Living in a world where “faster” is the mantra, it would be hard to imagine that dozens of women in Bengal spend five months embroidering a Kathawork sari. Even if you can't afford the silk saris, they are definitely worth a look at the Lepakshi Handicrafts exhibition that opened on Thursday.
Pointing to a sari that had work throughout, Bishwajit Saha, owner of the stall said: “These saris take around five months to make. Women who do the embroidery will work for two or three hours a day after finishing their household chores. If they worked fulltime, these saris would not sell in the market as the price would be too high.”
Kathawork saris and dress material from Bengal, with painstakingly done embroidery on silk, cotton and jute, are available at prices to suit all kinds of pockets.
Starting from Rs. 400, the price can go up to Rs. 3,500 depending on the extent and complexity of the design. The exhibition is sponsored by the Development Commissioner (Handicrafts), Ministry of Textiles, and organised by the Ananthapur-based Lepakshi Handicrafts Emporium, a unit of Andhra Pradesh Handicrafts Development Corporation. The exhibition is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and will be in the city till November 22. One of the highlights of the exhibition is the hand-painted leather items available at reasonable prices. The elaborate and intricate designs are painted in a variety of bold colours. Every stage of the production of the hand-painted wall hangings, lampshades, and door hangings has been done by hand. In this case, it is the family of 70-year-old D. Ramdas, from Ananthapur district, who have produced many of the articles. Manager of the emporium K.V. Subbanna said exhibition had 35 stalls, a large number of whom were selling handicrafts from Andhra Pradesh. Pochampalli print, Kalamkari block-printing, and Mangalagiri saris, and Chirala saris from Andhra Pradesh were all available at the exhibition.
Handmade puja articles from Andhra Pradesh, such as metal pots and deepas were available.