Kristian Bertel | Photography
Archive story
In this archive story we are photographing An Indian woman wearing a 'Sari' in India.
Read the background story of this archive photo by the photographer.
Picturing an Indian woman wearing a 'Sari' in Pushkar, India. In this town, it is said that Brahma once dropped a lotus flower on the Earth, so says the epics and Pushkar floated to the surface. The pond-sized Hindu pilgrimage town is a magical desert-edged place, with one of the world's few Brahma temples.
Picturing an Indian woman wearing a 'Sari' in Pushkar, India. In this town, it is said that Brahma once dropped a lotus flower on the Earth, so says the epics and Pushkar floated to the surface. The pond-sized Hindu pilgrimage town is a magical desert-edged place, with one of the world's few Brahma temples.
Kristian Bertel, Photographer By Kristian Bertel, Photographer
– Updated on March 21, 2024

Sarees of Rajasthan, India

Like the rows of sacred 'Ghats' front mystically magnetic lake in Pushkar, where hundreds of milky-colored temples and weather-touched domes sit beneath a shifting, pale grey sky, the 'Sarees' are a colorful garment dresses every traveler in Rajasthan and many more places in India see. They are of great interest for the photographer as a photographic subject. With its many styles and colors it is a traditional piece of clothing in India.

Are 'Sarees' comfortable?

It is a comfortable attire when you wear it the right way. The key is to know how to drape it to suit your comfort levels. And then, you will love to wear it every day to work. Because there can be no other outfit as graceful and as beautiful as a 'Saree'.

A timeless piece of clothing
Rajasthan is a land of vibrant colors and rich cultural heritage. Be it the magnificent palaces, grand forts or colorful festivals, Rajasthan never fails to mesmerize its visitors with its beauty and charm. One of the most iconic and beloved symbols of Rajasthan is the traditional attire of its women – the 'Saree'. The 'Saree', also known as the 'Sari', is a timeless piece of clothing that has been a part of Indian culture for centuries. It is a long piece of fabric, usually 6-9 yards, that is draped around the body in various styles and worn with a blouse and petticoat. While 'Sarees' are worn all over India, the ones from Rajasthan hold a special place in the hearts of people due to their unique designs and patterns. The traditional 'Sarees' of Rajasthan are a perfect blend of elegance and vibrancy. The colors and motifs used in these 'Sarees' reflect the vibrant culture and traditions of the state.

Some of the most popular 'Saree styles' from Rajasthan are 'Bandhani', 'Kota Doria' and 'Leheriya'. 'Bandhani Sarees' are one of the most recognized and loved sarees from Rajasthan. Also known as 'Bandhej', these sarees are made by tie-dyeing the fabric with vibrant colors. The process of creating a 'Bandhani Saree' is a labourious one and requires immense skill and patience. The final product is a beautiful 'Saree' with intricate patterns and designs that make it a must-have in every Rajasthani woman's wardrobe. 'Kota Doria', also known as 'Kota Dori', is another famous saree style from Rajasthan. It is made from a lightweight fabric called 'Kota', which is a blend of cotton and silk. These 'Sarees' are known for their delicate and transparent texture, making them perfect for summers.

"The traditional 'Kota Doria sarees' come in vibrant colors and are often embellished with intricate 'Zari work', making them perfect for special occasions. 'Leheriya Sarees', with their distinctive wavy patterns, are the epitome of Rajasthani culture. These 'Sarees' are made by tie-dyeing the fabric in a unique way to create a wave-like effect. This style of 'Saree' is worn by women of all ages and is a popular choice for festivals and weddings in Rajasthan"

Craftsmanship and dedication in India
Apart from these well-known styles, there are also other types of 'Sarees' that are unique to different regions of Rajasthan. For instance, the 'Gota Patti Sarees', which are adorned with gold and silver 'Zari work', are popular in Jaipur and nearby areas. The 'Sanganeri Sarees', with their colorful hand-block prints, are a specialty of the town of Sanganer and the traditional sarees of Rajasthan not only represent the state's cultural heritage but also its skilled artisans. The process of making these 'Sarees', from dyeing the fabric to adding intricate designs, is a time-consuming and meticulous art that has been passed down through generations.

These artisans, who have mastered the art of 'Saree-making', are the backbone of this industry and deserve recognition for their craftsmanship and dedication. The popularity and demand for 'Rajasthani sarees' have not only remained within the state but have also spread worldwide and with the rise of e-commerce, it has become easier for people to buy these 'Sarees' from the comfort of their homes. Many designers and brands have also incorporated 'Rajasthani saree' styles in their collections, making them accessible to a broader audience.

Rajasthan famous saree
'Sarees' are an integral part of Rajasthani culture and each style represents a particular region or community of the state. They not only add a touch of tradition and beauty but also contribute to the livelihoods of many skilled artisans. It is no wonder that Rajasthani 'Sarees' have stood the test of time and continue to be a symbol of grace and elegance for women not just in Rajasthan but all over the world.

Traditional clothing in India
The woman you see in this story is wearing a 'Sari' in Jaipur. 'Saris' are woven with one plain end and is the end that is concealed inside the wrap, two long decorative borders running the length of the 'Sari' and a 1 to 3-foot section at the other end which continues and elaborates the length-wise decoration and this end is called the 'Pallu' it is the part thrown over the shoulder in the 'Nivi' style of draping. In past times, 'Saris' were woven of silk or cotton and the rich could afford finely woven, diaphanous silk 'Saris' that, according to folklore, could be passed through a finger ring and the poor wore coarsely woven cotton 'Saris'.

