There are many different types of saris throughout India and over a hundred ways to drape them! Certain types of saris are very distinct to the region where they’re from. Others are more popular. Here are all the different types of saris, in case you’re wondering, and where they originated from:
Chikan: traditional embroidery from Lucknow. Introduced by Nur Jehan, wife of mughal emperor Jahangir.
Banarsi: one of the finest saris in India; made of finely woven silk. Types of Banarsi saris include: tant, jamdani, tanchoi, and shalu. Jamdani is a fabric of fine cotton muslin of Bengali origin with colored stripes and patterns.
Baluchari: from West Bengal; characterized by mythological scenes handwoven on the saris.
Kantha: a type of embroidery; also from West Bengal.
Ikat: type of weaving similar to tye-dye; can be in silk or cotton; originates from Western Orissa.
Cuttaki Pata: silk and cotton; from Orissa.
Sambalpuri Pata: also in silk and cotton and from Western Orissa.
Bomkai: silk and cotton; Western Orissa.
Mayurbhanj Tussar Silk: from Orissa.
Sonepuri/Subarnapuri Silk: Western Orissa.
Bapta and Khandua: silk and cotton saris from Western Orissa.
Berhampuri Silk: Orissa.
Tanta/Taant: cotton sari from Orissa, West Bengal, and Bangladesh.
Jamdani: sari of fine, cotton muslin from Bangladesh.
Jamdani Khulna: Bangladeshi sari.
Dhakai Benarosi: Bangladeshi cotton sari that is made in Dhaka.
Rajshahi Silk: delicate and soft silk saris made in Rajshahi, Bangladesh.
Tangail Tanter: Bangladesh sari from the Tangail district.
Katan: also a Bangladeshi sari.
Paithani: sari named after the Paithan region of Maharashtra. These saris are woven by hand from fine silk and are considered the richest saris of Maharashtra. They are characterized by oblique square design borders and a peacock design pallu.
Bandhani: type of tye dye common in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Jamnagar in Gujarat is very famous for its bandhani work.
Kota Doria: pure cotton saris from Kota, Rajasthan.
Lugade: Maratha sari of nine yards.
Chanderi: Chanderi is a town in Madhya Pradesh. Chanderi saris are handwoven.
Maheshwari: Maheshwaris are a business community originally from Rajasthan. These saris are from Madhya Pradesh as well.
Pochampally: Pochampally is a village in Andhra Pradesh.
Venkatagiri: also in Andhra Pradesh.
Gadwal: city in Andhra Pradesh.
Guntur: Andhra Pradesh.
Narayanpet: town in Andhra Pradesh that specializes in handloom saris.
Mangalagiri: also a town in Andhra Pradesh.
Balarampuram: small village in Kerala famous for its saris.
Coimbatore: city in Tamil Nadu.
Kanchipuram: locally called kanjivaram; also from Tamil Nadu. Famous silk sari.
Chettinad: cotton sari from Tamil Nadu with spontaneous use of color and patterns and stripes with contrasting hues. The thickness of this sari and changing demands have kept it out of production for nearly a hundred years!
Mysore Silk: from Karnataka.
Ilkal: traditional sari with kasuti embroidery from Karnataka.
Valkalam: silk sari from southern India.
Although not all these types of saris are worn anymore, at least not commonly, it is important to keep in mind that many old styles are coming back so instead of sticking to your usual Benarsi silk try some of the other types of silks or for a more festive touch there’s always Bandhani.
[photo credits: homeindia.com, cbazaar.com, exoticindiaart.com, sarishop.com, bracnet.net]
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