Known the world over as a poem hand woven in silk and gold, Paithani Sarees are for those with discerning and refined taste. The art of weaving Paithani flourished in 200 B.C., during Satvahana era. Since then Paithani is coveted in India as a precious heirloom passing on from generation to generation. Exquisite silk from Paithani was exported to many countries and was traded in return for gold and precious stones. Shear dedication and the faith of the weavers have kept alive Paithani silk work for more than 2000 years. Real Paithani is hand woven pure silk and gold/silver. Intricate designs on pallu and border is a specialty of Paithani Sarees. Motifs on pallu are generally peacock, lotus, mango and other designs taken form Ajanta Caves. Traditional creative artistry and pain staking workmanship combine to form this unique cloth. Paithani Sarees can take between 2 months to years to manufacture, depending on border and pallu design and costs from Rs.6000 to Rs.500,000. Described in early literature as Maharashtra. "The great fabric, a cloth is being woven since thousands of years from a very ancient and popular city known as Supratishthapuram, a silken cloth brocaded with golden threads, is what we call today the Paithani. The city is today known as paithan, giving fabric its modern name. The fabric woven in traditional ways even after many centuries is renowned as "the great fabric” not only for Maharashtra but also from India. Even in today's advanced world the methods of weaving Paithani have not changed at all, the reason why it’s not lessened by a whisker. Woven with extremely dedicate silk threaded sticks, the Paithani is one fabric, which cannot be matched by any other cloth today that is why it is enchanting legacy from Maharashtra and fabric of beautifully women. In the gifted city the silken cloths are being woven over last mancentories. There are also places in India having old traditional of weaving silk but Paithani has carved and retained a destinative niche since ancient times. A germentfor ladies and the Pitambara, the yellow cloth are the two types in which the Paithani is made today. Like its technique, the design patterns used on the Paithani are
also special. Moreover, the silk that is used in weaving it is also very delicate. Only the nature source such as various leaves, flowers, tree-skin, soils, lamps soot, etc. are used to make these brilliant and attractive special colors. The names of Paithani are based on their colors. The harmony between the design of the borders and the overall color is also important, thus what color should go with what designs is predetermined and depending on these combinations the Paithani. References to this pattern can also be found in folksongs and literature. Another fascinating attribute of Paithani is the embroiders on its borders. Some of the ancient designs of embroidery on the borders the inner design made up of small orbs is similarly important from five hundred to nine hundred such orbs can be found in one design. The Paithani is also considered holy in Indian tradition because of use silk, which has a special importance in Indian marriages. Paithani is the glory of Maharashtra. Paithani Saris not only give an elegant look but also adds royalty and thus most of the brides to be like to wear these heavily embellished paithani sarees on that auspicious day. Paithani Saris teamed up with the appropriate accessories, adds enormous grace and beauty. Motifs and Colors Since the Patithan region is quite close to the Ajanta caves, one can find the influence of the Buddhist paintings in the motifs used on the Paithani sarees. For the body of the sari, some very common motifs are Kamal or lotus flower, Hans, Ashraffi, Asawalli (flowering vines), Bangadi Mor (peacock), Tota-Maina (male & female parrot), Humarparinda (peasant bird), Amar Vell and Narali. One can also see motifs like Circles, Stars, Kuyri, Kalas Pakhhli, Chandrakor, Leaves Cluster, etc. For the pallu, the common motifs are Muniya (a kind of parrot), Panja (geometrical flower-like motif), Barwa (12 strands of a ladder), Laher, Muthada (geometrical design), Asawali (flower pot) and Mor. The colors usually used for making a Pathani saree are yellow, red, lavender, purple, sky blue, magenta, peach pink, purple, pearl pink, peacock blue/green, yellowish green, violet red, black and white, black and red, red and green, etc. Types of Paithani Saris There are different types of Paithani saris, classified on the basis of three criteria - motif, weaving and color. Classification by Motif * Bangadi Mor (Peacock in a bangle or in a bangle shape, woven in pallu) * Munia brocade (Parrots woven on the pallu as well as in border) * Lotus brocade (Lotus motifs used in pallu and maybe border) Classification by Weaving * Kadiyal border sari (Warp and weft of the border are of the same color, body has different colors for warp and weft) * Kad/Ekdhoti (Single shuttle used for weaving of weft and colors of warp yarn different from that of weft yarn) Classification by Color * Kalichandrakala (Black sari with red border) * Raghu (Parrot green sari) * Shirodak (Pure white sari) According to the changing styles and trends designers design these with new innovative styles .They used unique motifs like buttis, floral designs and many other that make paithani sari to look exquisite. Paithani fabric is woven entirely on handlooms; the special dhoop-chaav (light and shade) effect is achieved by bringing two different colored silk threads together. The weaving of the royal fabric is known as tabby weaving. Today its weaving method has been changed according to the changing technology. Artisans in Paithan have been practicing the art of weaving the paithani sari for centuries, and this tradition has been passed on from one generation to another now days, the tradition of Paithani saris are dying that’s why modern day weavers are trying to develop newer and innovative motifs in the designing of these traditional saris. Today Paithani sari with motifs is in vogue: stars, circles, peacocks, flowers and paisleys etc. The price of a Paithani sari starts from Rs. 4,000/- and can move up to Rs. 1, 50,000/-. “The paithani sari is an entirely hand-woven item. Human skills may have been replaced by machines. However, no machine-made fabric can compare with the hand-made beauty of the paithani sari by the master craftsmen of Maharashtra.