History and craftsmanship combined with a brilliant blend of colors- that is Paithani silk for you. Once a luxury fabric for Indian royalty, the Paithani silk sari is a coveted possession among Indian women and a must-have for Maharashtrian brides.
Fantasies in color
This 2000-year-old weaving tradition, gets its name from the small town of Paithan (Maharashtra) near Aurangabad. Amidst the clatter of looms, the weavers, typically women, spin out the stuff of dreams–– golden peacocks and parrots, swans, lotus blooms and flowering vines, motifs inspired by the Buddhist murals of the Ajanta caves. The saris come in stunning colors––peach-pink, blue-green, red-green or bright yellow and red, the light-and-shade effect of these tones giving Paithani silk its distinctive, shimmery appeal.
It takes about four weeks to weave a Paithani sari. These fabulous creations retail at high prices in urban markets; yet, the weavers barely earn enough to make ends meet. Since the 1970s, government aided weaving centers have stepped in to ensure better wages, training, and financing for the weavers. Today, contemporary designers seek to popularize Paithani silk weaving and preserve its heritage by incorporating elements of the craft into high street fashions.
Among India’s many-splendored textile traditions, Paithani silk weaving occupies a special niche!