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Stop Everything And Look At The Perfect Saree Types That Will Have You Swinging

Stop Everything And Look At The Perfect Saree Types That Will Have You Swinging

This story was updated in January 2019.


Elegant, striking and fashionable are a few things that may cross your mind when you look at a saree, and rightly so. Wearing a saree takes some courage and some expertise, especially if you are new to the art of draping a saree. But before you can go on to learn the process of draping one, you will need to pick one! Is it going to be a Kanjeevaram saree or a Banarasi saree? Would you prefer it in georgette or silk? And how do you think you should accessorise? All these questions may seem like a lot, but don’t you worry, for we have all the deets you need on saree types, designer sarees, saree draping, types of saree material, and more. Read on!


Saree Types


Versions Of The Saree


Types Of Saree Materials


Steps To Draping A Saree 


Accessories With A Saree


Do's And Don'ts


Origin of The Saree


The oldest unstitched piece of garment in history, the saree has been around since before the Indus Valley Civilisation. After several changes that led to its evolution, the saree reached the stage as we see it today near the Mughal Period in India. A number of rich influences, design techniques and much more came together to give us the quintessential garment we crave in our wardrobes.


Saree Types


We live in a vast country and so it’s only natural that each region and state has something of its own to contribute. Same is the case when it comes to sarees. With various states and regions contributing in offering us gorgeous types of sarees, there are multiple options to look at and shop. Go on, take a look!


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Image source: Instagram


Banarasi Sarees


Deriving its name from the city of Banaras, also known as Varanasi, Banarasi sarees are considered a staple outfit in a bride’s trousseau. The woven intricacies of popular motifs and booties make it an exceptionally beautiful saree to don, complete with the delicate feel of the silk fabric. A traditional silk Banarasi saree is available in several colours, ranging from the popular red, which is considered to be an auspicious colour in Hindu weddings, to the more subtle yellow, pink and many more.


Sambalpuri Sarees


Any of us would easily be able to spot an Ikat pattern, no matter how far away. The Sambalpuri saree incorporates the famous tie and dye pattern that is Ikat and is made exclusively in Orissa, getting its name from the city of Sambalpur. The tie and dye process takes place on the yarns, which are then woven to make them into the Sambalpuri saree, a subtle yet striking type of saree.


Paithani Sarees


Handwoven and made from very fine silk, these sarees that are made primarily in Aurangabad in Maharashtra are known to be extremely rich and elegant and are often used as bridalwear. The main components of it are silk and zari, which go on to give this saree a rich look and a gold accent. Motifs derived from nature and inspired by the flora around us can be seen on these gorgeous sarees.


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Image source: Instagram


Kanjeevaram Sarees


Made in the Kanchipuram region in Tamil Nadu, Kanjeevaram sarees are made using pure mulberry silk. The legends in mythology also state that the first Kanjeevaram saree was made from yarn from the lotus flower by Sage Markandeya who was the weaver for the Gods.


Their geographical region makes them a popular choice of bridal attire in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, though Kanjeevaram sarees are extremely popular and worn all over the country. Checks, stripes, and motifs inspired by nature are found to be a mainstay in a typical Kanjeevaram saree.


Muga Sarees


If you are looking for something unique, this saree type is the one you ought to pick. Muga silk is made from very fine silk obtained from the Muga silkworm, which is found only in Assam and nowhere else in the world, making it one of the rarest kind of fibres used to make a saree. Rich embroideries and natural motifs can be seen on a traditional Muga silk saree.


Chanderi Sarees


We have all heard of the famous town of Chanderi in Madhya Pradesh, known for producing a type of saree that is known by the same name. Made in silk, cotton or Chanderi cotton, Chanderi sarees have been around since the Mughal period, and one look at them will tell you why they continue to be extremely popular even today. Geometric patterns, floral and traditional motifs are found in abundance on this saree, one that is bound to make you look beautiful on all occasions.


