Cotton Fabrics is the most used textile fibre in the world and is also said to be the ‘Pearl of Indian Weaving’. The weightlessness of these fabrics has been sung by many poets, comparing them to the moonlight on the tulip or a dewdrop on the rose. Indians have known weaving of material from cotton since 5000 years. The earliest evidence of using cotton is from India and the date assigned to this fabric is 3000 B.C. Cotton is woven universally all over India and one can take note of only a few places for their distinctive weave. The conventional cotton weaving revolves around ‘Khadi’ which is woven by hand using hand spun yarn.
In India, 23 different varieties of cotton are found. Cotton is used in producing a wide range of items like: summer wear, saree, bedsheets, napkins, shirts, tablemats etc. Cotton fabric is very popular in India, because of the soft twist imparted by the hand, maintains the hairiness of the yarn to an extent, which gives maximum comfort. General characteristics of cotton include breathability, high absorption, comfort and durability. Indian states have its own weaving tradition. Cotton fabrics are hygienic, strong, and resistant to wear, washing, and the effect of light, but they do not have required elasticity, that is, they stretch and become wrinkled.
Beautiful sarees are produced from cotton. The elegant varieties of sarees from Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh are popular for their intricate designs.
Maheswari Sarees: Maheshwar on the banks of the River Narmada weaves fine cotton sarees with tiny checks, which combine complimentary colours together. Very soft colours are used for the dyeing.
Jamdani Sarees: The cotton sarees of West Bengal are called Jamdani and they follow the traditional patterns.
Gharchola Sarees: Gharchola sarees are mainly rooted in Gujarat. These are especially traditional wedding sarees.
Sambalpuri Sarees: Sambalpuri sarees which come in a variety of colours and traditional motifs inspired by nature are the most popular among the people.
Venkatagiri Sarees: The cotton sarees of Andhra Pradesh have a rich variety. The best known in cotton is Gadwal, Wainarpati, Nainder and Venkatagiri.
Paithani Sarees: Paithani sarees are used in special occasions only. These sarees are basically from Andhra Pradesh. The Paithani became very popular during the Maratha period.
Tanda: Toda Tribal embroidery is one of the most famous embroidery forms in India. When the sun is warm, the Toda women sit outside her house embroidering the handsome pudukulis, which protect both men and women from severe cold.
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