Wear an exquisite kanchipuram saree to your next festive function
A Kanchipuram saree is a name which will incite sighs of envy and delight from any saree loving woman, and will also immediately conjure up images of the iconic Bollywood actress Rekha, whose frequent patronage of it has made her the unofficial brand ambassador of the garment. Also known as a kanjivaram saree, it is a traditional ethnic garment, which is hand woven by weavers from the Kanchipuram province in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. For those who are unfamiliar with the history of the garment, the Kanchipuram saree is said to be, at least according to Hindu mythology, the favorite fabric of Lord Shiva, and the silk weavers of Kanchipuram are said to be direct descendants of the Sage Markananda, the “master weaver of Gods”. There is no such thing as a plain Kanchipuram saree, since consists of six yards of gold cloth and heavy silk with bright motifs and generous, wide borders.
The Kanchipuram saree has its origins in South India, but its popularity has transcended all geographical boundaries. Any woman who enjoys wearing high quality ethnic outfits will tell you that the prospect of owning a hand-weaved Kanchipuram with its decadent gold borders and ostentatious decorative motifs is exciting. Prices are not budget-friendly, given the high level of craftsmanship which has gone into creating each individual piece, however, a kanchipuram is not merely a “saree”, it is an heirloom which will be passed down from one generation to another in the same manner as jewellery. Saree aficionados take their Kanchipuram selection very seriously and are quick to head to the many shops that are dotted around various parts of South India in order to increase their collections. From bargaining over prices to carefully examining each strand of zari to ensuring that the delicately handcrafted motifs on the pallu are authentic, the process of acquiring and understanding the craze around Kanchipuram sarees could take a while. However considering the indelible impression made by this garment in regard to Indian fashion and culture, it is only natural that this saree and the wearing of it be considered nothing less than an art rather than a mere fashion statement.
As with most other fashion styles that have been appreciated by the entertainment industry, Bollywood has, as usual, taken to this decadent and glamorous saree like a fish takes to water. From Rekha to Dimple Kapadia and Hema Malini who flaunt their heavily embellished kanchipurams with pride, to the younger generation such as Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif, and Vidya Balan, who ensure that the tradition is kept alive and in vogue, it will not be long before one sees Hollywood and the international fashion circuit flaunting their unique renditions of this iconic ethnic garment. Kanchipuram sarees are an investment for any Indian bride who wants to keep the flame of tradition alive and will not only wear a beautiful Kanchipuram for her own wedding, but will carefully preserve it within multiple layers of tissue in order to hand it over with love to her own child.