The Humble and Stylish – Narayanpet

Fabric from Telangana with a strong Maharashtrian influence

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The monsoons have hit Mumbai real hard. It comes as relief, because the summer heat had got onto us real bad. Not to forget the drought affected areas of Maharashtra. So let’s welcome the monsoons 🙂

Everything around the city looks green and fresh. The smell of wet land, sets the perfect background for a nostalgic evening. Monsoons, have somehow always made me nostalgic. Maybe because it is gloomy and we miss the sun. Gloomy days, takes me back to few childhood memories. Making paper boats and floating them on puddles, splashing on those same puddles, playing in the rains, having kanda bhajji and khichdi. Memories are so beautiful and strong, that usually one or two tear drops will roll down your cheeks 🙂

I thought of adding some colour to the monsoons. Cannot see the sun, but maybe some colour will make us shine!

My mother always loved South Indian saris. For some reason she was obsessed about the beautiful golden borders. I kept wondering what is so great about them, until i wore a Narayanpet for this shoot. This is a classic. Soft cotton handloom, embossed with golden and geometric print borders. A weave that is so dated, yet so modern.

My collaboration with KaiMagga by Deepa Shetty helped me explore this side of South Cotton saris. Such a unique blend of modern and ethnic style. We will take you through 3 different saris. Each has a uniqueness which is so commendable.

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Green and Red classic:

This sari itself tells a story. My mother still owns a Kanjivaram in this colour. So I have always associated South Indian saris with this green. It is funny, but true. The best part about this sari is the fabric and combination. So ethnic and divine. Red plays the perfect partner to this rich green. Also, it is light and so very wearable.

Look book: The sari is paired with a contrasting red and black Kalamkari blouse. Since the saris are plain in nature, the blouse needs to have some depth.

The look is traditional, since I did not want to mess the feel of this sari. Like I said, there is something nostalgic about this colour. However, I have taken the liberty of creating a short pallu. Usually we prefer our pallus to be long. But I wanted to experiment with this sari and did not look bad. Short pallus are manageable, comfortable and stylish. Try it out.

Usually, South is associated with gold. I wanted to break that. Therefore, teamed the entire look with subtle silver jewellery.

Narayanpet Info: It is believed that Chatrapati Shivaji traveled to the Narayanpet region and happened to camp their for a while. When he continued on his journey, a few weavers stayed behind.These were the weavers who started producing the Silk sarees with a distinct style of design which came to be known as Narayanpet Silk sarees.

What you can do? If you do not want a blouse which is different from the sari, play safe and use a red brocade blouse instead. You can make pleats on the pallu for a neat look to work. However, the pallus are the star of this weave, so you can show it off.

 

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Golden Glow:

How beautiful does this brick colour sari look with an embossed golden zari border? This sure is an absolute classic which stands tall amongst all bright colours. The best thing about Narayanpet saris are, they are simple yet powerful. You can wear this for a puja or a day in office. It is meant for both extremes.

Look book: Even this sari is paired with a green and lemon Kalmkari blouse. I shot this in a madir, therefore kept a look that is best suited for an occasion. The simple and stylish sari has been accessorized with kundan jhumkas and bangles.

There is so much of glow in this sari, that the use of kundan was a must. It is a classic look where two hairstyles have been used – one being a  simple bun the other being the flowy open hair look.

Narayanpet Info: The saris have a strong  Maharashtrian influence. It is very popular in Maharashtra and is worn during religious and other auspicious occassions. Even in Andhra Pradesh, Narayanpet Silk sarees are sought after along with the Pochampalli Ikat sarees from the east Godavari region.

What you can do? You can use a red blouse against this colour. It will be a bold yet creative look. If you want to keep it subtle, a green silk or golden brocade blouse with sheer neckline will look amazing. The sari can also be worn with keeping the pallu in front. The way Gujaratis wear their beautiful saris.

 

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Pretty in Pink:

Doing a summer pop in monsoon with my favourite colour – pink! Yes, I totally love pink. And I think, it is one such colour that can be worn in any season for any occasion. It is not a girly colour. NO. Pink is pretty and powerful. When  KaiMagga by Deepa Shetty sent me this sari, I instantly fell in love with it. The beautiful colour has a touch of green and gold. The borders have golden zari and the pallu is orange and green.

Look book: Now this beautiful sari deserved some styling. I broke the conventional look, since it is such a pop colour. The pallu of the sari is used as a dupatta and a scarf. It makes this authentic weave stand out as modern and contemporary.

The blouse is a show stopper. Floral beauty which has soft colours like pink and purple.Very contrasting, yet stands out. The jewellery is minimal. Simple kundan earing and brass and silver hand cuff. This look was created for the power women.

Narayanpet Info: Vegetable dyes are used to create Narayanpet saris. In a unique process, eight sarees are made at one go on a loom. After the degumming, dyeing and drying process, the actual weaving starts. In the case of Cotton sarees, it takes one day to complete a saree, whereas a Silk saree takes 4-5 days to be completed.

What you can do? Wear it as a traditional sari. If you are not the one who is keen to experiment, keep the look simple. If you want to take a bolder step, wear a halter neck crop top with this sari in the same style as I have draped it. It will have a lot to say.

 

Hope you have liked the style, fabric and the weave in itself. Narayanpet saris are on of its kind. Own them before they lose out to growing modernity.

Wardrobe courtesy – KaiMagga by Deepa Shetty

Photographs by – Anshul Mehta