Bandhani has its roots in the Kutch region of Gujarat, and is believed to have been first made 400 years ago in the region around present-day Jamnagar. The tie and dye technique in Kutch is a family tradition kept alive by the Muslim khatri community here, and the colours used are in keeping with time-tested traditions and they signify various stages in a person’s life or occasions that are celebrated with gusto. Thus, dark solid colours signify a woman or family in mourning, while yellow symbolize a new mother, and red for a young girl in the bloom of youth.
The art of bandhani has cast its shadow on Rajsthan aswell where it has gained popularity over time, but the designs used in Rajasthan differ from the ones in Gujarat. There are, certain prints that are peculiar to Rajasthan, such as the leheriya or wave pattern used for the bandhani here, which isn’t found anywhere else. The finest Bandhanis continue to be made in Rajasthan and Gujarat, although some crude forms of this tie-and dye are seen in Sind ( Pakistan) and Uttar Pradesh too.
Bandhani or Bandhej is a traditional resist dyeing method where the cloth is tied to make designs using tiny dots, and dyes are filled in starting from the light colours to the dark. There are various designs made with the use of a few major colours like red, black,blue, maroon, yellow. Depending on the patterns and the materials used , the end product may be a chandrakhani, gharchola, paneter, or khombi.
The Chandrakhani is worn by Khatri brides, and is characterized by round circular patterns that stand for the moon and is set against a blue-black background. The gharchola is a bandhani lined with zari checks , and is a traditional wedding saree worn by brides in the Lohana community.
In Rajasthan, the leheriya pattern is made of dots arranged in a wave pattern signifying water, and is worn during the monsoon, especially during the Teej festival. There are other patterns too, prevalent in Rajasthan, such as Mothra, Ekdalia and Shikari, most of which depict animals and birds using dots.
Originally Bandhani was used on turbans, odhnis , sarees and skirts in Gujarat and Rajasthan using fabrics like fine cotton mulmul and fine silk since these are most suitable for the resist dyeing technique used. The Rebari women, incidentally, wore bandhani on coarse woollen cloth as odhnis. Today, with modern methods and computerized techniques, the process is no longer as time-consuming and labour-intensive as it was in the past. Bandhani can also be easily worked on a variety of fabrics today, such as georgette, chiffon. viscose and synthetic blends.
The colours used have also moved from the traditional ones to a myriad lighter hues. However, the designs of Jamnagar, Jaipur and Sikar continue to be cherished for their intricacy and fine execution, as are traditional shades of red , maroon and the like. The qualities of modern drapes have only added to the beauty of Bandhej products today.
Type of Fabric used in Bandhani Saree :
Here are some modern takes on traditional bandhej on sarees that stand out in their distinctive uniqueness. The most popular varieties are listed here to help you take your pick:
- Chiffon Bandhani Saree: The most appreciated element in a Chiffon Bandhani Saree is its sensuous drape and smooth, flowy texture. Pair your saree with some simple pair of coloured earrings and matching bangles to make the saree stand out.
- Crepe Bandhani Saree: A crepe bandhani has a silky, lustrous look which looks great when teamed with an elegant neckline or a halter blouse to match. Crepe Bandhanis are available in the widest range of colours to choose from for any and every occasion, and are most suited for the modern Indian woman.
- Viscose Bandhani Saree: Choose Viscose Bandhani Sarees if you are looking for an impressive shade in a specific colour. There is a wide range of shaded colours available in this segment.
- Georgette Bandhani Saree: This is the most popular variety in the Bandhani range, as Georgette perfectly complements a wide range of laces and embellishments , and is the designers choice to come up with the best creations in the market.
Related : Chiffon Sarees – Rediscover your Style
As mentioned earlier, Bandhani was traditionally done using Red, Maroon, Green, Blue or yellow in keeping with the seasons and occasions during which they are worn. However, several new shades are available today in eye-catching colour combinations that can take your breath away.
Related : Embroidery Sarees
From their humble beginnings in rural India, bandhani fabrics have adapted themselves to being the preferred fabric for bridal wear, cocktail parties, and family get- together. Bandhani Sarees are a never- fading fashion statement. In addition to the available range of colours, newer shades are launched by designers on the occasion of festivals like Diwali, Navratri, and Ganesh otsav every year.
Bandhani sarees are available in the widest possible range, with prices starting from as low as INR 799 for a crepe Bandhani saree, going upto INR 1,00,000 for a highly detailed and embellished piece. In comparison, Viscose Bandhani Sarees start from INR 1000 onwards, while the extremely popular georgette Bandhanis are priced at INR 500 for something in the casual wear range. The more detailed and elegant pieces in the georgette bandhani however, embellished with fancy lace or stones are priced at INR 2000 upwards.
Best Bandhani Sarees Collection :