Kanchipuram/Kancheevaram is a town in South India, also known as the “Silk City” and is very famous for the ancient temples. The main profession of the poeple in Kanchipuram is weaving silk. The town is very proud of the skilled weavers that has made these sarees one of the best in the world.
The Kanchipuram Silk Saree is hand- woven with dyed silk yarn and interleaved designs made with Zari which is a silk thread twisted with a thin silver wire and then glided with pure gold.
They are woven from pure mulberry silk and hence have a great reputation for the texture, lustre, durability and finish. We have seen so many celebrities like Rekha, Vidya Bala, Sridevi flaunting their Kanchipuram Silk Sarees at all award functions. They definitely give that rich look.
The traditional ones come in designs that consist of sun, moon, peacock, mangoes ( very famous), flowers, leaves, chariots, elephants etc. These sarees are available in every imaginable design, variety and colours and thus makes the job of selection quite challenging for us. These are no doubt, the best sarees available anywhere in the world
The cost of the Kanchipuram silk saree depends on the quality. There are different kinds of kanchipuram silk sarees like the Pure Zari, tested zari, light weight silk sarees etc. The pure zari ones are the most expensive and start from Rs.15000 (very simple design) to Rs.200,000. Some people even place orders for more heavy work which can even cost you Rs. 500,000. They are durable and when maintained properly, can last more than 50 years.
The tested zari silk saree is woven using not pure silk but partially mixed silk. They come in various designs and look very beautiful. Generally prefer buying these tested zari silk sarees for small occasions as they are not as expensive as the pure zari ones, yet nobody can actually find the difference in quality unless you really are a silk expert. They are available from Rs.2500 to Rs.15000.
College going girls prefer the light weight silk sarees which are really light weight, yet give that traditional look. The cost depends on whether it is made of pure zari or tested zari.
Maintaining Kanchipuram Silk Sarees:
Do not keep the sarees in a box or polythene bag.Wrap them in muslin cloth or saree bags made of cloth.
Unfold the silk sarees and change the folding every three months as the silk can loosen near the foldings.
Do stitch a saree fall for these sarees to prevent the thread from the border of the saree being damaged.
Dry cleaning is always adviced for these sarees. However, one should also wash them using hands once in 6 months. Wash the border, pallu and body of the saree separately. Iron in medium heat only.
If the above instructions are followed, these can last a really long time. I still have my grandmother’s sarees that are more than 50 years old.
And this is me in one of my favourite Kanchipuram Silk Sarees. It is made of Pure Zari and cost me Rs.20,000.
I hope you loved reading this first article in the new segment. I would tell you Where to shop for Kanchipuram Silk sarees in the next post. Stay tuned.