Banarasi Sari: An Overview

Fashion StudiesFashion & Styles

Banarasi Sari: An Overview

Banarasi saris are the most expensive saris in India. The primary distinguishing features of these saris are their beautiful silk embroidery and border edges. They are created using various weaving methods. They can take 15 days, a month, or even up to six months to finish completely. Indian women typically wear these saris on special occasions.

Why are Banarasi Saris So Special?

The Banarasi saris are the finest work done by the weavers of India. The pure silk and the handloom make it unique and attractive. The pure silk, which never loses its characteristics, and the lustrousness in the textile and the designs are very rare to find. Banarasi saris are the most famous saris that are made in Varanasi. These saris are the finest saris in all of India. The saris are made up of gold and silver zari, which differentiates them from other saris. They are also known for their vibrant colors. Their designs are very unique and distinctive. These saris have different kinds of engravings on them, which makes them not only heavy but expensive as well.


It is well known that the 19th century is when Banaras' brocade and zari textiles were first mentioned. Due to the migration of Gujarati weavers in 1603 and the beginning of the production of silk brocades in Banaras in the seventeenth century, the weaving of gold and silver zari became Banaras' specialty during the reign of the Mughal emperor. Traditional saris inundated the market as synthetic silk entered the modern era.

The Making of Banarasi Saris

The biggest reason for Banarasi saris' being famous is that they are handmade and woven on handlooms. First, weavers find the high-quality silk. Before being turned into thread, it must first be cleaned and dyed. The white silk is draped over steel rods by the dyers, who then immerse it in tanks of boiling soap water while rubbing the yarn with their hands to make it brilliant and silky. After one more wash, they hang the item to dry. Warm water, caustic soda, and acid are mixed with the coloured substances. This process takes two to three hours to complete. The hue is changed by the dyers depending on the city, festival, and season. Muggle Persian and Chinese elements are combined in the artwork. This piece is known as likhai. Traditional patterns or original creations are both used in likhai. The majority of Banarasi saris are 6 yards long and are woven using 5,000 threads. Additionally, makers use water to soften and maintain their suppleness. Years of practice are needed to create the silk strands that give saris their distinctive appearance.

However, the invention of synthetic silk made it simpler to weave saris, which overflowed the market in recent decades. Although only Varanasi garments have received government verification.

Components of the Banarasi Sari


Banarasi saris are very heavy in weight and highly embroidered. They are traditionally made in four varieties: organza, Georgette sari, Shatir sari, and pure silk. However, they have many varieties of Banarasi silk, organza, satin, borders, brocades, jangal, tanchoi, cutwork, and resham butidar. These saris contain different kinds of prints on them, mainly fruits, human figures, birds, floral, and geometric patterns.


There are several subcategories of Banarasi saris, including Tissue, Butidar, Cutwork, Tanchoi, and Jangal. Golden zari brocade is woven into tissue sarees to give them shine. Self-woven paisleys are used as a pattern on the saree's borders and pallu. Silver, silk, and gold brocade threads are used in the weaving of butidar sarees. Weft silk threads in vibrant colours are used to weave the designs on tanchoi saris. Jangal sarees are made of vibrant silk threads, and they have intricately woven Jangala motifs and natural greenery all over them.


The Georgette, Shattir, Organza with zari and silk, and Katan fabric types are the four main fabric types used in Banarasi sarees. Crepe yarn is interwoven with both the warp and the weft to create the delicately woven light fabric known as georgette. Beautiful, contemporary, and expensive Banarasi saree designs are created with shattir cloth. Warp and weft are used to create the most exquisite brocade patterns and designs on the intricately woven fabric known as organza. Zari brocade is made by weaving silk yarns around silver threads that have been coated in gold. Pure silk sarees are made from pure silk threads weaved into a plain fabric called katan.

Today’s Fashion Industry

Despite being incredibly traditional, Banarasi saris' charm has not yet been fully realised. In the present day, prints are widely utilised to create wedding invitations, table runners, drapes, curtains, cushion covers, potli gift bags, and jewellery. Today's fashion industry is finding a new home for Banarasi attire. Banarasi fabric is used in hotels and resorts for decorating. They are employed in wedding situations as well.


Banarasi saris are well known and significant because they preserve tradition. This custom and the love we have for it shouldn't fade away. The pride of India is the Banarasi sari, which inspires pride in Indian culture, fabrics, and designs. With time, this custom should receive greater support. The Banarasi sari is a must-have in the wardrobe.

Updated on 13-Oct-2022 11:19:47