Sarees are one of the oldest attire that has succeeded in stealing millions of hearts even today. This piece of clothing has undergone a lot of improvisation in different scenarios and today’s saree is thus much more refined and suited for the women of this generation.
Saree traces back its origin to the Vedic era, and the evidence also shows that the priests first wore it in temples of women deities. Saree got its name originally from the word ‘sati’ that means the piece of clothing and the Pallu is a word that got its name from the Pallava kingdom.
Sarees were first worn without the blouses or top covering. They were tied like dhoti, by covering the entire body. This was then followed by tying of the saree in different styles according to the region and their culture. The one thing that remained constant in the evolution of the sarees for 5000 years is the pleats. Women made sure that they had the perfect pleats in their sarees from the very start. The beauty of a saree rests in these fan-shaped pleats both in the bottom and top of the saree.
The beauty of a saree lies in the way it gracefully enhances the curves of the Indian women. No other attire can suit the Indian body types as a saree does. It elegantly flaunts the parts that make a woman look beautiful and covers the parts that have to be covered.
There are various styles of draping a saree in different regions of our country. The draping style varies from community to community according to their taste and comfort. The Maharashtrian and South Indian style of draping are very comfortable and utilitarian while the Bengali style of draping the saree is elaborate. The length of the saree varies from 4 to 9 yards, and this allows it to be draped in a countless number of ways.
Various materials are now used to create these yards of elegance, but initially, there were not so many choices for women. Initial sarees were made of cotton and silk. Silk was considered to be an auspicious material, and it was specially reserved for weddings and other occasions while cotton was used on a regular basis. Designs in these sarees were bare minimal, and hand embroidery and prints were only predominantly used for designing. As time passes, new materials were used to make these sarees and today after centuries there are infinite varieties of material, color, and design for women to choose from. Classy and modern materials such as georgette, net, velvet, chiffon and crepe are used to make sarees nowadays.
Sarees are the only attire that has survived the fashion industry for so many years, and still, women crave for them. As sarees play a huge part in our culture and tradition, it is important for us to carry forward the love for sarees to the generations to come.