When it comes to traditional Indian clothing, one just cannot go wrong with elegant silk sarees. The nine yard beauties are reliable choices, no matter what the time or occasion is. Pure Elegance is stoked to present a wide selection of silk saris in USA, in a plethora of colors, designs, and fabrics.
Saree is a relatively broad category housing very many styles. Embroidered sarees, embellished sarees, printed sarees, chiffon saree, half and half sarees – the list is almost endless. In this wonderfully long list is a pick that is eternally gorgeous and evergreen in ethnic fashion and that is silk sarees. Loved by women of all generations, silk saris are one of the most popular choices in ethnic fashion for women.
WHAT IS SPECIAL ABOUT INDIAN SILK SAREES?
India is a land of rich textiles and fabrics and out of this humongous range of fabrics, silk is the queen! Premium and gorgeous, silk fabric is known for its richness and fine quality. Extensively used across the country, one can call it as the darling of ethnic fashion. Silk sarees are often referred to as fashion investments because of their timeless and versatile nature. From grandmothers to young brides at Indian weddings, silk is a popular choice. Silk defines luxury to a whole new level with its utter shine, softness and royal appeal.
HISTORY OF SILK IN INDIA
The existence of silk can be dated back to Indus valley civilization between 2450 and 2000 BC. The archeological evidence of Chanhu-daro and Harappa affirms the use of wild silk threads from silk worms in sericulture, which indicated its use in South Asia during the period of Indus Valley. Two species were known to produce Indus silks- Antheraea and Philosamia or Eri silk. The techniques of degumming and reeling in silk processing are believed to be of Chinese origin.
In India, due to a massive demand for silk from rich and royal families, the weaving of brocade was developed near holy cities or capital of the kingdoms. Affluent merchants played a prominent role in the development of silk fabric; they lent money to the weavers for purchasing expensive raw materials like zari and silk. In ancient India, the centers of weaving were located in South India, Gujarat and Malwa. The weavers of North from Delhi, Agra, Lahore and many more were highly influenced by the weaving patterns of Turkey, East and South Persia, Afghanistan and Central Asia.
King Akbar played a major role in supervising the weaving workshops of the royals in Agra, Fatehpur Sikri and Lahore. The intermingling of expertise with weavers of various regions and backgrounds led to the designing of beautiful latifa booti with expertise from Persia and India. Mughals gave a special attention to silk-weaving and sericulture which flourished during that period and silk from Punjab became prized across the world. Multan and Lahore became main silk industry centers.
Today, silk is produced in five major states of India including West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Jammu and Kashmir which are responsible for 97% of the raw silk production in the country. North Bangalore and Mysore account for major silk production.
35 TYPES OF SILK FABRICS AND SAREES IN INDIA
There will never be enough of silk fabrics in India, the ever evolving varieties and forms keep expanding the realm of silk which can’t be counted on finger tips! Let us take a peek into some of the popular types of silk fabrics which are used to create elegant silk sarees, suits, and lehengas. The four major types of silk fabrics include muga silk, tussar silk, mulberry silk and eri silk.
MUGA SILK: Assam silk has three major varieties of silk: muga silk, eri silk and white pat. Muga silk is known for its durability, high gloss, and fine texture. It is a dye able silk, though earlier it was thought that it can’t be dyed. Muga silk can be hand washed and the shine of the fabric increases with each wash.
- MULBERRY SILK: It is one of the most exquisite and popular varieties of silk. The off white and white color of the silk is due to white Mulberry plant which is the only source of food for the silk cocoon. The silk worms are reared indoors. Mulberry silk is luxurious and has a super glossy feel. The main states which produce Mulberry silk in India are Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Most of the silk varieties are created using Mulberry worms in India.
TUSSAR SILK: The silkworms which produce Tussar silk live in wild forests. Tussar silk is produced from larvae of various species of silk worms. It has deep gold colors and a rich texture. Tassar silk is more textured than Mulberry silk; due to the short threads and fibers, it is less durable in nature. Tussar silk sarees is one of the most important products of this silk and is cherished by the saree lovers due to its rustic appeal.
