“Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak” – A quote by Racheal Zoe, one of the well-known Fashion Designers, holds absolutely true for Chanderi fabric. Known for its glossy transparency and sheer texture, Chanderi is a century-old weaving technique that produces three kinds of fabric – Chanderi silk cotton, pure silk, and Chanderi Cotton.
The uniqueness of Chanderi fabric lies in its beautiful motifs embellished on the fabric. Traditionally, the motifs were inspired mostly by flowers, coins, fruits, peacocks, and heavenly bodies but now we can also find motifs in geometric abstract forms.
These motifs are primarily handwoven on Chanderi fabric with hand-loom by the use of needles. Various needles are used to weave different motifs on one fabric. The motifs of grace stay in the color of the threads used which can be gold, silver, or Copper.
One thing which makes Chanderi the cynosure to our eyes is the vibrant hues of this fabric. The availability of Chanderi in glorious pastel shades adds a sense of freshness and liveliness to the outfit. And this makes it perfect for summer wear.
History and Origin of Chanderi fabric
Coming from the small town of Chanderi, Madhya Pradesh, Chanderi fabric has derived its name from this town itself.
According to the known history, Chanderi’s woven tales can be traced back to the 7th Century B.C. when it was woven with handspun cotton for producing turbans for Maratha rulers. It was also a favorite fabric among ancient kings and Maharanis and Chanderi sarees were considered a symbol of royalty. But there are also traces that make us believe that it was first founded by Lord Krishna’s Cousin, Shishupal in the Vedic era.
Around the beginning of the 19th century, weavers switched from hand-spun Cotton to mill-made Cotton because of the less availability of hand-spun Cotton. In 1910, the royal family of Scindia brought Chanderi sarees under their patronage and this is when gold motifs were first embellished on the cotton muslin saree. And the addition of these gold motifs made Chanderi sarees popular among all the royal queens. And this further led to the introduction of Japanese silk which had high margins and that is how Chanderi silk was discovered.
Later in 1970, another type of Chanderi fabric was discovered that was a blend of Cotton and Silk which is actually the most readily available Chanderi available today.
There are Three Things That Fascinate Us Most About The Chanderi Fabric:
Royal Zari Border: Chanderi sarees are embellished with a gold zari border which makes them look even more enticing. And the motifs definitely add more elegance to these Chanderi sarees. It is the evergreen beauty of Zari borders that made these saris a favorite among royalties.
Glossy texture: The lustrous Shine and the transparency of this fabric will not let you stop drooling over this fabric . Be it Chanderi cotton or Chanderi Silk fabric, it will still stand out among all the fabrics because of its sparkling texture.
A Cultural touch: The weaving of Chanderi fabric has been practiced for generations which takes us closer to our traditional heritage.
The motif designs embellished on Chanderi fabrics are so intricate and so unique from each other that every Design tends to tell its own story. And that is why so many fashion designers have been playing with Chanderi.
Chanderi Style diaries
Chanderi has always been popular for designing enticing saris but now it is also used for different clothing purposes and also home decor items like Cushions and Curtains. Let’s take a look at some of the Chanderi dresses created by famous designers:
Sanjay Garg’s Collection “Raw Mango” displayed at Lakme fashion week Summer/Resort 2016 showcased a beautiful blend of Chanderi Silk fabric and nude color palette combined with brighter hues like mustard and green.
It was a total blend of contemporary outfits with a traditional touch. The collection included high waist pants and sarees.
The showstopper of this show was Aditi Rao Hyadri, wearing a beautiful lehenga set by Raw Mango.
Samant Chauhan showcased a timeless collection inspired by the Aryan era. The collection manifests a more modern interpretation of royalty from the bygone era.
Asymmetric silhouettes with cinched waist and a textured movement elaborated the SS17 collection of Samant Chauhan.
The outfit itself spelled femininity with a bit of command and playfulness.
The vintage collection of white canvas painted on Chanderi cotton fabric with floral accents set the summer mood right.
The beauty of Chanderi does not stop here. The charm of this magical fabric is inspiring Interior and fashion designers all over the world to play with it infinitely to create more and more designs. We would love to see the magic of Chanderi fabric in the coming years.