STYLES OF DRAPING
Different region people wear a saree in different styles and some styles
require a sari of a particular length. It is worn in 10 to 15 styles throughout
India. The most common style is wrapped around the waist in which one end is
draped over the shoulder. It is five to six yards of unstitched cloth worn over
a Blouse and a Petticoat. In North Karnataka and Maharashtra, women wear a nine
yard saree without a petticoat. Kannadiga, Mangalorean, Kodava, Bengali,
Malayali, Gujarati and Tamilian women wear sarees of different styles. In this
globalized world, the dress of Indians is also getting westernized. Being most
utilitarian in different occasions, it is still reigning in rural India.
Different unique draping styles:
1.Nivi: This style is worn in Andhra Pradesh. It is held in
place by the tucks into the petticoat waistband and the pallu is hanging over
the shoulder. In case of 'Kaccha nivi' , the pleats are passed through the legs
and tucked into the waist at the back allowing free movement.
2.Maharashtrian: In this type of draping a sari, the centre of
the sari is placed at the centre of the back. The ends are brought forward and
tied neatly. Again the two ends are wrapped around the legs. An extra-long
cloth is used and the ends are then passed up over the shoulder. The difference
between this type of sari and the male maharashtrian dhoti is this long cloth
only. The traditional type of nine yards sari is worn by the Brahmin women of
different Southern states of India.
3. Bengali: This style of draping a sari has no pleats. The
pallu has a bunch of keys that falls over the shoulder.
4.Dravidian: In this style, it is pleated rosette, at the waist.
It is worn by Tamil nadu women.
5.Gujarati: In this style of draping, sari is draped over the
right shoulder in the front rather than over the left shoulder. The modern
non-Gujarati women wear this type in social occations with the eye-catching
6.Coorgi: In this style, it involves tying the pleats in the
rear and a small portion of the pallu is placed over the shoulder
7.Mundum Neryathum: This style is worn in Kerala. It made of
unbleached cotton and decorated with gold or colored stripes and borders. It is
also called as the two-piece sari.
8.Gond: In this style, the cloth of the sari is first draped
over the left shoulder and then it arranged to cover the body.
9.Tribal Styles: In tribal styles, sari is tied firmly across
the chest covering the breasts.
Other features to follow while wearing a saree:
About petticoat: It is a long flared craw-string skirt which is
worn underneath a sari to hold the sari in place or to give it shape. Most of
the sari is tucked into the waistband of the petticoat only while draping it.
It is believed that today's petticoat came with the Muslims in the form of the
About Blouse/Choli: Before draping a sari, u should wear a
blouse in the upper part of the body and it just ends above the Mid-riff of u.
It is a tight fitting item of clothing and usually fastens in a row of hooks
along the front. This sleeve length of the Blouse may be full sleeves or half
sleeves or sleeveless. Based on the current fashions, the sleeve length can be
changed. A Choli is a more traditional form of the sari blouse and it fits
tightly to the body. It has to be tied at the back or at the front as a tie in
Sari pallu: The fanciest end of the fabric thrown over the left
shoulder is known as 'pallu'. It is of one metre length. We can use it in
different ways like a shawl or scarf. Saree Fall: It is a matching fabric sown
onto the bottom-side edge of a sari. Its length is approximately 5 inches. It
assists the sari to fall well when draped around the body and so it is called
About Kumkum: It is the Indian name of "vermilion". Indian women
use it to make a round mark between their eyebrows to look more graceful on
saree. These days, this tradition has been changing to wear bindis instead of
About Madisar: In most orthodox Tamil Brahmin households,
dictates that for important ceremonies - like weddings and death anniversarees
- the woman of the house must wear the nine-yard saree which is draped in the
complex manner. The man is also expected to wear the panchagatcham which is a
five-pleated dhoti. It has been handed down through generations.
Without a petticoat, it is worn. If it is wrapped properly, no
other upper or lower garment is needed. This tradition of wearing the nine-yard
saree was prevalent in the States like Karnataka and Maharashtra. In ancient
days, several women wear this type of sari during wars like Jhansi's Queen
Laxmibai. Recently, In Tamilnadu, a 'ready-to-wear' madisar sari is introduced
with complete stitched pleats, hooks and belt.
Iyer way of wearing a madisar:
Make 5-6 pleats in one end of the sari with the same length.
Keep the pleats on your left at the back and bring the saree around your body
and make a knot at the left back in your waist line.
Bring it to the front and tuck one edge almost 1/2 way from that edge in the
front. Make the pleat and bring the whole saree to the back under your legs.
Tuck the saree at the back or at waist line. Bring around the saree through
your left after tucking the shorter edge slightly at your right. Bring the
saree around your body again.
Hold it on your left and pass it on to your right shoulder arranging the
border. Bring the border around and tuck it in the front.