- ERI SILK: This is also a variety of Assam silk and is known as non-violent silk because the silk processing allows the pupa to convert into an adult and silk is only produced from the open-ended cocoons. It is used to makes quilts and shawls due to its warm and soft quality.
- MYSORE SILK: The silk cultivated in the Mysore district of Karnataka is known as Mysore silk. Mysore silk sarees are famous across the country for their vibrant colors and luxurious feel. The sarees are made from 100 percent genuine silk and pure gold zari (comprises 65% silver and 0.65% pure gold). The saree is made from raw materials acquired from a single cocoon. The raw material then goes to silk industry for measuring and preparing the silk fiber. The further process involves the steps of soaking, twisting, wefting, and winding. After winding, the prepared yarn is ready for weaving into a fabric. The weaving takes place on two types of loom and after the saree is ready, it undergoes degumming to smooth out the texture. The sarees are then dyed and washed.
KANJEEVARAM SILK: The most rich and expensive variety of silk from the region of Kanchipuram in Tamil Nadu. It is also known as Kanchipuram silk. Kanchipuram silk sarees are considered equivalent to Banarasi silk sarees. The silk fabric is woven from the threads of pure Mulberry silk. The zari used in Kanjivaram silk sarees comes from Gujarat and the Mulberry silk comes from South India. The saree is woven on three shuttles. Designs are elaborate with heavy borders including temple designs, floral, checker design and butas. The fabric has a rich shine and involves a high level of skill and craftsmanship to create beautiful designs.
BANARASI SILK: Banarasi silk fabric is made from pure silk threads also called Katan. When talking of Banarasi silk, a beautiful Banarasi silk saree adorned with elaborate zari motifs and intricate designs comes to our mind. Banarasi silk sarees are from the city of Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. The whole fabric is decorated with beautiful gold and silver brocade making the sarees one of the best varieties of traditional Indian saree.
PASHMINA SILK: It is woven in Kashmir and is one of the finest types of silk used in making sarees and shawls. The Pashmina is obtained from four different varieties of Cashmere goats and the quality of Pashmina is determined by a ring test. The threads are so small that the fabric is woven by hand only. Pashmina silk is a blend of two beautiful and fine materials which produce a fabric with a very soft, fluid and has a warm feel. The designs on Pashmina silk sarees are marked by fine thread or Kashida embroideries and are an exceptional example of Kashmiri craftsmanship.
- KHADI SILK: Khadi is a word which was glorified by Mahatma Gandhi and is a pride of India. The yarns are made from cotton and silk on a spinning wheel or chakra, which are then used to make Khadi silk fabric. It is known for its distinctive raw and coarse texture. Khadi silk is a durable and strong fabric and its appeal is enhanced with each wash. One of the versatile features of Khadi silk is, it remains cool in summer and warm in winters. Khadi silk sarees are often minimal in designs with a hint of color and zari on borders or sometimes delicate embroideries.
JAMDANI SILK: Jamdani weaving is done on brocade by a loom and the designs are beautiful floral motifs and figures. It is also known as muslin cloth with a characteristic grey and white weaving or sometimes it is a blend of gold and cotton threads. The art is practiced in West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh. Today, the weaving process takes place with a blend of cotton and silk threads. The fabric can be woven entirely in silk with a beautiful combination of gold, silver and metal yarns. Jamdani sarees are a beautiful drape and show the detailing of fine weaving on the fabric with exquisite designs.
UPPADA SILK: Uppada silk is made in Uppada town of Andhra Pradesh. The Uppada silk has a connection with Jamdani weaving. In the 19th century, Jamdani saw a decline because of the industrial revolution in England. This art of weaving re-emerged slowly in 20th century. In the year 1988, Jamdani weaving was introduced in Uppada where the designs were made closer to those in Andhra Pradesh and hence it led to a new variety called Uppada silk sarees. The process of Jamdani weaving in Uppada involves a single loom and two weavers who create beautiful intricate motifs and designs on fabric using zari. The sarees are light weight and are more expensive than other silk sarees.
