The Magnificence of a Dharmavaram

 

 

When we talk about silk saree the only thing that comes to our mind is “Banarsaiya, hai Banarasiya”, but do you know south India has its own beautiful handcrafted soft mulberry silk sarees known as “Dharmavaram”. It's a must-have drape available in each lady’s wardrobe across the southern coast. Woven with love and cherishing its ancient handloom practices.

The weaving process is a livelihood for most of the families in the ancient town of Dharamavaram, in the Anantpur district of Andhra Pradesh.

This ancient town was founded after Dharmamba, the mother of the town's founder, Kriya Shakthi Vodavaru Swamy. Due to the abundance of mulberry trees in the area, which provide a natural breeding site for wild silkworms, the town naturally took to silk weaving. The sheer brilliance and elegance of the weave earned the mulberry silk Dharmavaram sarees nationwide acclaim by the 19th century. Weavers evolved over time to include all colours, themes, designs, and embellishments to keep up with changing times and expand their client base, starting with bridal sarees in shades of red and yellow. To help the craftspeople fulfil the needs of a global market, the procedure has been partially mechanized today.

What’s so great about the particular saree? The beautiful Dharmavaram silk is woven in two colours, creating a subtle double-tone impression that is enhanced by the solid-colour border and pallu. The twisted look created by the double colouration is distinctive to these sarees. Intricate temple designs and a range of ethnic Indian themes, such as the elephant, peacock, and lotus, are among the brocade patterns and motifs. Weavers have tried Assam silk, tussar, cotton, and cotton silk in addition to South silk.

Dharmavaram silk is mostly used for bridal sarees in the south. As a result, Dharmavaram silks were first predominantly created in yellow and maroon colour combinations, which are both auspicious colours in Hindu tradition. With more individuals becoming interested in the saree, weavers have begun to add a variety of various colours to the saree, and Dharmavaram sarees are now virtually available in all colours. The saree's striking double tone distinguishes it from all other south silks.

Decorative stones, chamki, sequins, and kundan are used to ornament modern Dharmavaram sarees. This appeals to the younger generation, making it ideal for weddings, events, and pujas.

 Dharmavaram sarees are one of the most popular religious and ceremonial sarees. As a result, the majority of the motifs are geared toward such feelings. The most popular designs feature peacock feathers and peacock patterns. The Brahmakamals, star designs, and elephant designs follow. Temple architecture has provided much inspiration, and such motifs are frequently shown on saree pallus. These sarees include a gold-plated border with self-printed graphics. Motifs are also reliant on the weavers' ingenuity and discretion.

 

Handloom and power loom sarees are two different types of Dharmavaram sarees. The sarees come in 26 different designs, 11 of which are handloom and 15 of which are power-loomed. Kalanjali, Evening, Morning, and Brocade sarees come in a total of 240 jacquards. For its exclusive royal colour combinations and texture, wedding Dharmavaram sarees are also known as Rajwadi sarees.

Professional dry-cleaning is strongly advised because most Dharmavaram sarees are constructed of hefty silk. To maintain lifespan and durability, these sarees should be carefully preserved and stored away from a wet environment.

 

  About the Author

    Aneesha Menon is a Content Marketer. She creates content that weaves together a brand's narrative, giving them a voice of purpose. If not behind a screen, you can find her trying to perfect the art of baking or exploring the local breweries.