Costumes of Maharashtra - Informative & researched article on Costumes of Maharashtra
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Costumes of Maharashtra
Costumes of Maharashtra replicate the identity of a typical Maharashtrian culture. It truly reflects the tradition and culture of Maharashtra.
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 Costumes of MaharashtraCostumes of Maharashtra comprise a nine yard sari as the traditional costume for the women, and dhoti and shirt as the traditional costume of the men folk. Maharashtra, one of the largest and most populous states of India, demonstrates an array of costumes, suiting the purpose of any occasion, as well as weather conditions.

Male costume of Maharashtra
The men of Maharashtra uphold Dhoti as their cultural heritage. It may be worn along with a shirt or kurta, and Dhoti is often substituted with trousers. They also wear 'bandi' over the shirt and turban called 'pheta' and 'pagadi'. The festive occasions of the Maharashtrians allow themselves to indulge in the festive mood and during this time most of the men wear Churidar, Pyjama, Ackan or Survar.

Female costume of Maharashtra
The traditional costume of women in Maharashtra is a nine-yard long sari, called Nauvari. This sari bears a resemblance to male trousers. This specific style of draping does not require a petticoat or a slip beneath it. The Nauvari saris have a historical background. During the Maratha rule, women were entrusted with the grave responsibility of helping their male partners, at emergency period of wars. To facilitate easy movement, the Maharashtrian women then introduced the Nauvari Sari.

The fabric of Nauvari Saree is usually cotton, and for special occasions, silk tops the priority list. Paithani sareeshappen to be the treasured creation of Maharashtra's textile-industry. The Paithani saree, invested with an 18 inch to 25 inch pallu, owes its origin to adept textile-designing. The Brahmin ladies of Maharashtra wear sarees in a particular pattern where the pleats are located at or near the back and these are tucked in waist and the decked part of the saree is left open on the shoulder part. They use choli with the sarees and often polkas and blouses.

Silk is woven to constitute the body of the royal Paithani silks. And into this rich silk texture, pure Jari-made of gold and silver threads, are interwoven, to give the Saree the ornamented get-up. The bright Paithani sarees are very popular as the bridal costume. The Paithani sarees are thus essentially linked to the culture and society of Maharashtra. The sarees have received their name after the place of its origin, Paithan. The other weaving-sites of this exclusive item are Yeola, Pune, Nasik and Malegaon in Maharashtra. The Maharashtrian women prefer to deck themselves in beautiful jewelleries. Most of the designs of the jewelleries are of Peshwa and Maratha style. Among the most favoured jewelleries are the haar, nath or nose ring decorated with pearl or vibrant coloured stones. Some of the necklaces they wear include bangdya, Kolhapuri Saaj, tode and patlya

Costume in Urban Maharashtra
In the urban areas of Maharashtra, and especially in its cosmopolitan capital, Mumbai, costumes display themselves in their variety best. Women put in Kurta-Pajamas, Salwar-kameez-Dupatta, skirt-blouse, and jeans-trousers, exotic Sarees and so on. The urban Mumbai men on the other hand, flaunt themselves with the halo of grooming. They shift from wearing jeans, trousers, branded shirts, baggy trousers, T-shirts, all possible types of casual wears. On occasions, sherwanis, kurta-pajamas, ornate Dhotis, and other kinds of resplendent men's attire, rank among their favourites. Indeed, Mumbai the glam-epicentre of India, and the abode of Bollywood, is the trendsetter for costumes, for the whole of India. Fashion experiences its high, in the posh cities of Maharashtra, with fashion-designing institutes and business units, establishing their sway.

The state of Maharashtra, hence has achieved a splendid synthesis of the old and the new patterns in costume. Time and the effect of globalisation have brought a drastic change in the costumes of each and every state and Maharashtra as well. Though the modernisation has a great impact in the society, the tradition has not faded its glitter, thus the traditional dresses have not lost the glory of their past. It has also focused on the traditional and regional textile-accomplishments like Paithani as the 'in-thing' now.

(Last Updated on : 01/07/2011)
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