Every type of saree has some kind of speciality which attracts the buyer to make it their staple style. Sarees have been a part of Indian tradition for decades and have evolved with modern standards. One such tradition that goes back to the 20th century is the enchantment of Ikat.
Ikat is a type of textile art which is woven on warp threads or printed by the tie-dye method to create shapes like pointed arrows or diamonds and block prints such as paisleys, flowers, leaves, geometric shapes, etc.
The craft of Ikat handlooms originated in Odisha and made its way to the south of India. Now, this craft is prominent in three major regions, Andhra Pradesh/Telangana, Odisha and Gujarat.
Ikat has gradually stepped up the demand chart not only because of the creative, eye-catching patterns but also because the weavers of this cloth hold extensive experience in weaving and dyeing which has even brought them to introduce their independent textile patterns.
Ikat represents empowerment and job creation for most of the rural population in the springing regions of this textile. It is not the seller who benefits from this occupation alone but all the individuals who form a chain in this interdependent ecosystem.
By supporting Ikat, we support more farmers and in turn help all the people who are a part of this ecosystem.
Pochampalli (officially called Bhoodan Pochampilli) is a small village located in the Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district of Telangana. It is world-famous for its weaving of Ikkat Saris and other textiles. It is on the tentative list of UNESCO world heritage sites. The weaving survives in a few villages like Pochampally, Koyalgudam, Choutuppala, Siripuram, Bhuvanagiri, Puttapaka and Gattuppala and a few villages around them mostly in the Nalgonda district.
Initially, the craft of Ikat was confined to cotton but the South Indian States introduced silk as an alternative to creating smoother patterns and cotton-silk to maintain the comfort factor.
The designs in a type called Telia Rumaal are larger and crisper in comparison to the ikat designs that are intricate making it more popular. Pochampally Double Ikats are relatively blurrier with smaller designs. Silk sarees, cotton sarees and silk-cotton Pochampally ikat fabrics are much sought after. They take a lot of time in making, as both warp and weft yarns are tied and dyed.