CHANDERI Saris, Chanderi

By Lala Ram Koli kolilalaram15@gmail.com | 2023

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1. A friend Bindu K introduced me to master weaver Lala Ram Koli who shared pictures from his collection of saris, zari tissue sari, half silk half cotton sari, suit piece and dupatta. Jhansi to Chanderi is about 165 kms (takes app 3 hours). Indore to Chanderi about 390 kms, takes seven hours. From Orchha there are taxis which do day trips to Chanderi 150 kms.

2. Pranpur village is the weaving hub in Chanderi. Bindu wrote, “Chanderi saris are woven with silk and cotton threads and they are lustrous. A small shout out to Fab India as they have nearly 400+ weavers in Chanderi weaving the saris they sell countrywide.”

3. Bindu wrote, “Chanderi Sarees have a GI tag. They are almost muslin like and were as famed as the Dhakai Muslin. Mostly these saris are woven with silk thread in the warp and cotton thread in the weft, leading to the lustre that’s associated with them. There are pure silk and pure cotton Chanderi saris as well.”

4. Bindu wrote, “There are nearly 4,000 weavers in Pranpur village. Fab India is one of the largest customers for these saris. The Govt of Madhya Pradesh is also taking extra efforts to sustain the art of weaving at Pranpur. Digital India has made its mark here. I paid for all my purchases through GPay!” To read Bindu blog https://90rollsroyces.com/2022/11/21/pranpur-village-chanderi/

5. A 55 seconds video on weaving in Pranpur village. https://90rollsroyces.com/2022/11/21/pranpur-village-chanderi/

6. Visit Chanderi Fort too. Captions by editor.

7. Love the blue.

8. Bridal colour.

9. Half cotton half silk.

10. Regional handloom expert Ninad wrote, “Maheshwaris and Chanderis are made of cotton by silk yarns. Chanderi saris are also woven in pure silk - both warp (vertical yarns - called ‘Tana’ in local central Indian dialect) and weft (yarns moving horizontally across the loom called ‘Bana’) have silk. Maheshwaris, however, mostly have silk warp but the weft is cotton. Silk in both warp and weft of Maheshwaris is very rare.”

11. Ninad wrote, “In Chanderis, the entire burden of design is carried by the extra-weft buttis. The borders are often very simple with buttis lend the most to the design. On the contrary, in Maheshwaris, the border of the saree plays the most crucial role in design.”

12. Ninad wrote, “Chanderi features mostly curvilinear motifs. The design directory here is dominated by florals, leaves, vines, peacocks, swans, trees, fruits and the majestic architecture of the Chanderi town.”

13. Ninad wrote, “Some of the most commonly used motifs in Chanderi sarees are ashrafi or gold coin, churi, bundi, keri, phul-patti, phul-buta, akhrot, paan, eent, surajbutti, meenabutti, kalgi and ghoongra, nalferma, dandidar, chatai, jangla, mehndi wale haath. After looking at various motifs, it is safe to say that Chanderi designs have a considerable Mughal influence.”

14. Love this colour. Ninad wrote, “Another interesting thing worth mentioning about Chanderis is that the usage of bright, vibrant colours like magenta, orange, fuchsia is a newborn phenomenon. Until 50 years ago, Chanderis were woven in pastels and tones of off-white with sarees being dyed in natural colours like saffron after it was fully woven.”

15. Ninad wrote, “Handloom Chanderis are papery but neither extremely stiff nor extremely soft. The saree drapes really well because of the appropriate balance between stiffness and softness.”

16. Chanderi. “The handloom was used to weave Chanderi sarees for royalty between the 12th C. and 13th C. Indian royal women loved the Chanderi fabric because of its soft, transparent, and lightweight features.”

17. Chanderi. “In the olden days, the throw-shuttle pit looms with two weavers were used, however today; fly-shuttle looms are used with one weaver. Earlier, yarn for weaving was coloured with natural dye, nowadays natural and chemical dyes are used. To weave a Chanderi saree takes more than three days and sometimes more depending on the complexity of the design.”

18. Dupata. “The transparency and sheer texture of Chanderi fabric have earned it the name ‘woven air’. Being lightweight and having a glossy texture makes Chanderi sarees different from other woven garments produced in India. The high quality and extra fine yarns used to weave the Chanderi sarees makes this fabric stronger than other fabrics.”

19. “The yarns don’t go through the degumming process to prevent breakage during weaving giving the fabric its unique texture and shine.”

20. “Chanderi sarees are among the most elegant sarees that add beauty and charm to anyone who wears one. These sarees come in different varieties, varying colours, and unique designs with beautiful borders that are to die for.”

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27. Bindu wrote, “Besides sarees, the Pranpur village also has pottery and terracotta work being done. We visited a pottery class happening at one of the houses. For authentic hand woven Chanderi Sarees and suit material, please contact Lala Ram Koli 91 97704 44729 and 91 70247 25163. He is also a tour guide and can take you around to the interesting tourist spots nearby.”

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29. Kurta Dupatta Suit.

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44. Chanderi. To see album Handlooms of Manipur https://www.esamskriti.com/a/Manipur/Textiles-n-Handlooms-of-Manipur.aspx

45. Chanderi. To see album Sualkuchi Saris Assam https://www.esamskriti.com/a/Assam/SARIS-of-SUALKUCHI-Assam.aspx

46. Chanderi. To see album of Paithani Saris Aurangabad https://www.esamskriti.com/a/Maharashtra/Paithani-Sarees-Aurangabad.aspx

47. Chanderi. To see album of Maheshwari Saris https://www.esamskriti.com/a/Madhya-Pradesh/Maheshwari-Sarees-Maheshwar.aspx

48. Chanderi. To read about Chanderi Fort https://www.esamskriti.com/e/Culture/India-Travel-ad-Yatras/About-Chanderi-Fort,-Madhya-Pradesh-1.aspx

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