MATKA SILK: Matka silk is also known as rough handloom silk, as the fabric is obtained from a thick yarn spun from Mulberry, a silk worm. This creates an earthy raw texture with a hand woven appeal. The fabric has a close resemblance to tweed but the fibers are of the same color. Matka silk is versatile, comfortable and light and is popularly used to create elegant Matka silk sarees and suits.
CHANDERI SILK: Chanderi comes from the heart of India, Madhya Pradesh. The variety of Chanderi is produced from three different fabrics: cotton, silk and cotton silk. The sarees shows a beautiful display of motifs, floral designs, geometric patterns and peacock motifs. Chanderi silk sarees are a pride of India and show exquisite craftsmanship with their zari work or gold and silver brocade and fine silk.
TANCHOI SILK: Tanchoi is actually a weaving technique which involves single or double warp and around two to five colors on weft which are of the same color on silk fabric. The weaving is small, delicate and defined with intricate designs on the fabric mostly including floral designs, peacock, parrots, and birds. The background fabric of Tanchoi sarees has satin finishing. Extra threads on the sarees give the illusion of embroidery. The art of weaving was started in Gujarat which spread to Banaras where weavers made an inexpensive version of the saree and they integrated zari in the saris. Tanchoi silk sarees are mostly worn in autumn or winter months.
RAW SILK: Raw silk is also known as Paat in Eastern states of India, Pattu in South and Resham in Urdu. The fabric is made from delicate fibers, which are woven on a loom. Fibers have a gleaming appearance due to their triangular structure which acts like a prism, thus the final silk fabric made from them scatters light in different directions which give a stunning mix of colors on the fabric. It is one of the famous varieties of silk for sarees, Raw silk sarees are a one of a kind with vibrant colors and alluring designs.
- ART SILK: Artificial silk or artificial silk is a look alike of pure silk made from synthetic fibers. The silk is cheaper, and the name is a synonym of rayon. When art silk is made from bamboo viscose, it is called bamboo silk. In today’s scenario, art silk sarees are made from polyester, rayon, and mercerized cotton. The appearance is quite distinct and inferior from pure silk. Though, they are a good alternative for people who don’t want to invest too much on a saree and want to have a feel of silk.
- BANGALORE SILK: As the name suggests, Bangalore silk is from Bangalore, Karnataka. It has a beautifully silky texture and is an absolutely pure form of silk. The silk is cultivated on silk farms which have existed for several years. Bangalore silk sarees are one of the first choices when it comes to marriages and other celebrations. A variety of silk saris is embroidered to highlight their beauty for festive occasions. The sarees were made earlier only in dark shades with a beautifully woven pallu with gold threads. But today, a whole new realm of sarees with a myriad of designs are available including printed silk sarees, crepe silk sarees, double- colored sarees and many more.
PAITHANI SILK: The word Paithani comes from Paithan, a town in Aurangabad, Maharashtra. It is a distinctive and famous variety of saree from the region which is worn by women on weddings and festivals. Paithani silk sarees are known for their vibrant colors decorated with exquisite borders in oblique square design which are accompanied by the beautiful peacock or parrots designs on pallu. The sarees are available in plain as well as buta design. Paithani sarees have a kaleidoscopic effect which is created using one color for lengthwise weaving and one color for widthwise weaving.
- POCHAMPALLI SILK: Pochampally silk sarees are from Bhudan Pochamaplly in Telangana state. The sarees have a distinct and exquisite ikkat design in its weaving which makes them extraordinary. The sarees are made in silk, cotton, and sico fabrics and are a bright blend of colors.
PATOLA SILK: Patola sarees are woven sarees with double ikat design and are usually made in silk. The sarees are from Patan in Gujarat. Patola silk sarees are expensive and the art of weaving is confined to three families in the region of Patan who pass it onto their sons only. The colors are vibrant with intricate geometric patterns.
