Banarasi saree as the name says is originated from a city called Banaras in India. These are one among the finest sarees made in India. It is known for its gold and silver zari, fine silk and embroidery. Banarasi sarees are made up of a special kind of silk which is found in Banaras. The silk is finely woven and decorated with delicate designs. It might take from 15 days to a month and at times 6 months to complete a banarasi saree, depending upon the intricacy of its design and pattern. These sarees are worn by Indian women on important occasions like weddings and other events.
Banarasi silk is a unique type of art. It was brought in India the Mughal craftsman who was expert in intricate art of weaving and designs. The designs in the banarasi saree are inspired by Mughal designs such as intricate floral designs; string of leaves called jhallar at the border of the saree is a key characteristic of these sarees. These sarees depict a look of elegance and royalty. Features of banarasi saree are gold work, figures with tiny details, net work with pattern, mina work etc. It is rightly said that, if one wants a women to elegant and delicate at the same time, then just give her a banarasi saree. This royal drape fits perfectly in every Indian woman’s wardrobe.
It’s a part of ancient art and culture, to provide Banarasi sarees with silk. This artistry culture has been passed on from one generation to another since ages. Usually minimum three craftsmen work together to prepare one banarasi saree on a power loom. The designs are first drawn on a paper by the artisans and then they are imprinted as a pattern by punch cards.
They are few varieties of Banarasi sarees. Katan is plain pure silk sarees produced in power looms. Organza with zari and silk are also known as brocades which are very beautifully and richly woven silk fabric with different designs and patterns. Silver or gold threads are woven around the silk to make zari brocade. Georgette is finely woven light fabric with a plain weave. This fabric is most popular for preparing designer sarees, latest salwar kameez designs. Shattir is a fabric used in creating contemporary designs of banarasi sarees.
There are different designs to classify Banarasi sarees. In jangla style, sarees are woven in colourful silk threads. It has delicate Jangla vegetation motif patterns that spread across the length of the saree. They are one of the ancient ones among the banarasi sarees.
Tanchoi is a design where jamawar style work is woven by zari to all value to this style of saree, making it appropriate for wedding functions. They are woven in colourful silk threads. The pallu of this saree is decorated with large designs while the borders with criss cross patterns.
Cut work sarees are less expensive version of banarasi sarees. They are prepared with cut work technique on plain texture. They are also called as Jamdani sarees. They are produced by placing warp threads and preparing traditional design patterns. The popular patterns featured in cut work sarees are jasmine, marigold, creepers and leaves.
Tissue sarees are delicate sarees with golden zari which adds sheen to the tissue sarees. It is also called as golden cloth. The most used design patterns on this saree are lotus floating in a pond. The border and pallu are full of paisley patterns.
Butidar sarees are richly woven silk which has brocades made up of gold, silver and silk. The weavers call it as Ganga-Jamuna pattern.