Odisha: Celebrating culture, festivals and handwoven traditions
It's our favourite place to be and our favourite time of the year. In the Odia month of Asadha (June), the skies burst open with rain, signalling the arrival of monsoon. It is the end of summer and the land comes alive, fertile and ready for the beginning of the agricultural season.
Raja Parba celebrates the fertility of Mother Earth and womanhood, both of which are closely linked to each other in Odia culture. Women dress in their finest clothes, which are handwoven by the renowned weavers of Odisha.
It is followed in the same month by the Ratha Yatra, a chariot festival for Lord Jagannath. In the town of Puri, gigantic wooden chariots that are 45 feet high carry the statues of the Gods.
With a culture that is thousands of years old, Odisha has a traditional arts heritage that has been passed down generations. Here's a look at the handwoven techniques have been developed in the state.
Sambalpuri Ikat Saree
Using the Ikat technique, the Sambalpuri saree is made by tie-dying the warp and the weft before weaving. Originating in the Sambalpur area of Odisha, the sarees feature motifs like flowers and elephants.
Handwoven by the Bhulia weavers, the technique originated in the Bomkai region of Odisha. Using the Jala technique, the famed Bomkai patterns are intricately designed and woven into sarees.
Crafted by tribal weavers from Kotpad village in Odisha, Kotpad dupattas are made using organic vegetable dyes, including the natural dye prepared from the Aul tree. Featuring tribal art and motifs, Kotpad dupattas stand out because of their natural colours.
Nuapatna Khandua Saree
Developed by the weaver communities of the Nuapatna region of Cuttack, the Khandua is an ikat saree worn by women during weddings and also presented as an offering to Lord Jagannath. Featuring mythological motifs, the Khandua saree has recently begun to embrace modern designs with geometric patterns. Nupatna Khandua uses an ikat weaving technique with a blend of cotton in the corners.
Celebrate Odisha with intricately designed traditional wear for you and the women in your life.