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SAREES OF EASTERN INDIA

INTRODUCTION

The eastern region covers the lower reaches of the Ganga plain and delta and consists of the Indian states of West Bengal, Bihar and Eastern Uttar Pradesh. The Eastern Deccan region consists of Orissa, Eastern Madhya Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh. The different categories of saree from Bihar, West Bengal and Orissa are discussed in this presentation.

SAREES OF BIHAR

TUSSAR SAREE Silk weavers could be found in : Districts of Bhaglpur and Patna Further south India in Behragoda (Singhbhum dist) Towards the east in Bhagaiyya (Santhal Paganas dist) Westwards in Aurangabad.

SAREES OF BIHAR
Fabrics, saris and dhotis made of Tussar were considered to be pure and auspicious. The traditional Tussar sari was primarily of two types: a) The plain Tussar sari b) The Tussar sari with extra weft ornamentation in the end piece and extra warp patterning in the border The kora or plain unbleached Tussar by Tussar sari with red border or lal paad of up to one handspun was largely woven for ceremonial occasions, especially Hindu rituals.

SAREES OF BIHAR

Manpur and Chakand (Gaya dist) too, plain Tussar sari was being woven especially for the Chhtpuja after diwali A reverse of the Pote sari with a red body and a gold Tussar border called Sundri, was also woven.

VARIOUS TUSSAR SILK SARIS:

MATARIA SALAMKHANIA KIRKIRI TABIJA MORKANTHI NAURANJI GANDHAKI SURAJMUKHI FARMAISHI

TUSSAR WITH EXTRA WEFT AND EXTRA WARP PATTERNING

In some areas a greater play with the reed, pick, denting and the introduction of extra weft and extra warp With two ends in yellow alternating with two in red, its close variation, the Laldehi had two ends in pink instead of yellow in the body. . The border and end piece patterns were subtle yet effective such as the Chataiyya or the Bulbul chashm pattern.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


DACCAI JAMDANI Daccai Jamdani is distinguished from its mutant cousins by its very fine texture resembling muslin and the elaborate and ornate workmanship. The Daccai saree consists of different colored threads intricately woven, (with several needles used) on white unbleached cotton. The thread was a slightly greater count than the base fabric. The original version is referred to as Daccai Jamdani, although it is now produced in Navdeep and Dhattigram, in West Bengal

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


JAMDANI Jamdani is an ancient fine muslin cloth with geometric or floral designs. Towards the end of the Mughal Empire, a special type of jamdani cloth used to be made for the Nepalese regional dress 'ranga'. Jamdani came from the Persian words 'jama', which means cloth and 'dana', which means buti or diapering.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


MANUFACTURING TECHNIQUE For making yarns weavers needed taku, a bamboo basket, a shell and a stone cup. They used popcorn, rice or barley for starch. Before making jamdani designs they used to dye their yarn and starch it. For dye they used flowers and leaves of creepers. For quality jamdani they used yarn of 200 to 250 counts. For making jamdani two weavers sit side by side at a loom to work on the delicate designs. Jamdani designs are made while the fabric is still on the loom. Coarse yarns are used for designs to make the motifs rise above the fabric.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


VARIETIES OF JAMDANI WORK

The main peculiarity of jamdani work is the geometric design. Present day jamdani saris have on their ground designs of rose, jasmine, lotus, bunch of bananas, bunch of ginger and sago. A jamdani with small flowers diapered on the fabric is known as butidar. If these flowers are arranged in reclined position it is called tersa jamdani.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


If designs with peacocks and leaves of creepers cover the entire field of the sari it is called jalar naksha. If the field is covered with rows of flowers it is known as fulwar jamdani. Duria jamdani has designs of spots all over. Belwari jamdani with colorful golden borders used to be made during the Mughal period, especially for the women of the inner court.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


DECLINE OF JAMDANI CRAFT

Increased demands for jamdani weavers caused a rise in their wage and subsequently, the prices of jamdani too At present, a major problem of the industry is that the weavers do not get adequate wages for their labor. The producers fail to recover the costs. Many organizations now patronize jamdani industry and this is helping the production of superior quality jamdani.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


DAKKA MUSLIN
The golden age of Dhaka muslin began with Mughal rule. Dhaka Muslin became famous and attracted foreign and transmarine buyers after the establishment of the Mughal capital at Dhaka. A huge quantity of the finest sort of Muslin was procured for the use of the Mughal emperors The finest sort of Muslin was made of phuti cotton, which was grown in certain localities on the banks of the Brahmaputra and its branches