- BHAGALPURI SILK: It is also called as Tussar silk and is a technique of dyeing silk saris in Bhagalpur, Bihar. The fabric is used to create famous Bhagalpuri silk saris. Bhagalpuri silk is also called ‘Queen of all fabrics’. Bhagalpuri sarees have excellent resilience and the fabric is a perfect form of silk cocoon.
- PAT SILK: It is the Mulberry silk of Assam. Pat silk has a stunning off-white or white color. The pat silk fabric can easily dry in shadow. The silkworm larva of pat favored food is nuni or Mulberry plant leaves. Pat silk fabric has a natural white shade and has a beautiful glossy texture and high durability.
- MURSHIDABAD SILK: The silk fabric is made in Indian since centuries and the weaving style differs from state to state. Murshidabad silk is used in the making of Indian as well as western attires and is made in Murshidabad, West Bengal. The fabric has a beautiful shine and is known for its fine quality. Lately, the industry is losing its value due to low profitability.
- NARAYANPET SILK: A town in Telangana called Narayanpet makes beautiful Narayanpet silk saris. The sarees have a distinct design with a checker pattern and embroidery. Borders and pallu are elaborately decorated with intricate designs like temples. There is a Maharashtrian influence in the sarees since weavers are believed to have traveled and camped with Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj there. An alluring contrast in sarees is created with zari designs. They are durable, low maintenance and affordable saris.
- GARAD SILK: This a unique style of silk sarees distinguished with white saree and a red border. Garad silk sarees are popularly worn by women in Bengal on festive occasions. The saree has an intricate design with paisley motifs. The silk fabric used in the making of a Garad saree is not dyed which maintains the purity of the saree. Murshidabad in West Bengal is the main center of weaving Garad saris. Silk yarns are closely woven together which creates a fine and perfect texture of the saree.
- ANGORA SILK: Angora silk yarns come from Angora rabbit and are made from world’s softest kind of thread. The fabric is utterly soft and gentle which makes it so loveable! The origin of the Angora silk yarns is known to be Turkey. It’s rareness and plush feel makes it most sought after silk by wealthy people in Europe. The fashion police call it “royalty of wool”. It is produced in Europe, U.S, Chile and China and is harvested around the year. Angora silk wool is popularly used in scarves and stoles.
- KOSA SILK: This variety of Tussar silk comes from Chattisgarh and is obtained from a silkworm called Antheraea mylitta. The fabric is sturdy in nature and known for its purity and soft feel. Though it is known widely for its dull golden brown color, today the fabric is available in a wide variety of colors like orange, cream, fawn, dark honey and many more. The Kosa silk is dyed with natural colors or dyes from the red pollen of Rora flower, palaas flower or fire flower, deep red from lac and other variations of colors to change its natural golden brown color. Kosa silk sarees is one of the popular types of products made from the fabric.
COTTON SILK: The name itself suggests that the fabric is a blend of cotton and silk fibers. Cotton silk is widely used in the making of suits, saree and other Indian ethnic outfits which make them more versatile and sought after than the pure silk itself. It is even used in home furnishing and upholstery. There are many varieties of cotton silk which depends upon the silk threads and types of cotton used in its making.
- SOURNACHURI SILK: This silk variety of West Bengal is known as the sister of beautiful Baluchari silk sarees. The Sournachuri silk saris are distinguished by the gold thread used in its weaving and the gorgeous rich shine. The sarees have an exquisite design with intricate designs and figurines. They are woven in vibrant colors and also in classic colors like red with gold and off-white.
- BALUCHARI SILK: As already mentioned, Baluchari silk saris are related to Swarnachuri silk saris but they have only silk threads in the weaving. Baluchari silk sarees have characteristic mythological events depicted on the pallu of the saree. The most common type Baluchari fabric is woven with one to two threads to create the entire design or pattern. The fabric is a sign of wealth and aristocracy and mostly worn by the wives of Zamindaar or upper-class families.
