Handlooms in Odisha today have ushered in exquisite fabrics, breathtaking in their range. Yet they are durable and economical. The mastery of the weavers have especially touched sylvan heights in tassar silk. The tassar cooperatives produce the finest quality yarn whose brilliance, glaze and texture is testified by their popularity.
The attention to details from silkworm cultivation to silk weaving combine centuries of experience and modern know how, to create silk ties, and sarees that harmonise the delicate feel with a soothing blend of colours, elegant and attractive, exquisite but comfortable.
The textiles have an individuality of their own. Bold and unusual patterns, vibrant yet subtle blend of colours, unique tie and die effects and a luxuriant texture characterize them. The State is famous for its silk ikat weaves, an intricate process (bandha) in which wrap and weft threads are first tied and then dyed, to produce the designed pattern on the loom while weaving.
Typical design motifs include rows of birds and animals, fish, seashells, rudraksh beads and temple spires.The most popular and flagship item of tie and dye textile of Odisha is the Saree. Typical varieties of Odisha sarees are Khanduas, Saktapada, Tarabali and Bichitrapuri, to name a few made both in cotton and silk. However, the weavers also delve into other items like bed covers, dress materials, handkerchiefs and lungi & gamuchha (towel)
The tribal people of the State also excel in producing textiles of myriad hues using vegetable dyes.
The famous centres for Odisha handloom are Sambalpur – famous for its Sambalpuri Sarees. The villages at Bargarh, Sonepur and Kendpalli are the hub of this famous weave. The lanes are lined with houses of the master craftsmen plying their trade oblivious from the hustle and bustle of the mundane world.
Berhampur is another centre famous for its Berhampuri Patta Sarees. The Silk Sarees are exquisite in its detailing yet comfortable to wear. The lanes of Ganesh Nagar in the city is hub where the famous weavers of Berhampuri Patta reside.
Koraput – One can’t talk of Odisha without mentioning its Tribal community. The contribution of the tribes of Odisha in shaping its cultural heritage is beyond measure. The Dongaria & Ikat sarees are the most popular handloom from Koraput which has caught the imagination of the handloom overs.