If you ask people about Jamdani, Tant, or Muslin, there is a higher chance of getting a positive reply. But, there are names of Kalakhetra sarees varieties that may make people wonder what it is exactly. Kalakhetra is one such name.
It is a new name compared to Dhakai or Tant. It lacks the tale or events of age-old traditions. Rather, it presents an interesting mix of tradition and innovation. It may not have the glory of being associated with old times, but it surely shows the mingling of old-world charm and modernity.
The making of Kalakhetra sarees owes its thanks to Rukmini Devi Arundale, a reputed dancer of Bharatnatyam. She set up Kalakhetra, an institute for exploring fine arts, including dance forms, in 1936. The following year she added a weaving section. It was developed aiming to produce traditional handlooms for dance attire as sarees.
Through researching traditional techniques and saree-making practices, she decided on the patterns, motifs, colors, material, and design. It paved the path for developing a saree variety that came to be known as “Kalakhetra.” It used a complex weaving technique Korvai. These sarees have motifs that have individualist yet blending appeal.
The color palette Rukmini designed is awe-inspiring. The signature color is mustard yellow. She mentored the use of brighter shades like red, yellow, and green in Kalakhetra. When its production began, it used a German color.
You can order any Kalakhetra saree of your choice. But, the design developed by Rukmini may have got lost amid the chaos of modern life. The saree was developed as a reminiscence of dance. Bharatnatyam dancers may have a special pull towards the memory of older versions of Kalakhetra sarees.
Association of dance caused the inclusion of temple-based designs in these varieties. Like, these are available in copper red, yellow, and rust shades reminding the colors associated with temples. It added a rich appeal to its appearance. It added different dynamics to the whole look. The designs in the body and pallu were inspired by the architectural elements of temples.
These sarees have its root in Indian tradition despite being comparatively contemporary. It has an old-world appeal mixed with a modern vibe. The use of bright and contrasting colors sets you apart in a crowd. The sarees have a distinct pattern of motifs. Designs revived from the institute founded by Rukmini reveal three sections.
The upper and lower parts make the borders. Traditional motifs were inspired by ornament shapes, natural elements, and mythological characters. Geometric shapes were also used. Moreover, there were motifs having flowers and geometric shapes. An elaborate pallu consisted of designs inspired by birds, animals, and temples. These make it relatable to every irrespective of social standards.
Over the course of time, new patterns have emerged. It adds versatility to the Kalakhetra sarees. These are available in striped, checked, and intricate patterned borders.
Kalakhetra sarees can be a great addition to your saree collection. Just like having a Jamdani adds a classic touch to your wardrobe, having a Kalakhetra gives a contemporary feel. This is how you can make your stock balanced.
Ashmi’s Creations have Kalakhetra sarees in an interesting mix of colors. These look vibrant and effortlessly chic. Their bodies are vibrant with lustrous sheen and motifs, while the pallu regions have different colors. It breaks the monotony of the look and makes it appear lively. From using it as office attire to attending any celebratory event on short notice, their collections have got you covered.