How can we talk about sarees without discussing the queen of silk? This blog is designed to rekindle your love for the weave known as Kanjivaram and the saree it accompanies.
Wedding sarees made of Kanjivaram silk are a classy ethnic choice that sells like hotcakes during the wedding season. Any South Indian woman will inevitably admit that Kanjivaram pure silk sarees are a wealth of silk smoothness, meant to be displayed on exclusive occasions and treasured possessions. According to popular belief, the saree originated in the small Tamil Nadu town or village of Kanchipuram. A Kanjivaram silk saree is a showstopper due to its royal appeal, exceptional essence, and impeccable craftsmanship that has been mesmerizing onlookers for 400 years! Indian government gives these sarees GI status – Geographical Indications.
What is the difference between Kanchipuram and Kanjivaram sarees?
The Kanchipuram and Kanjeevaram sarees are the same – Two names with the same saree type. In Tamil Nadu, Kanchipuram is woven silk from the town of Kanchipuram. Kanchipuram sarees hold a special place for weddings and special occasions in the south.
A combination of its materials and durability makes it a world-famous product. Sarees are made from them because of their quality and durability, making them a very famous and valuable fabric.
Approximately 400 years ago, Kanchipuram was founded. No silk competes with it. Kanchipuram silks were translated by the British to Conjeevaram silks, also known as Kanjeevarum silks.
Since this silk is handwoven, most of the sarees made from it are handcrafted for an exclusive collection. Artwork from temples and sculptures is generally used as inspiration for designs.
The Origins and History
Kanjivaram sarees originated from Kanchipuram, a small town in Tamil Nadu. They have been worn for 400 years by weavers who migrated from Andhra Pradesh during the reign of Krishna Devaraya. Hindu mythology attributes the Kanchi silk weavers’ heritage to Sage Markanda. God created them to weave silk out of lotus tissue fibres. It was one of Lord Vishnu’s favourites.
A kanjivaram zari saree is a speciality, and the border and pallu are woven separately and then attached through intricate weaving to the body of the saree. This intricate weaving is so refined that no one can tell that two pieces of cloth are woven together! The zigzag pattern known as pitni can be seen along the pallu. Additionally, they are made in a way that makes them extremely durable – even after years of use, they won’t come apart or tear.
Process of weaving
Most saris are woven with the palu and the rest separately, and then they are joined together later. Zigzag patterns denote the intersecting parts of an object. Three shuttles are used to weave a silver wire with a shuttle. However, this also increases the weight of a silk saree to a level greater than 2 kilograms, making it heavier than most silk sarees on the market.
Why is Kanjivaram Silk Sarees special?
Pure silk sarees made in the style of Kanjivaram are adorned with zari silk threads dipped in liquid gold and silver. Kanjivaram sarees are classified according to the Geographical Indication (GI) structure that the silver and gold zari in them must amount to at least 57% and 0.6%, respectively.
There is even a temple tower design along the border of this seemingly royal venture and figures of animals and geometric patterns that are woven into the body in gold threads. This border has high contrast. The temple border, check, stripes, and floral (buttas) are traditional designs found on Kanjivaram sarees. Silk is also a highly regarded base material due to its quality and craftsmanship. Its high-quality fine count weaves, suitable enhancement, suitable linings, and smooth texture, along with the exceptional shimmer quality, have helped to keep its reputation as a value product to store and display on those special occasions, including weddings, parties, festivals, and social events.
Since 2005, the Kanjivaram saree pattern has been labelled as having a Geographical Indication, which protects and sustains a valuable product made with devotion and dedication.
Maintenance and styling
The bride wears a Kanjivaram saree in a variety of different ways, especially like a lehenga. The most common pairing of a kanjivaram half saree with a fancy blouse or jacket nowadays is wearing a coat. When it comes to styling a kanjivaram saree style, simplicity is vital. You can dress up any outfit with a gold statement necklace and fresh makeup. A separate saree bag is essential for storing and maintaining Kanjivaram saree drapings.
Is it worth going to Kanchipuram to buy sarees?
As one of India’s seven most sacred cities, Kanchipuram is also known as Sapta Puri and is located along the Vegavathy river. It is 75 km (2 hours drive) from Chennai and known for its silk sarees made in Kanjivaram. The Kanjivaram silk saree is synonymous with the bridal silk saree in South Indian weddings.
Known for its traditional colours like red, peacock blue, bottle green, mango mustard, and parrot green, kanjivaram silk sarees are heavier than regular sarees. This plain wedding dress features vibrant colours and a rich golden border. Sarees with more weight are of higher quality. Gold sari in Kanjivaram sarees is pretty expensive. (Bridal collections range from 10000 INR to several lakhs.)
Famous shops in Kanchipuram
Silk sarees are sold at several shops in Kanjivaram. The following shops specialize in Kanjivaram silk sarees:
- A S Babu Shah
- Sri Varshini Silk House
- NS Santhanam
- Prakash silk and sarees
- Rajamanikam stores
Chennai’s top shops
These are the shops known for kanjivaram silk sarees in Chennai:
- Pothys boutique
- Nalli Chinnasami Chetty
- Palam Silks
- RmKV Silks Private Limited
Shopping for bridal silk saris in Kancheepuram is better than other places
Sarees made of Kanjivaram silk are produced in the town of Kancheepuram. In other cities, meeting the weavers or the generation of weavers who own the shop does not guarantee authenticity.
A significant amount of savings is made when many silk sarees are purchased for wedding festivities in addition to wedding silk sarees. Kancheepuram and Chennai have a lower price point for silk sarees than other cities.
Kancheepuram is home to the most extensive collection of bridal silk sarees. Weavers are the most abundant in this area, followed by Chennai. The variety of silk sarees available in metros such as Bangalore is unbeatable.
Bought directly from weaver
Weavers provide numerous and incomparable benefits to buyers directly.
It must be an enjoyable experience to shop for bridal sarees. It is a nightmare to travel in metros due to the traffic.
What is the difference between Kanchipuram and Kanjivaram sarees? India has recognized a kanjivaram heavy saree as a geographical designation since 2005-06. Indications of geographical origin are signs attached to products that possess properties or a reputation due to their geographical origin. Traditionally, these sarees have been passed down from generation to generation as an heirloom of Indian culture. History and culture are infused into these sarees, which will help your ethnic look shine.