Sarees and Women – Part 1

They say adversity brings people together. That is so true. Never has it been more visible than in today’s times when so many people have come forward to help those who have been severely affected by the pandemic, largely those in the unorganised sector. This includes household help, casual workers, vendors, weavers to name just a few.

I love sarees as I feel they are an integral part of the Indian culture and we should do all we can to preserve this rich heritage. One of the ways to do it apart from wearing sarees is to extend our gratitude to the people, the weavers who bring this six-yard wonder to us. Weavers who weave magic into a piece of fabric putting in hours of focused work and all their imagination and creativity to create a dream, a garment, need all possible support. During these times, several women have come forward to help the weaver community by buying their magical creations.
This has not only helped the weavers but also contributed immensely towards the revival of this beautiful garment; a garment that has been a part of the Indian culture since time immemorial.

I feel we need to applaud and appreciate both.

In my endeavour to encourage women to wear this beautiful garment, I decided to feature some of those who absolutely love the garment. I have chosen women for whom saree wearing is a delight, a pleasure, and so comfortable.

I have started this series ‘Sarees and Women’ wherein I will be featuring six such women every time. These women will talk about why they wear sarees, why they love sarees and also talk about a handloom weave that they love.

Read on to know the reason for their love for the six-yard wonder!

Radhika Duggal

Radhika has been a working professional, a hotelier most of her life. As a result, sarees happened to her when she was barely twenty.

She recently launched Sattika, a brand promoting Indian handlooms in a big way. She is passionate about singing, dancing and cooking and has excellent PR skills.

Why she loves wearing a saree?

I believe the six-yard drape is the most sensuous of dressing for a woman, for every woman. It’s an attire which has been adorned by women in our culture for centuries, though in different forms. The flow of the pallu carrying with it the rustle of the wind, the steps through the pleats of the saree are simply magical. Saree for me is comfort wearing and my all-time favourite, anytime anywhere.

The Handloom weave she loves:

This is a tough one because every handcrafted saree from the looms of weavers across our country is a masterpiece. Each saree is so painstakingly crafted and speaks volumes about the time and effort that would have gone into creating it. However, I do have a soft corner for kanjeevaram sarees. These are vibrant, lustrous, striking combinations and have a very rich feel to them.

Ritu Varma

I am a happy go lucky kind of person, love being with family & friends. Though I always believed in living in the moment, the last year has reinforced it in me. I am at a stage where I don’t wish my identity to be defined by the kind of work I do, or the wife, mother or daughter I am. I am me-Ritu.

Why she loves wearing a saree?

I love wearing sarees though to be honest I don’t wear them as often I would like too. The very act of draping a saree makes you feel elegant and one size fits all.

The Handloom weave she loves:

Choosing my favorite amongst the treasures of Indian weaves & fabrics is a herculean task, but the simple pristine Kerala sari is one of my favorites. It’s a lovey combination of ivory & gold, so elegant and lovey to drape.

Ruchika Sharma

I am a mom to a 14-year-old and recently re-started my career after a sabbatical of 15 years – small steps at a time.

I love painting and playing tennis is my passion I recently found love for singing too.

Why she loves wearing a saree?

I love wearing sarees as I feel they complete a woman. A saree makes me feel beautiful and something about it gives me a kick. It looks graceful for all age groups.

The Handloom weave she loves:

I love chanderis and muls as they are easy to drape and easy to be in all day!

Dr. Swarn Sukh

Dr. Swarn Sukh is the soul of Ma Earth Botanicals, a Homeopath and a Naturopath with over three decades of healing experience and transforming lives. From being the only female architect amongst an office of men in her early career to being one the oldest students of her naturopathy class, her resilience knows no bounds.

Why she loves wearing saree?

I feel that a saree is the most graceful attire in the world! Needs no stitching and drapes a woman’s body really well.

The Handloom weave she loves:

I love Maheshwaris and Kanjivarams the most. I think the richness of these weaves along with the vibrant colours make them a true representation of the splendour that is India.

Basundhara Roye

I am a homemaker with myriad interests. I love reading and am an avid reader. Music, travelling and painting are my other hobbies and I am very passionate about them.

Why she loves wearing a saree?

My love for sarees started from the time I was a little girl growing up in a typical Bengali family. The women around me only wore sarees. I had no idea that ladies wore any other clothes other than the saree. My mother draped her saree in the modern way and my grandmother in the traditional Bengali way. This beautiful six yard fabric fascinated me like no other!

The Handloom weave she loves

I love wearing sarees and my favourite weave is the pure silk. I love the feel and texture of this fabric and I find that it drapes beautifully. I generally prefer plain silk sarees with attractive borders and pallas.

Seema Seal

I am an Entrepreneur running my own Fashion and Dance Choreography company, Fashionova SG, based in Singapore.

Why she loves wearing a saree?

I’m very fond of Sarees, because they make me look classy, elegant and sophisticated. Saree is a form of attire which can fit any body type easily, and it makes a woman look so beautiful.

The Handloom weave she loves:

I am very fond of Jamdanis and Chanderis. I love Jamdanis because of their lovely colour combinations and the sheer elegance. Chanderis fall very well and look beautiful.

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