Rainbow embedded in six yards

Boga Balaiah   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Boga Balaiah, a traditional handloom weaver from Pochampally village in Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district, has put the colour wheel to shame with his effort in creating a sari.

A whopping 121 hues and an equal number of motifs embellish the 5.5 yard wonder he has woven magic into, after strenuous work of two years.

Through the Ikat dyed mercerised cotton sari, which holds one motif in each box of separate shade as part of the design, Balaiah is aiming for a national award from the Ministry of Textiles.

The sixty-one-year-old says it had been his dream of 10 years to create a sari with so many colour shades and motifs.

“I could not spare time, owing to my financial expediencies and the responsibility to look after my family. Now that my children are settled in their own jobs, I could give shape to my dream,” he says.

He used 11 eco-friendly colours each in warp and weft, namely green, golden yellow, blue, brown, parrot green, grey, orange, Ananda (a shade in blue), lemon yellow and Rani Pink (Fuchsia), which gave the sari its 121 shades.

A single white thread separates every two shades at regular intervals. In addition, he dyed the yarn in five stages with 11 colours each time, to get all the 121 shades in the 1.5 inch border with temple design. The ‘Pallu’ has 11 shades, also with temple design.

“Much of the two years went in finalising the motifs for which my family and I worked a lot. For actual weaving, it took me about two months. My wife Saraswathi’s contribution in preparation of colours is huge, while my children took time off on Sunday to help me accomplish this task,” Balaiah said.

Aiming to weave 16 saris of this kind, he has completed two so far. Balaiah, who had inherited his profession from his father, had woven a sari with 1400 hues earlier.

He says he wishes to bring national award to Pochampally, which is well known across the country for its Ikat saris and dresses.

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Printable version | Apr 14, 2021 12:30:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/rainbow-embedded-in-six-yards/article33999786.ece

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