Unique  Versions Of The Saree


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Image source: Instagram


Pre-stitched Saree


Pre-stitched saree, as the name suggests, is a saree that is stitched and ready to wear, as opposed to the traditional 6 yards of saree which is draped. For girls who are new to wearing a saree or have a hard time draping one, a pre-stitched saree serves as an excellent option, one you can wear effortlessly and isn’t time-consuming.  


Saree Gown


A gorgeous mix of the Indian and the western, a saree gown incorporates the best of both worlds. Usually marked by a gown-like silhouette and drapes that are inspired by the saree, a saree gown is a perfect pick for a cocktail function or a party.


Half-Saree


Widely popular and worn in South India, a half-saree is a traditional outfit that is generally worn by young girls. The main components of a half-saree are a skirt and a saree-like drape or a pallu, along with the blouse. Unlike the conventional saree, the half-saree is stitched together, making it an easier option for wearing.


Types of Saree Materials


When it comes to wearing a saree, the material from which it is made is of utmost importance. The best saree material is one which not only looks striking but also feels super comfortable for you to carry effortlessly. Whether you are going for a sheer look or a crisp look with the help of a synthetic fabric, there are many types to saree materials to look at.


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Image source: Instagram


Silk


A natural fibre that is usually woven to form a saree, silk is a popular material when it comes to picking up a saree. It is well-known for its shine or lustre and its smooth feel. Worn at gatherings, weddings and a number of functions in India, a silk saree is a beautiful and timeless option.


Crepe


You must have heard the word crepe, which refers to a synthetic fabric known for its crimped appearance. Ranging from silk crepe to plain-weave crepe, the fabric has a number of variations, making it an apt choice for saree material. Not only this, the fabric has an excellent drape, and a great feel- the essential factors required in a saree.


Chiffon


Literally translating to the word ‘rag’ in French, chiffon is a plainly woven sheer fabric that is lightweight and comes with a smooth texture. Its lightness makes it a great option as a type of saree material, and it is commonly used in making the same. It is also softer and thinner than georgette, a relatively similar fabric.


Georgette


Perhaps the best strength of georgette, when looked at as a type of saree material, is that it drapes beautifully and gives way to a great fall. In a departure from chiffon, it has a grainy feel and is slightly heavier than chiffon. It is also known to rip, so it is important that it is worn with care.


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Image source: Instagram


Designer Sarees


Image source: Instagram


In contrast to the basic saree that can be worn on a day-to-day basis is a designer saree. Carrying key design elements like embroidery, delicate prints, embellishment, beads, handwork and traditional as well as modern elements, a designer saree can be worn on any grand event, be it a family function, a wedding, a pre-wedding ceremony or a party where you need to be dressed in ethnic wear. With a number of leading designers and brands making latest versions of the 6 yards, you can easily get your hands on a designer saree for your next big outing. Not only is a designer saree fashionable and pretty, but it is also bound to leave a mark.


Saree Draping


Draping a saree is no mean feat, especially if you are new to the quintessential 6 yards. There are various ways in which a saree can be draped, with styles of draping varying in different regions in India. Be it the famous Nauvari drape adorned by Deepika Padukone and Priyanka Chopra in Bajirao Mastani, the popular Assamese Mekhela Chadar, or the beautiful Santhal drape from Jharkhand, you have plenty of styles to look at when it comes to the art of saree draping. A basic, classic style, however, has the same essential tips, come what may. Here’s a breakdown of the steps to draping a saree like a pro.


Step 1. Make sure you are wearing a petticoat that matches to the colour of your saree. A petticoat is basically a skirt with a drawstring, that acts as an underskirt for your saree.


Step 2. Pick a comfortable option that you can wear without feeling hassled.


Step 3. Once you have worn your petticoat and the blouse, tuck your saree into your petticoat and take it around once.


Step 4. When the base is secure, create even-sized pleats and tuck them collectively together into the front of the saree.


Step 5. Bring the pallu over your left shoulder and pin it, either creating pleats from the pallu or letting it flow freely.


