Who doesn’t love the ethnicity of the royal Kanjivaram sarees! Also known as Kanchipuram sarees, these silk sarees are a weakness for most ladies, including me. I keep getting many queries from women on ways to identify a genuine Kanjivaram before investing in them. So, I decided to share an ultimate guide on recognizing a virgin Kanjivaram saree and distinguishing it from other fake silk sarees with you.
Below you will find everything you need to know for verifying the authenticity of a Kanjivaram silk saree. Stay tuned!
So, how can you tell a real kanjivaram saree? Inspecting the contrasting palette between the pallu and saree body is the simplest way to identify an original Kanjivaram saree. To get even surer, pass the silk saree through a wedding ring. An original Kanjivaram saree will go through the ring orifice without any difficulty, but a fake one wouldn’t.
Finally, take some loosely hanging silk threads from the saree edge, and burn them. It is an actual Kanjivaram saree only if it gives off a typical burnt hair smell and some ashes.
Essential Factors to Identify Authentic Kanchipuram Silk Saree
Nestled in Tamil Nadu, India, the ancient town of Kanchipuram is known for its glamorous Kanjivaram silk sarees. These handwoven sarees are available in a variety of color combinations in the market. Typically, temple motifs, stripes, and Butas are the most common patterns on these sarees. However, the modern Kanjivaram designs include animal, fruit, and geometric motifs as well.
Above all, bluffing the customers with fake Kanjivaram pieces is getting mainstream these days. Don’t fall into a trap, and use these ways to identify authentic Kanjivaram sarees for yourself.
- Check the Color Palette
Original Kanjivaram sarees are known for their striking color combinations. The quickest way to identify an original Kanjivaram saree is by noticing the contrasting colors between the saree body and its pallu portion. If the shades are somewhat similar, then the saree is likely to be a fake one.
- Touch to Reveal
Silk sarees are smooth to touch and feel feathery throughout the fabric. Practice a habit of moving your hands over the entire saree and feeling its softness before purchasing a Kanjivaram piece. You can tell a saree to be fake if there are some rough patches anywhere on the outfit’s body.
- Lustre Test
Yet another silk saree feature is their lustrous appearance. Silk sarees shine when placed at some angles under the light. You are likely to come across a fake saree if it gives off a fade appeal. Original Kanjivaram pieces will always have a uniform lustrous and soft texture.
- Ring Test
The ring test is the easiest yet fail-proof test to identify an original Kanjivaram silk saree. Take a wedding ring, and try to pass the entire silk saree through its orifice. A saree that passes through the ring easily is a real one, undoubtedly.
How to Identify and Buy Pure Kanchipuram Silk Saree?
When you are at a silk saree store, you need actionable ways to identify original Kanjivaram sarees. Ladies ask me about unique ways to test the genuineness of a Kanchipuram silk saree in the market. So, here are some fool-proof tips to check for a pure Kanjivaram silk saree at the showroom.
- Silk Hallmark
The Silk Mark Organization of India, a body of the Central Silk Board of India, certifies all the pure silk sarees with an authentic silk hallmark. Before buying a Kanjivaram silk saree, check for the silk hallmark for measuring its authenticity.
- Zari Scratch Test
Red silk threads are twisted with silver threads and dipped in gold to make the golden Zaris used in the authentic Kanjivaram silk sarees. On scratching the Zari work, genuine Kanjivaram sarees give off a reddish appearance. In contrast, a fake silk saree will produce white threads on pricking the intricate gold threadwork.
- Rubbing the Saree
While at the shop, take a part of the silk saree fabric, and rub it gently on your palms. The actual Kanjivaram sarees feel slightly warmer when massaged using your hands. If there are no temperature variations, then the saree might be an ingenuine silk saree.
- Snow-Walk Test
I’m sure you are familiar with the peculiar sound made by walking on a snowy surface. When you try to wear a new and original Kanjivaram silk saree, the garment makes the exact snow-walking sound. Contrastingly, an ingenuine silk saree will not make any such scratching sound while draping.
- Weaving Patterns
The handcrafted Kanchipuram sarees entail warp and weft textile weaving patterns. Whenever you step out to buy a Kanjivaram saree, turn it over to the wrong side and analyze the handweaving designs.
