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Mangalagiri Handlooms Are Exclusive, Traditional Sarees With Universal Appeal
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Mangalagiri Handlooms Are Exclusive Traditional Sarees With Universal Appeal
Mangalagiri Handloom Sarees are crisp-finish fabrics of cotton, cotton-silk or mercerized cotton, made in Mangalagiri. Known for their heavy gold thread or Zari borders, Nizam designs and striking colour combinations, they have created a niche for themselves as fabrics of unique appeal.
Mangalagiri is on the National Highway conecting Kolkata and Chennai, Mangalagiri is very close to Guntur and Vijayawada and is a part of the Vijayawada urban agglomeration.
Heavy gold thread or zari borders, traditional Nizam designs, and simple mono-striped or multi-colour striped pallus adorn the fabric. Various motifs like leaf, mango, parrot, gold coin, add to the appeal of the cotton saree. Current popular trends have printing work and embroidery designs on the mangalagiri cotton sari.
Count is an indication of the fineness of a saree, based on the threads per square inch in warp and weft. Counts range from 40(coarse) to 120 (super fine), with the normal count of 80 – 80 being used for soft woven fabric. Prices begin at Rs 60 to Rs 70 a metre, and could go beyond Rs.1000, based on the intricacies involved in its making
Derived from its original name Totadri, Mangalagiri is from Mangala (good fortune) and Giri (hill). There are three temples of Narayan Swamy in Mangalagiri and popular traditional belief has it that those climbing the hill to offer prayers would definitely buy a saree before leaving Mangalagiri.
There are some features unique to a Mangalgiri Saree. The soft and comfortable all-season fabric generally does not have designs on the body. It also is known for not having gaps in its weave. There is a missing thread variety of saree not commonly found.
A traditional occupation involving whole families in the making, it is knowledge gained from experience and experiment, shared and passed down from generation to generation. Mangalagiri weavers are devoted to their craft. They also have a clear idea about market trends. Organised into co-operatives, they follow the market to incorporate current demands in their weaves.
The Geographical Indication (GI) Status accorded to the Mangalagiri Handlooms this year has ushered in much sought relief from weaver woes.
High price of raw materials, coupled with spurious goods and nearby local industries affixing the Mangalagiri Handlooms label to their goods without the traditional quality in their fabrics, was bad enough. Market response was also poor with the genuine fabrics seeming costlier. This led to poor production and exodus of skilled workers from the traditional handloom industry.
The GI certification is granted if the product possesses distinctive qualities, only when the produce is found to be made according to traditional methods, or enjoys a certain reputation due to its geographical origin. Mangalagiri handlooms and fabrics have a registered logo for the product. With the grant of GI, it would further help boost the market for these sarees.
Based on the current situation being maintained for the next three to four years at least, it is estimated that the current turnover could at least be doubled in the next couple of years.
Unnati Silks, devoted to ethnic sarees and salwar kameez materials, has trendy designs, attractive patterns, in pleasing colours and combinations in its wide collection of Mangalagiri Handloom Sarees at very reasonable prices. Dispatch within 24 hours of order, with free delivery & COD for retail, and world-wide express shipping.
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