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About 70 Kms away on the Bangalore highway is the town of Kanchipuram, famous for its silk sreees. About 75% of the local population is in some way connected to the saree weaving industry. The actual number of wearers are about 50,000.

The sarees are hand woven with dyed silk yarn interleaved with silver and gold thread. The gold thread costing about Rs15 per gram. The more the gold work on the saree the heavier it is and higher the cost. A silk saree with a lot of work can cost several thousands. On an average it takes about 10 to 21 days to weave a saree. Each saree being a piece of art made by a dedicated craftsman. The raw silk thread comes from the state of Karnataka while the “Jari” the gold thread comes from Gujarat. Weaveing is a family business, with looms installed in homes and family members taking part. A typical home could have ten or more looms. The craftsmanship is handed down from generation to generation. The weavers belong to co-operative societies who ensure fair prices and market the product.

Kanchipuram sarees are worn for special occasions and in south India for weddings. The designs are with very wide borders and mango, elephant, peacock, diamond, lotus etc.


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