Saree Utsav – Saree Summery – The Saree Festival – Kolkata 2017
I was incredibly happy and honored to be a part of the Saree Utsav that was held in Kolkata recently. It was utter joy when I heard from one of the most notable and eccentric’ Saree revolutionist of India- Himanshu Verma‘ who has been a Saree Activist, an art curator and staunch supporter of the saree himself, he organizes The Saree Festival, a series of exhibitions around the country that share his vision and love for the textile. For over a decade he has been wearing sarees himself and has spoken over the subject over Tedex and many other notable documentaries.
I was asked to be one of the Panelist on the Saree styling discussion and the experience turned out overwhelming. I am young and still learning the vast history,weaves and types of the Sarees. This event marked great learning and understanding in terms of awareness and views of what commoners about us feel about the 9/6 yard piece of clothing . We had a very important discussion over ‘Why kolkata doesn’t have a wedding saree? this question was put up by the owner of the Weaver’s Studio, Kolkata : Darshan. All what we have seen for years is Bengali brides wearing Benarasis on their wedding eves. This commenced a very stimulating discussion and discovered a variety of views and facts.
It was speculated that the wedding saree was Baluchari much before Benarasi in Bengal. According to research of Sonali Bhattacharya [Love for the Loom] we later learned that the traditional wedding saree of Bengal is Cheli, Patta Bostra : Saree made of jute. This was considered to be the oldest and most traditional. Balucharis and Benarasis came much later in the picture.
We had a rapid fire where our persuasions were exchanged, other than me on the panel, there were two very favorite people: Karuna Ezara Parikh [Writer, Model, and Poetess] there are many feathers to her cap, apart from the striking tattoos over her body, her enchanting personality and writings are celebrated, making her even more beautiful inside out.
Pushpak Sen on the other hand is my very close friend, brother. He is a handloom aficionado himself and does very tasteful writings at The Bong Munda.
Himanshu made us speak our views on personal saree choices, how and when do we like wearing it, different saree styles we prefer. It is cumbersome to wear daily? do we wear it in specific weather etc
I feel whenever I wear a sari, I feel empowered by the fact that I am wearing and representing my own culture and heritage. I don’t need a specific reason or season.
Here is a picture gallery of the fun we had over hot chais and khandvis
Anytime I wear a saree I instantly feel graceful. It embodies power and sensuality both. I feel the saree really embodies my values of detail. It will never go out of fashion. its a timeless piece of clothing that does not come with manuals. Its limitless !
The saree comprises stories, memories and lives are woven into it. They embrace you as you wrap it around your body.
Toh Bolo ‘Jai Saree!!’
Wearing : Montage by Sukhada Chavan