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


Muslins were designated by names denoting either fineness or transparency of texture, or the place of manufacture or the uses to which they were applied as articles of dress The finest sort of Muslin was called Malmal Places that became famous for manufacturing superior quality of Muslins. These places were Dhaka, Sonargaon, Dhamrai, Teetbady, Junglebary and Bajitpur. . The costly Dhaka cotton goods, particularly the Muslin, lost in competition with the cheap industrial products of England.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


TUSSAR OF BENGAL
Tussar weaving in Bengal has traditionally been the preserve of the tanti caste. Tussar was traditionally woven on throw-shuttle pit looms. Patterning was largely achieved with sets of jhaanp heald alone and the ground fabric was usually a plain weave. The quality of Tussar is judged by the weight of silk in its weft and warp.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


TANGAIL SAREE
Tangail saree got its name from the place of its origin, Tangail, where it was traditionally woven. Tangail was probably an extra warp bordered, medium count range. The Tangail is said to be the most successful hybrid of the Jamdani and Shantipuri sarees. Tangails are woven even in silk wrap and cotton weft, and even in pure silk. The boarder is either plain or is accompanied with extra weft patterning in the ground and the end piece with the help of a hooked needle called the chheench after every two picks, imitating the Jamdani technique.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


The unbleached ground has given way to bright pink, blue, green, orange, and yellow with motifs worked in equally brilliant contrasting colors. The width of the boarder now varies from one to ten inches with or without extra-warp patterning. The motifs woven on Tangail are the aansh paar pattern, podda or lotus, nimkeen or biscuit, and pradeep or lamp pattern apart from the lata-pata or vine-pattern

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


BALUCHARI SAREE
Baluchar saree is famous for its shear weight and the richness of its untwisted silk. The specialty of the Baluchar saris is the large Pallu with a central pattern of flowing Kalgas, the mango design enclosed by repetitive frames of miniatures. The most popular colours used are red, blue, yellow, green and scarlet. The Baluchari sarees have large floral motifs interspersed with flowering shrubs.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


Traditionally the Muslim community was also known to produce these Baluchars with figured patterns depicting court scenes, horse with a rider, women smoking hookah. The Kalka design or the cone motif is often surrounded with floral borders. The most distinctive feature of Baluchari is the use of human brocade figures to adorn the borders and pallu. The motifs were entirely in silver zari and the fabric was a gorgeous affair.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


When Dubraj, the last of the master weavers of Baluchari died at the beginning of this century without imparting his skills to anyone, the glorious tradition ended with him. Subsequently, several schemes have been launched to revive the ancient Baluchari tradition. The intricately carved terracotta temples of Bishnupur provide ample inspiration for the weavers who reproduce whole epics on the pallu of the sari. The ground colors range from sober beige, to resplendent blues and reds with contrast borders, all on fine mulberry silk.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


SHANTIPURI SAREE
The traditional Shantipuri saree catered largely to the upper-middle-class Bengali ladies. The Shantipuri sarees were woven on throw-shuttle pitloom. A needle called chiyu is used to lift the pattern. Once the Shantipuri came to be woven on a fly-shuttle pitlooms, the pattern for the border were lifted in the extra warp with the help of a lease rod referred to as dangi, supporting the healds or baw which looped around the ends that had to be suppressed or lifted.

SAREES OF WEST BENGAL


The commonly woven patterns in the borders include the following: Bhomra paar beehive pattern Aansh paar fish scale pattern Chatai paar mat pattern Taaj paar Crown pattern Rajmahal paar Palace pattern Kamininoth paar Nose ring pattern Chandmala paar Strings of moon Prajapati paar Butterfly pattern Terchhi paar Diagonal pattern Benkai Terchi paar Double diagonal/wave pattern The Shantipuri saree woven today uses cotton yarn from 60s to 100s counts, combined with art silk and rolex plastic zari.

DIFFERENT STYLES OF SAREE DRAPING

THE ODISSI SAREE

Orrisa is a beautiful state, well irrigated by rivers its landscape rising up from the temple towns of the coast through the eastern ghats with their thick forests, to the deccan plateau. The women of Orrisa dress in saris of Blue, Red and Magenta and deep colors. Influence on textile art is seen through the presence of motifs such as the temple borders, lotus, conches and wheels, that signify the affinity with the reigning deity or goddess.

