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Gharchola Sari from Gujarat with Zari-Woven Elephants and Peacocks
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Gharchola Sari from Gujarat with Zari-Woven Elephants and Peacocks
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Ikat Weaving Technique

Ikat or Ikkat is a technique that requires forming patterns in yarn stage and employing tie & dye (resist dyeing) for warp / weft threads. The threads undergo repetitive dyeing process depending on the number of colors in the pattern.


These patterns of dyed threads are skillfully assembled by the artisans into warp sheet or weft sequence. This is then prepared for use on handlooms where they are woven into a fabric by trained IKAT weavers.


Repeat tie & dye process on the yarn makes it necessary to use two ply yarn as a standard raw material in Ikat weaving. Additionally in the design stage, a short length of warp is used for handling convenience.


Use of two ply yarns for Ikat enhances the drape, feel, fullness, comfort and the durability of the woven fabric. All Ikat fabrics are identical on both sides and have the distinct feathered look which makes the fabric truly unique and invaluable.


HOW TO DRAPE A SAREE



STEP 1


Two essential pieces of garments, that go alongwith the Sari, need to be chosen carefully to compliment the Sari. These are:


  • petticoat - which is a waist-to-floor garment, tied tightly at the waist by a drawstring. The petticoat color should match the base sari color as closely as possible. No part of the petticoat, of course, is visible outside the Sari, after having worn it.


  • blouse - which needs to be tight-fitting and whose color needs to be chosen keeping the look of the sari in mind, can be short sleeved or sleeveless, with a variety of necklines. The blouse ends just below the bust.



STEP 2


Start wearing the sari by tucking its plain/upper end into the petticoat, at a position which is a little bit to the right of the navel. Make sure that the lower end of the sari should be touching the floor, and that the whole length of the sari comes on the left-hand side. Now wrap the sari around yourself once, with the sari now coming back in the front, on your right side.



STEP 3


Make about 5 to 7 pleats of equal width of 5 inches, starting at the tucked-in end. Gather the pleats together, neatly, ensuring that the lower edge of the pleats are even and just off the ground and that the pleats fall straight and evenly. A safety pin may be used to stop the pleats from scattering.



STEP 4


Neatly tuck the pleats into the petticoat, at the waist, slightly to the left of the navel, in such a manner that they open to your left.



STEP 5


Drape the remaining fabric around yourself once more left to right, and bring it round your hips to the front, holding the top edge of the sari.



STEP 6


Slightly raise the remaining portion of the Sari on your back, bringing it up under the right arm and over the left shoulder so that the end of the Sari falls to about the level of your knees.


The end portion thus draped, from the left shoulder onwards, is called the Pallav or the Pallu, and can be prevented from slipping off teh shoulder, by fastening it at the shoulder to the blouse with a small safety pin.