The word “sari” means “strip of cloth” in Sanskrit and the garment was first made of cotton and later, silk, ikat, embroidery and tie-dye textiles grew popular. Over time, the fabric was also embellished with expensive stones, gold threads for the upper echelons of society.
With industralisation in India in the mid-nineteenth century, dyeing and printing techniques were introduced and the variety of saris grew. Today, the sari is a single strip of unstitched drape that can vary in length – from 4.5 metres to 9 metres long and 600 centimetres to 1.2 metres in width – and it can be made of a variety of fabrics, from natural materials such as cotton and silk to synthetic fabrics such as polyester and nylon.
While cotton saris are usually worn for everyday use and comfort, silk saris that are bright in colour are favoured at joyous occasions such as weddings. The variety of colours and patterns of saris available today is extensive with certain styles reflecting the tradition and culture of different regions of India.
Source: Channel News Asia