserve some for my daughter who is 2 years old now. I am eyeing my mom’s wedding saree next, which is a full brocade red saree and weighs a ton and cost rs. 1000 about 30 plus years back. I wish I could post the photo, but I do not have any.
If you are not from south india and if you do not have one, it is time you buy one for yourself and cherish it.
A famous textile house in Chennai has woven what it claims is the world’s costliest saree in Limca Book of Records, 40 lakhs and weighs 8 kg. Ravi Varma painting has been woven in pallu. The best part of the saree being that the women in the paintings are intricately hand-woven and beautified with jewels of gold, diamond, platinum, silver, ruby, emerald, yellow sapphire, sapphire, cat’s eye, topaz, pearl and corals.
Tips to preserve silk sarees.
- Always refold them every 3 months to avoid tear.
- Keep them in a dry and cold place covered in muslin cloth and always fold in such a way to avoid damage to the zari and let the zari be faced inwards to preserve sheen.
- As these sarees are worn only for 2 to 3 hrs at a time, there is no need to wash it after every use, just airing it inside the house will do.
- You can either dry clean or wash it at home using mild shampoo and we need to wash body, pallu, and border separately.
- Take care to avoid stains.