"All 'Saris' were handwoven and represented a considerable investment of time or money. Simple hand-woven villagers' 'Saris' are often decorated with checks or stripes woven into the cloth and inexpensive 'Saris' were also decorated with block printing using carved wooden blocks and vegetable dyes or tie-dyeing, known in India as 'Bhandani' work"

A 'Sari' is a long piece of fabric wound around the body and 'Salwar kameez' are worn by women all over India. A 'Bindi' is part of a woman's make-up. Despite common belief, the 'Bindi' on the forehead does not signify marital status, however, the 'Sindoor' does. There is also another kind of tradional clothing for women in India, which is the 'Rangoli' or the 'Kolam', which are a traditional art very popular among Indian women.

The traditional clothing for women includes the 'Sari', which is cut and wrapped differently depending on the region. Another important traditional garment for women is the 'Salwar kamiz', a combination of trousers 'Salwar', a tunic 'Kamiz' and a cloth 'Dupatta'. Many Indian women also wear a 'Choli', a tight blouse.

Typical traditional Indian garments for men include 'Dhoti', 'Lungi' and 'Kurta'. Traditional Indian headgear is the turban for men and the headscarf 'Odhni' or 'Dupatta' for women. In addition to traditional clothing, you can also see western clothing such as shirts or jeans, sometimes in combination with traditional clothing.

"The earliest known depiction of the 'Sari' in the Indian subcontinent is the statue of an Indus Valley priest wearing a drape. It is generally accepted that wrapped 'Sari'-like garments for lower body and sometimes shawls or scarf like garment called 'Uttariya' for upper body, have been worn by Indian women for a long time and that they have been worn in their current form for hundreds of years"

Sarees a common dressing in India
The word 'Sari' is actually meaning 'Strip of cloth' and have been of great interest for the photographer to photograph. 'Sattika' is mentioned as describing women's attire in ancient India in Buddhist Jain literature called 'Jatakas'. This could be equivalent to modern day 'Sari'. In the history of Indian clothing the 'Sari' is traced back to the Indus Valley Civilization, which flourished during 2,800 to 1,800 BC around the western part of the Indian subcontinent. In ancient couture the lower garment was called 'Nivi' or 'Nivi bandha', while the upper body was mostly left bare. The works of Kalidasa mentions 'Kurpasika' a form of tight fitting breast band that simply covered the breasts.

It was also sometimes referred to as 'Uttarasanga' or 'Stanapatta'. The tightly fitted, short blouse worn under a 'Sari' is a 'Choli', which evolved as a form of clothing in the 10th century AD and the first cholis were only front covering, the back was always bare but covered with end of saris 'Pallu'. This type are still common in the state of Rajasthan.

See this video about 'Sarees' in India made by Times Of India.

Vibrant and rich history
Rajasthan is one of the most beautiful states in India, renowned for its majestic forts, colorful culture and vibrant cities. Located in the western part of the country, Rajasthan is known for its vibrant and rich history, vibrant culture and stunning landscapes. It is a state that is full of surprises and promises an unforgettable experience for visitors.

The city of Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan and it serves as the gateway to the state. It is filled with a number of historical monuments, beautiful gardens and bustling markets. It is also home to some of the most famous forts and palaces in India, such as the Amber Fort, Hawa Mahal and City Palace. Rajasthan is also known for its vibrant culture and traditions. Hinduism is the main religion of the state andis deeply ingrained in the daily lives of its people. There are various festivals celebrated here, including the 'Pushkar Mela' and the 'Gangaur Festival'. Rajasthan is also home to vibrant folk music and dance, with musicians performing at various events.

The state is also home to some stunning wildlife parks and reserves, such as the Ranthambore National Park and the Sariska Tiger Reserve and these are great places to visit to explore the local wildlife and nature. Rajasthan is also a great place to shop, with numerous markets selling traditional clothing, jewelry and handicrafts. The state is also renowned for its delicious cuisine, with dishes such as 'Dal Baati Churma', 'Bajre ki Roti' and 'Ghevar' being popular.

Overall, Rajasthan is a beautiful and vibrant state that promises a unique experience to its visitors. With its diverse culture, stunning landscapes, and vibrant cities, it is a place that will leave you with lasting memories.

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More archive stories

India is a land full of stories. On every street, on every corner and in the many places in India, life is rushing by you as a photographer with millions of stories to be told. In the archive story above, you hopefully had a readable insight in the story that was behind the photo of an Indian woman wearing a 'Sari' in India. On this website of Kristian Bertel | Photography you can find numerous travel pictures from the photographer. Stories and moments that tell the travel stories of how the photographer captured the specific scene that you see in the picture. The photographer's images have a story behind them, images that all are taken from around India throughout his photo journeys. The archive stories delve into Kristian's personal archive to reveal never-before-seen, including portraits and landscapes beautifully produced snapshots from various travel assignments. The archive is so-far organized into photo stories, this one included, each brought to life by narrative text and full-color photos. Together, these fascinating stories tell a story about the life in India. India, the motherland to many people around the world, a land of unforgetable travel moments. The archive takes viewers on a spectacular visual journey through some of the most stunning photographs to be found in the photographer's archive collection. The photographer culled the images to reflect the many variations on the universal theme of beauty and everyday life in India. By adding these back stories the photographer's work might immensely enhanced the understanding of the photographs.