More than just a garment: Saree as a canvas for artists
Each delicate strand of thread chosen with love and care. Each elegant splash of the colour picked from the vast palette with a clear purpose. Each glittering embellishment made with thought and skill of ages. All to put together to form a hitherto unseen piece of art, handmade with an exquisiteness unique to the garment we Indians call our own, the saree. Six yards of pure grace!
When the weaver weaves this piece of art, he puts his soul into it through the magic nestled in his fingertips. An unassuming mass of thread then becomes the length of cloth touched by the hand of God. But, hold your horses, this saree is never considered complete! Not until it serves its actual purpose, that of being draped on a woman's curves.
In India, since ages ago, a picture of a woman was never considered complete without the gorgeous piece of cloth wrapped around her. The beauty of the woman is directly proportional to her saree. Call forth to your mind's eye the gorgeous figure of Deepika Padukone in Padmavat, or perhaps that of Priyanka Chopra in Deewani Mastani. Would they look like the goddesses they are without that shimmering and glowing piece of cloth wrapped around them?
It is perhaps the most versatile garment, it becomes whatever you want it to become. From the commonly seen left shoulder drape to the Gujarati back to front drape to Maharashtrian dhoti drape. A saree has seen numerous forms and styles. It always comes back for more.
There exists a curious custom in many Indian marriage ceremonies. The meaning in itself is very powerful, but what is used to symbolise this meaning is rather curious. The ritual is one in which the groom's family promises to protect and care for the bride who will now be a part of their family. And what do you think is used to signify this beautiful promise? If you thought 'saree', give yourself a hundred points for pure luck. Yes! It is a saree. The very first gift the bride receives from a groom. Is it any wonder this garment has become so deeply entrenched in our culture?
A sheer gossamer white for purity, a luscious red for sensuality, a profound blue for nobility, a playful fuchsia for naïveté. There is a saree to signify every mood and occasion.
Like an enchanting butterfly flittering from flower to flower, spreading its colours but never really stopping for permanence. So is a saree clad woman, spreading her beauty wherever she goes. Always there at the edge of your vision but never within touching distance. She glides along like a fairy from the myths, catching a guileless artist or two, filling their minds with her magic. The little lost sheep then sets his brush to the canvas, immortalizing her for generations to come. As the fairy flutters away, all that is left of he is perhaps the last brush of the divine piece of silk flowing from her shoulders, against fingertips reaching out.
Today, this beauty has been caught and is displayed to us in sterile showrooms, hanging against the walls, waiting to be taken for their beauty to again be released to the world. This still saree still tells us stories. Its vivid colours speaking of those that loved in its folds. Of those that shed blood in its folds. Of those that gave rise to a new life in its folds. Of those that saved the world in its folds. Of those that ruled the world in its folds. And those that gave up their breath in its folds. Each thread weaves its own story, merging with others like strokes of paint to form a glorious vision. One in no way inferior to the canvases of world-famous artists.
Get yourself your own piece of this stunning canvas carrying its own stories at thevama.com. Premium online retail for authentic handmade sarees from Bengal, each piece here is handcrafted with extensively painstaking human labour and the perfection of finely aged skill. It definitely does not get any better than that.