- Rough Raw Edges
You already know that pure mulberry silk is soft to touch uniformly. When purchasing a Kanjivaram silk saree, you should move your hands over the raw edges to feel any roughness. A real Kanjivaram will not have any rough edges, while a fake one might feel uneven and rigid on the outlines.
- Three-Ply Silk
The original Kanjivaram silk sarees will have three-ply silk in the fabric. Inspect the saree thoroughly initially. If you come across two-ply silk, then you can safely conclude that the saree is an artificial one.
- Uneven is Original
The manually woven Kanjivaram silk sarees might possess some unevenness in the weaving pattern and Karigari. So, while inspecting a silk saree, coming across slight imperfections is a sign of originality.
- Blurred Joints
Do you know that handicrafters weave the Kanjivaram silk pallus separately and join them with the rest of the saree at a later stage? Due to such a process, you will encounter a zigzag-blurred joint between the pallu and the body of an original Kanjivaram silk saree.
- Heavy is Real
Original Kanchipuram silk sarees are heavier and costlier than other sarees, including fake ones. Weighing a Kanjivaram piece before buying is a sure-shot way to verify its truth value.
- Consider the Price
Since artisans weave the Kanjivaram silk sarees using hands, the original outfits are expensive, with an approximated price range between $96-$2755. Don’t get excited about encountering an inexpensive deal of buying Kanjivaram sarees at a price lesser than the given estimation. It’s more likely to be a fake Kanjivaram silk saree.
Is Your Kanjivaram Saree A Fake?
By now, you already own a Kanjivaram silk saree in your closet. Are you worrying about if the shopkeeper has cheated you or not? Well, you can justify the saree’s authenticity by carrying out the following tests and inspections right now.
- No Color Fading
Kanjivaram silk sarees have hardened colors that don’t fade away on their own. So, if, even after storing the saree in your wardrobe for a prolonged duration, the color remains intact, then the saree is an authentic Kanjivaram piece.
- Old is Intoxicating
Much like beverages, Kanjivaram silk sarees enhance their sheen as time passes. If your silk saree keeps getting better and better with time, then it is an authentic Kanjivaram saree without any second thoughts.
- Burn Test
Silk threads are natural fibers and give off a pungent burnt-hair smell when subjected to a flame. Cut out some loose silk threads from the saree, bundle them up, and burn them carefully. Right when the smoke comes out, smell it, and check for any burnt leather odor. If you find the expected sulfur-like smell along with some ashes, then it is certainly an original silk-made saree.
- Chemical Test
For conducting a successful chemical test on your Kanchipuram silk saree, you would require the following supplies at hand.
- Caustic Soda – 1 Tablespoon
- Clean Water – 150 cc
- Glycerine – 8 grams
- Copper Sulphate – 16 grams
Mix all of these chemicals, and prepare a homogenous solution. Now, cut off a small section of fabric from your Kanjivaram silk saree, and immerse it into the prepared solution. An original Kanjivaram saree will dissolve in the solution, while the artificial silk sarees wouldn’t.
- National Testing Center
After conducting all the above tests, if you are still unsure about your Kanjivaram saree, you can resort to the nearest National Testing Center. The authority will carry their tests and verifications to deduce the truthfulness of your silk garment.
How to Identify A Silk Mark?
Silk hallmarks are the best ways to separate original and imitated Kanjivaram silk sarees. Unfortunately, fraudsters are even replicating the silk mark nowadays. To identify an original hallmark, look for the following features in the saree symbols.
- Silk marks are associated with the sarees by sewing the labels or attaching hang tags. An imitation saree might have a silk mark stamped onto the fabric.
- You can inspect the holograms on the authentic silk hallmarks. Fake silk marks don’t have any such trademark holograms.
- Every original silk mark has a unique number imprinted on it. You can use these numbers to track the authentic silk mark user for enhanced verification.
Where to Find Silk Marked Kanjivaram Online at Best Prices?
Online marketplaces like Amazon and Flipkart have a vast range of premium silk sarees. Their products are priced at different points and boast various designs and colors. Besides the giant online destinations, you can also shop high-quality hallmarked Kanjivaram sarees from similar marketplaces like Myntra and Craftsvilla.
Silk sarees are worth the price only if they are genuine and authentic. With frauds getting prevalent in the market, prevent yourself from cheating by adhering to the above ways of identifying an actual Kanjivaram saree. Stay aware, and get the best saree for yourself from the showroom.