Once upon a time, no matter where you turned, you saw women draped graciously with yards of beautiful fabric. Even today, you can find rows of sarees, from elaborate silk to breezy cotton sarees stored in closets in a rainbow of colors and designs. But the increasing pace of our modern lifestyle, that we all enjoy today, has led to everyone abandoning these sensual yet elegant attires for something quicker and easier to don. Moving about doing our daily chores just becomes easier with the more functional, jeans, skirts, or salwar kameez. Yet, when we buy sarees online we store them with reverence, waiting for that special occasion or celebration, when we will wear the beautiful creations.
But in 2015, two Bengaluru-based women decided to shake the dust off their neatly pressed attires, ones that they had zealously collected, but hardly worn, from collections that hung unseen in their wardrobes and trunks. While they too had moved on to the more convenient and modern sense of dressing, better suited to the hectic lifestyles, they decided to make a pact.
“This year both of us were speaking about wearing saris more often and bringing back more elegant dressing in our wardrobes” – Anju Maudgal Kadam and Ally Matthan write, on their website, 100sareepact.com.
They took a decision together to shower their sarees with the love that they deserve, and came up with the #100SareePact, to wear their sarees a 100 times before the year came to an end. Wearing sarees 100 times a year means wearing a saree about twice in one week. Not only did they begin following their pact, but they also invited other women to join them and to use their sarees as mediums to weave a story. Ms Matthan and Ms Maudgal Kadam invited women to share their photos wearing a saree with the hashtag #100SareePact. The story that they asked the women to create, could be anything from the reason behind the purchase, a special memory associated with the saree, a simple story of the design and weaving, etc. The basic idea was to breathe in new life into this elegant dressing option.
As they began sharing their own photos and stories, more and more women joined the pact; and as the pact gained popularity, the goal of the two friends seemed closer to fruition as it ignited a dialogue about this beautiful attire. People bought more of the everyday cotton sarees online as well as the special Kalamkari sarees online, and they began wearing them with increased gusto, becoming a part of the #100SareePact. Now, the site and the pact have hundreds of members who are all determined to bring alive the elegant and eternal love for sarees. There are offshoots of this pact like the #India SareeChallenge and the #GurgaonSareeChallenge that draw inspiration from the journey of these two ladies. Via these groups, women are choosing to wear different sarees, rekindling memories and sharing trivia of this versatile drape.
A woman can never have enough sarees, so go online and choose sarees from across India to bring that flair and poetry back into your wardrobe, and your life!
NOTE – We believe that these Saree revival movements have the potential to be etched out into a series of write-ups, hence we’ll be throwing light on them one movement at a time.