India's premier luxury lifestyle women's magazine
Fashion
August 11, 2016

Verve Revival: Be a Sari Warrior!

Text by Sitanshi Talati Parikh

Join us as we come together to revive the timeless Indian classic

A chance conversation with a marketing executive in her 30s who had recently joined the #100sareepact left us thinking about the garment that has defined the Indian woman for generations. Women have used these 9-yards-of-magic to mark some of the most landmark events in their lives — coming of age, engagements and weddings, rituals, baby showers, naming ceremonies, formal events…even board meetings and magazine covers. Abroad, Indian women are not only admired for this style, but also envied for the visual appeal and grace it lends. As we choose to conduct our daily lives in more ‘comfortable’ attire, as we pick kurtas with palazzo pants, kurtis and leggings, distressed denims and cropped tops, stylish dresses and flirty skirts, we are slowly, but surely relegating the sari to the dark recesses of our wardrobes, and potentially marking its extinction.

Taking the leap, I stepped out in a sari, and spent over ten hours at work wearing one, and I realised that it’s not as hard as it sounds. I chose something light, that made it easy to maneuver. That’s not to say it didn’t have it’s share of hurdles — I couldn’t find a blouse that fit, so had to make do with a fitted sleeveless shirt. (I’m still replacing blouses with shirts of all kinds.) My daughter looked up at me and raised her brows with surprise: “Mamma, why are you wearing a sari?” It clinched it — the next generation is going to either wonder why one would wear it, or go by not having seen it at all, except in some dusty archives. There may not even remain grounds for nostalgia.

The women I hoped to inspire had shared concerns — that commuting to work is tricky (fair point), they didn’t know how to wear one (best resolved sooner than later), they didn’t have a sari blouse to match/fit (a structured shirt does the trick) and the best yet, they didn’t possess a sari except for the embellished kind that sparkled all the way to Saturn. With a conscious industry revival in heritage crafts, textile movements and the desire to bring sustainability to the forefront, there are more options for simple saris, in beautiful Chanderis, stunning colours, handloom variations, local inspirations and funky patterns all making life in the 9-yard-world a much better place.

So Verve, a 20-year-old magazine that is has an Indian soul encased in its chic global sensibility, is the right one to take a step forward, pleats intact, to ensure that starting now, for generations to come, we do our bit in engaging in the stunning grace of the garment that will always be special and very real to an Indian woman.

We also would like to thank all our friends from the fashion and lifestyle industries who have been sending in their quotes, images, wishes and gorgeous selfies!

So here’s a shout out to all of you lovely women out there — let’s go the yard, and be the change, one drape at a time.

See the most versatile ways of wearing the sari, here.

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