India’s Handloom Heritage

Handloom textiles have existed for centuries in the Indian sub continent. Because of its rich and varied heritage there exist today in the country dozens of different handloom sarees that are beginning to attract the attention of younger fashionistas from around the country. Every nook and corner of this vast and magnificent country has its own special handloom technique that has been refined over centuries. These handloom textiles are often hand crafted using age-old techniques passed on from generation to generation by highly skilled artisans and craftsmen. If you are someone who doesn’t know much about the beauty of handloom styles, then you might want to continue reading below to get to know some of the most common handloom textiles from around the country.

Varieties of Handloom Sarees

Benarasi Handloom

Benarasi HandloomHaving their origins in the holy city of Benaras, Benarasi sarees are a marvelous representation of culture, tradition and art entwined together. This is one of the most sought after varieties of handloom sarees in India. These sarees come in a variety of shades and are often designed as half and half sarees. While the body of these sarees feature butties all over, the pallus, on the other hand, showcase marvelous patterns weaved with striking golden threads. A range of motifs, flowers, butties and designs to be featured on these outfits make them highly sought after.

Kancheepuram Handloom

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Kanjeevaram sarees come from the very popular city of Kanchipuram in the state of Tamil Nadu. The city is referred to as the ‘City of a thousand temples’. It is in the bylanes of this ancient city that the silk of the best quality is painstakingly handwoven to create this incredibly resplendent saree style. The main raw materials used in the making of these sarees are pure mulberry silk threads, zari (gold and silver threads) as well as traditional dyes. Kancheepuram silk sarees are an integral part of marriages in South India. Suitable for women of all ages, types of functions and ceremonies, they form an integral part of every Indian Bride’s trousseau.

Bengali Tant Handloom

Bengali Tant Handloom

Tant sarees are soft and lightweight sarees in muslin textures. The Bengali tant handloom saree is one of the best cotton sarees as it makes for great summer wear. These sarees often feature embroidered borders crafted with silk threaded work. The pallus of these sarees often feature elaborate patterns. These sarees are also quite versatile, in that they can be worn for most occasions.

Bandhani Handloom

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The Bandhani handloom saree is one of the famous types of handloom sarees in the country. Having its origins in the state of Gujarat, these are also called the printed handloom khadi sarees due to the tie and dye effect. Apart from sarees, there also exist handloom anarkalis that come feature beautiful panetar, lehariya, and garchola patterns that ooze with traditional magnificence.


Chanderi Handloom

Chanderi Handloom

Having its origins in the state of Madhya Pradesh, the chanderi variety of handloom saree is best known for its lightweight and silky touch. These variety of handloom sarees with zari border and pallus that are designed with traditional motifs and butties. Chanderi sarees make for excellent casual sarees.

Tussar Handloom

Tussar Handloom

Characterized by their cotton fabric texture, tussar silk sarees are yet another example of the rich handloom heritage of India. The silk fabric is produced from the larva obtained from different species of silkworms. Its rich texture and natural deep colour are what add to its incredible vibrancy. These handloom sarees are known for their silky touch. They are one of the specialities of the state of Bihar.

Baluchari Handloom

Most handloom collections and wedding collection online consist of Baluchari handloom sarees. Their existence in this region dates back to 200 years ago. It is said that during the 18th century, the Nawab Murshidquali Khan who ruled the region encouraged this ancient craftsmanship of Bengal. This proved beneficial for Baluchari handloom sarees as they became quite prominent.

Kantha Handloom

One of the best types of handloom sarees to be produced in the state of West Bengal, these sarees are named kantha for the simple patterns or stitching going all over the saree. The artwork showcases a slew of animal, floral, foliage, marine and other natural motifs. The elegant embroidery work makes it a must have for all those formal occasions and gatherings.

Munga Handloom

Munga handloom sarees come from the state of Assam. The natural pale hue of these sarees doesn’t come from any special dying technique but comes naturally. These saree features traditional butties all over the saree including the pallu part