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Ethnic weaves

The exhibition of Maheshwari and Chanderi saris at Mrignayanee showcases the rich weaves and artistic splendour of Madhya Pradesh.

EXQUISITELY WOVEN, delicate and ethereal cotton and silk saris... Kamala Devi Chattopadhyay likened the weavers of Chanderi and Maheshwari saris to "magicians who waved a wand to produce dream like saris".

Indeed, the Chanderi's gossamer texture spattered with silver butties is the stuff of dreams. Who can resist the simple charm of a Maheshwari, its elegance set off by a typical five-striped pallav?

Add to the distinctive weave the beauty of Bagh block prints and you have a collection of saris from Madhya Pradesh.

At the on-going exhibition at Mrignayanee (1A TNHB Complex, 180 Luz Church Road, Mylapore), the Madhya Pradesh Government emporium, of Maheshwari and Chanderi saris, hand picked from Indore and Maheshwar, the range comprises soft, subtle colours to strong vibrant contrasts, from elegant stripes and checks of the bordered Maheswari to lovely Chanderis.

There are Chanderi silks with exquisite, understated woven borders, cottons with delicate yet rich zari work and a wide choice of sophisticated plain Chanderi cottons with a spattering of butties or thin zari borders.

The Maheshwaris come in a delectable range from subtle to strong plain colours with typical kam phool reversible borders as well as attractive stripes and checks.

Mastercraftsman Suleiman Khatri's Bagh block prints in both Maheshwari and Chanderi cottons and silks add a stunning dimension to the collection. Done in vegetable dyes in typical amri, floral and vine motifs, Suleiman Khatri's magical hands transform the saris into couture wear.

Mehndi green, yellow, ochre, leaf green and indigo blue silks... each of the pieces is perfect choice for morning and evening wear.

The exhibition-cum-sale is on for two weeks.

PUSHPA CHARI

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