MAHESHWARI SILK: Maheshwari silk fabric is from Maheshwar region in Madhya Pradesh. The fabric is light and Maheshwari silk saris have beautiful zari brocade with floral design, stripes and check pattern. The sarees are made in pure silk or silk blend.
KORA SILK: The fabric of Kora silk comes from Banaras or Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. It has a stunning shimmering appeal with intervening weaving patterns because of the natural fiber used. Kora silk sarees are known for their sheer and smooth feel. The sarees are durable and strong, no matter they are fine or coarse.
ORGANZA SILK: Organza is a very sheer, light and thin fabric. It has a plain weave and is traditionally made of silk. Silk organza fabric is made in China along Yangtze river. A coarse variety of silk organza is woven in Bangalore, India. The fabric used in bridal wear, evening gowns and in India Organza silk saris are made from it.
TISSUE SILK: Tissue silk is a very light and sheer fabric like Organza and is woven in India. The fabric has open weave with metallic thread woven in one direction and colored silk threads woven in the other direction which gives a shot effect to the fabric. It is a crinkled fabric and has a beautiful metallic luster. Tissue silk sarees are often woven from the fabric to create really delicate and feminine style of saree.
- JAMAWAR SILK: Jamawar silk is usually used in the weaving of shawls for winter. The fabric is a blend of cotton and wool and the finest quality of Jamawar is made with Pashmina. Jamawar silk sarees are hand woven and the brocade area is woven with silk threads. The predominant design in Jamawar sarees is a kairy motif. The sarees are expensive as they are handmade though inexpensive varieties like machine-made Jamawar are also made in Punjab and Kashmir.
HOW TO MAINTAIN SILK SARIS?
While you invest in your beautiful silk saree, it is important to maintain and take care and preserve it for years without losing its beauty. The maintenance and upkeep of every silk saree is different depending on the variety. But these are few general upkeep points which can help keep your Pure Elegance sarees beautiful for ages!
- The suggested way to keep your silk sarees flawless is dry-cleaning which is the best and safest option. For fabrics like raw silk, dupion, crepe silk and jacquard hand-washing is an inexpensive option using cold water. Do not use hot water by any means.
- Use mild detergents only and a drop of clothes conditioner while washing. It can help maintain the shine of the saree.
- For embroidered silk sarees, it is better to get dry cleaned since chances of tangling and loosening the threads while hand washing is high.
- If your saree gets stained with gravies or tea, then dry cleaning is the best option. Otherwise, use petrol and brush softly to clean the stained area with it.
- If the saree gets stained by oil or ghee then talcum powder can help to get rid of the stain. Just put on the stain and it will soak up all the oiliness.
- For expensive silk sarees like Kanjeevaram, Banarasi, Pochampally silk sarees, it is advised to get them dry cleaned only.
- Delicate sarees like Tissue Organza silk sarees should not be washed with hands as the chances of tearing them are high. Keep changing the saree folds from time to time to prevent any tearing in the saree.
- Protect your silk sarees from direct sunlight while drying out. It can take the shine and the color can fade.
- Machine wash is not a good idea to clean a silk saree.
- Get your stained silk sarees dry-cleaned as soon as possible to reduce the chances of deepening the stains and damage.
- Always iron your silk sarees on the setting as mentioned on the iron for silk. Do not use high heat. Steam ironing is best for silk saris.
- Avoid spraying perfumes directly on the saree; this can stain your saree.
- Do not use a brush on your silk sarees, it may take out the threads of the beautiful weaving on your saree.
HOW TO STORE SILK SAREES?
- Silk sarees should be stored wrapped in a muslin cloth or a cotton cloth separately.
- Hanging silk sarees on plastic hangars is a good option to keep them wrinkle free. But don’t hang them on metal hangers.
- To avoid discoloration, keep your Pure Elegance sarees in the dark corners of your wardrobe and away from light and moisture. If there is zari work on the saree, then it is best to fold saree inwards to protect from light.
