The incredible precision, patience, and artistry of India are seemingly recognized around the globe. The features that depict the Indian handicraft are absolutely jaw-dropping with its vibrancy, intricacy and sheer techniques. Among the numerous apparel art forms practiced in India, one of the precious crafts done with the dying method of “tie-dye” rules the Indian heart and also the pride of India. The age-old process of “tie-dyeing” on the drapery of saree has got a special recognition as the “Patola” saree. The Patola saree is the second most adored tie-dyed apparel after the treasured “Bandhani Saree”.
The customary tale of patola saree starts from the state of Gujarat that lies in the western part of India. The place called patan around 127 kilometers away from Ahmadabad in Gujarat makes the origination towards the patola art that dates back to 700 years ago. The artistic approach towards patola was inherited by the “Selvi” caste of weavers who belonged to Maharashtra and Karnataka and got settled in Gujarat. They speculated that it is the best place for the silk fabric of patola. They made it their land of business and the trade started flourishing tremendously. The women in Gujarat absolutely adored this art form in the saree and patola saree soon became more of a status symbol for them. The technique of making the patola design is not at all a straightforward and easy task. It requires the expert skills, knowledge and right method to complete the process successfully. It is a tedious, time consuming and calculative activity that requires a precise and constant concentration.
The specialty while manufacturing the patola silk sarees is that the weft and warp yarns are first dyed before weaving them. This particular technique of dying both warp and a weft thread is called as “double-ikat” and that’s why the patola saree is also known as “double-ikat” or ikat silk sarees. The duration to make just the design for tie-dye on the warp and weft thread takes about 3 to 4 months for a single saree of 6 yards in length and 48 inches in width. Two workers in a day weave just 8 inches to 9 inches on the saree and it takes approximate of 40 to 50 days to weave the whole saree. If 4 to 5 weavers are working on the single saree it takes a minimum duration of 5 to 6 months or it may take more time depending on the intricacy of the design.
The distinguishing designs practiced on patola sarees are the geometric patterns. The other specific designs such as boxes, stripes, squares, floral, leaf, patterns of five petal flowers i.e. panchphool are formed on the saree. While dying mostly natural dyes are incorporated that are extracted from turmeric, marigold flower, pomegranate skin, henna etc. The designs are created by tying knots on the silk warp and weft threads. The silk yarns are separately tied with cotton threads only on the portions where the parts are already marked with the decided designs on the fabric. The tied parts remain unexposed to dye and other portion which is absorbed in color will be tied before dying it in another color of dye. This repeated process of tying, untying, retying and dying are the main features towards the production of patola saree. The weaving process is carried out on the traditional hand operated loom which is made of rosewood and bamboo. The loom has a slant position where the left side is at the lower angle than the right side. The bamboo shuttle moves to and fro along the warp direction. During the process, each weft thread is examined thoroughly and it is matched carefully with the warp design pattern while weaving.
Now you can shop this gorgeous drapery of traditional patola saree at your very own “Samyakk” store that brings for you the numerous options of color schemes and patterns to suit your personality beautifully for the occasion.