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Image source: Instagram


There are many other tricks when it comes to wearing a saree in different ways, with different styles and types of drapes. If you have already mastered the trick of wearing the saree with a basic drape (congrats, girl!) go for different styles of drapes to give your saree an all new look. You can read about different styles of saree draping here.


Accessories To Pair With A Saree


Traditional Jewellery


Jewellery with traditional roots is commonly worn in grand functions or weddings in India. Be it gold jewellery, polki jewellery, or diamond jewellery, there are numerous styles you can rely on while looking for accessories and jewellery to pair with your saree. Here are some of the popular choices you will want to look at while choosing from traditional jewellery options.


Nose Pin or Nose Ring


Ever seen your mom wearing a nose ring or the nath? It’s a major part of the traditional trousseau of an Indian woman. Elegant and graceful, the nose ring, nose pin or nath, call it what you may, is an excellent choice of jewellery.


Bindi


It is very unlikely that you will forget the bindi while donning a traditional saree. A graceful addition to your attire, a bindi can be small or huge, plain or colourful, embellished, round or in different designs. Either way, it’s bound to bring with it a new, beautiful look to your saree.


Maang Tika


Worn on the forehead, a maang tika is an elegant piece of jewellery that is generally worn by brides and brides-to-be on their wedding functions. However, these days, a simple maang tika is also worn by guests at weddings and other party functions.


Toe Rings


Remember toe rings? Bet you do! They are stylish accessories worn by women around the world. In case you want to bring a bit of bling to your look, opt for gold or silver toe rings with precious or semi-precious stones.


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Image source: Instagram


Necklaces and Earrings


Be it a layered necklace, an opulent necklace with precious stones, or a traditional necklace, this jewellery type looks excellent with a saree, giving a gorgeous look to your overall attire. Speaking of earrings, jhumkas, chandelier earrings and ear studs are all the rage and add emphasis to your saree.


Statement Jewellery  


Not big on traditional jewellery and looking to wear something different instead? Statement jewellery to the rescue! Go the stylish route with pendants, chains, rings, hair accessories and more.


Belts


Add a waist belt to your saree to give it a desi chic look. It’s also a great way to cinch the waist. A classic black leather belt or a cloth one to match your saree, there’s a lot to experiment with. You could even borrow your mom’s kamarband if going the extra mile with your accessory is what you have in mind.


Hair Accessories


Be it a stylish clip, or an embellished hairband, a statement hair accessory can uplift your look if your saree is simple. If it’s a wedding you’re attending, go with a quirky maangtika to stand out!


Brooches and Pins


The fact that a saree requires to be pinned up in certain parts is common knowledge, but you can also use it to your advantage! Look for elaborate pins that go well with your saree, or add a fashionable brooch on the side for a unique look.


Handbags and Clutches


One can never leave home without their phone, cash, cards and lipstick! And your regular handbag is not a great option when wearing a saree. Carry an ethnic potli, a stylish embellished clutch or pretty sling, depending on what goes with your saree best.


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Image source: Instagram


Do's and Don'ts of Wearing A Saree


If you are wearing a saree for the first time, there are some pointers and tips you need to keep in mind. Take a look at the do’s and don’ts of wearing a saree right.


Do’s


1. Swap your flats with heels. Heels give a better fall to your saree.


2. Pin it at the pleats and pallu to avoid the hassle of fixing it all the time.


3. Make sure the length of your petticoat is just right. It should not be shorter or longer than the saree and should match the colour perfectly.


4. Do wear your heels before you start tying the saree.


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Image source: Instagram


Don’ts


1. Don’t wear an ill-fitting bra that you might feel uncomfortable in.


2. Don’t create uneven pleats that look out of place in your saree.


3. Don’t go overboard with accessories while looking for jewellery and statement pieces to match your saree.


Ready to choose your favourite type of saree and drape it the right way then?!


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Published on Jan 17, 2019
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