- When you store your silk sarees chances of an attack from insects and bugs are high. So add naphthalene balls or even neem leaves can help to keep them away.
HOW TO WEAR SILK SAREES THE BOLLYWOOD WAY?
If you’re here to buy silk sarees online in the USA, you’ve come to the right place! On board with us at Pure Elegance is a huge collection that’s every bit awe-inspiring, stunning and exquisite which will make you shine with aplomb at every occasion. We bring you some style tips to keep your look up to the mark on various affairs!
Silk sarees for festivals: For pujas and festive days, a plain yellow silk saree is a fantastic choice. Drape your saree in Nivi style to keep it easy and fuss free while doing various activities during the occasion. Pair it up with a simple gold necklace and a contrasting but equally bright blouse for a look that’s simple, yet bold and beautiful.
Silk saree for parties: A striking royal blue matka silk saree is an ideal choice for parties and get-togethers. Team it with a subtle gold embellished blouse if you’re looking up the flair or a matching blue blouse if you want to go bold without the bling. If you want to flaunt your curves then drape your saree in Mermaid style to make a jaw-dropping statement. Look up to Sonam Kapoor who knows how to keep it classy and chic in a saree at every event.
Silk sarees for weddings: If you want to bring royal panache to your wedding style, then take inspiration from Bollywood Diva Rekha! Pick a beautiful gold Kanchipuram silk saree and drape in an open pallu style to flaunt the beautiful pallu design. Pair with utterly traditional gold jewelry and round off your look with a low bun and a gajra, you are sure to make a lot of heads turn with your style.
A floral red matka silk saree is one that’s always a faultless pick for weddings and ethnic festive occasions when want to keep it minimal yet elegant.
WHERE TO BUY SILK SAREES ONLINE IN USA?
There’s an alluring charm in Indian fashion. The spectacular color palettes, the intricate embroideries, the rich fabrics – it all spells magic. Pure Elegance is here to bring to you that magic! If you are looking to buy silk sarees online in the USA, you’ve come to the right place. We house a ravishing range of sarees, suits and designer blouses from India that are sure to have you falling in love.
When you shop for silk sarees in USA at Pure Elegance, get ready to be spoilt with choices. Flaunt the very best of intricate Indian fashion with embroidered silk sarees and go with printed tussar silk sarees when you’re in the mood for a striking, yet light look. For the times when you want to tread the classic route, a woven silk saree is just the perfect pick.
Silk sarees are incredibly loved and one of the reasons behind it is the availability of plenty of options. Maheshwari silk sarees have an air of effortless style that is great if you’re looking to keep things easy and breezy. Banarasi silk sarees have regal vibes that are sure to make you feel like a queen. When the days you want to channel your inner ethnic style queen but want to keep it simple, a pashmina silk saree is just what you should be picking out. Kanjivaram silk sarees ooze elegance and grace in every weave while tussar silk sarees have an incredibly chic, rustic ethnic feel to them.
Plain silk sarees are ethnic wear essentials and a must-have in every Indian women’s wardrobe. Easy to style and super versatile, one just cannot err in them. While silk saris are quintessentially ethnic, geometric patterns, stripes and chevron designs can give them a contemporary touch. Opt for a floral silk saree for times you want to keep it Indian chic with a dash of modern and go with ikkat silk sarees or sarees with traditional butas on them if you want to go for a hundred percent ethnic Indian look.
Shopping for silk sarees online in USA has never been this easy. With Pure Elegance, you can now browse through a wide variety of silk sarees from Indiain a number of colours, styles and designs, all while sitting in the comfort of your house. We not only ensure top notch quality and latest designs but also work towards giving you an easy experience when shopping for sarees in silk online. From buying to shipping, we strive to deliver your sari to you in a smooth and timely manner.
Wait? Looking to get up close and personal with our Pure Elegance saree collection? Then do drop by our store in Edison, New Jersey.