It’s officially my first chance at procuring, wearing and learning about weaves that aren’t part of the mainstream saree narrative – and discovering Saaranga Chennai was instrumental in making this long overdue event of my six yard revival journey happen. South India has a plethora of handwoven treasures, each state having it’s array of weaves right from the affordable to the resplendent. The Chedi Butta – woven in Veeravanallur – is one such daintily beautiful weave, that has roots all the way across the subcontinent. The weavers of this type of saree hail from Saurashtra, in the western desert of Kutch. Quite a surprise, isn’t it? Smruthi N, the founder of Saaranga, talks about this story on her blog My Saree Stories – and I’d definitely recommend uncovering this trail right at that source.
A little something about Saaranga – this label by Smruthi Narasimhan connects customers with weaves commissioned directly from weavers of different parts of Tamil Nadu. In the era of power looms, there are very few skilled artisans who continue to practice their age old handloom heritage as a technique to weave the saree. Every saree of Saaranga Chennai is sourced from these slow, artisanal looms.
Based in Chennai, Tamil Nadu; Saaranga reinvents the traditional for a contemporary aesthetic. This Chedi Butta was my first from the label, and I loved it for it’s delicate shimmer – which can truly be enjoyed in sight of the eye far more than it gives away on a screen. It’s gossamer, lightweight, delicate and dainty – and the pops of colour from the extra weft figuring make it delightfully versatile. I’ve worn it with a pastel pink blouse, and a mandarin collared linen blouse till now – both my own designs – and it’s been a dream to style. Repeating is beautiful!