THE MATERIAL
COTTON . Odissi cottons are thick with a high thread count as well as thicker yarn and are available in varying degrees of fineness. Cottons are usually starched stiff for maximum effect prior to draping. Odissi sarees are available in the 5 yard format as well as the dupatta format which is 2.25 metre. SILK Tussar silk originated from Orissa and is one of the lighter, more delicate and stiffer silks available.

TYPES OF SAREES IN ORRISA


The state of Orissa makes 4 distinct types of sarees. 1. THE BOMKAI SAREE: The bomkai saree is a recent adaptation from tribal sarees and is named after a tribal village in southern Orissa. It has an embroidery-like work on the border and pallo (the broad band at the end).the work is very intricate.

2.SAMBALPURI SAREES: Sambhalpuri sarees, with their richly woven borders and pallus are among the most popular Odissi sarees.

The below are examples of the Bandha or tie-and-dye or double ikat from Sambhalpur and is one of the several variations of Sambhalpuris.

The two sarees below have a coarser cotton and also have more ethnic elements e.g. multiple borders and the elements within the borders.

These saris are the example of the Pasapalli. Pasa is the word for the chequer board and it is a very popular game almost exactly like ludo. Pasa palli is therefore the saree full of chequers .This element is usually found all over the saree and is not restricted to one area of the piece. The first is a saree, while the second is a dupatta,

3.BEHRAMPURI SILK SAREES: The third type is the Behrampuri silk, which are usually heavy, with narrow borders, that are slightly plain, without the intricate designs generally found on the Sambhalpuri sarees. The last is the Khandua pata, which is cheaper than the Sambhalpuri because the yarn used is less expensive.

THE COLOURS
It must be noted that the color and design palette for mens dressing is conservative while women dress in any and every possible color, design and pattern. The only exceptions are white, black and red. White signifies death and is necessarily worn in mourning. Red is auspicious and is necessarily worn by the bride. Black is inauspicious and is not a good colour to wear at weddings or festive celebrations. These colors lead to strong associations and are part of a bundle of nonverbal communication but these may be worn on other occasions without any meaning. An Odissi saree cannot hope to blend quietly into the background! Most handloom Odissi sarees contains bright and strong colours. Vegetable dyes have been replaced by chemical dyes, though the former is still available, but the prices are significantly higher

THE DHOOP-CHAON EFFECT:


In silks, a stunning impact is created when the colours of the weft and warp are different. The shadowlight effect is amazing and is not easy to capture on a camera. Movement or difference in field of depth shows this effect off perfectly.

THE PALLO
This is the loose end of the sari that flows freely and is usually its most attractive part. The pallaa or paalav or pallo may have contrasting colors or designs and stands out from the rest of the sari. This part may be up to a meters long. It is also the portion used as a partial veil in a temple or as a mark of respect among elders in traditionally conservative societies in the northern belts. The pallo of the Odissi saree is always arranged in horizontal lines with motifs filling up the space in between. Lines alternating with a variety of motifs seems to be the signature of the classic Odissi textile.

THE BORDER
This is a special element of all sarees. It takes on representations from the culture of the place that creates it. The sarees from Orissa have a border which shows the silhouettes of these temples seen as simple mountain peaks. Sea shells or wheels are another major characteristic of borders in Oriya sarees.

THE MOTIFS
THE LOTUS THE RUDRAKSHA. THE MATSYA OR FISH THE TORTOISE THE COILED SERPENT THE PEACOCK. THE BICHITRAPURI ANCHAL THE ELEPHANT THE DHARMA-CHAKRA

THE BUTTIS
These are small little elements that may be present all over the saree in some form of symmetry. They may populate the saree sparsely or densely and the more work there is on the saree, the heavier it gets not only in real weight terms but in price perceptions as well. These are minor elements and cannot on their own create magic. They can only support the overall design through a splattering of colour or consonant design elements. These two pictures show details of the buttis which are present all over the saree. In sarees from other states, this element plays a major role, but in Oriya sarees, they are generally very sparse and small.

THE EMBROIDERY
The actual embroidery work may be done using zari which is golden thread (not gold just golden) or silk thread. The presence of golden thread or zari work makes a sari very heavy figuratively and the use of such heavy sarees is warranted only at weddings of families and close friends. On all the silk examples above, the threadwork is resham or silk thread.