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The community of designers, independent boutiques, brands, and artisans, like us at Padmashali, committed towards reviving heritage weaves of India has seen a dramatic increase over the last decade. While some weaves are seeing a slow yet steady revival, some forms for their versatility, exclusivity, and heritage value are already enjoying global popularity. And it’s quite safe to say that Ikat is one such weave!

Painstaking, timeless, unmatched are only a few among the many words that fall short to describe the beauty of an authentic Ikat Dupatta, silk saree, and its various other forms derived through the latest saree collections, suit co-ord capsules, and beyond. Apart from ethnic renditions like sarees and suit co-ords, a wide collection of which can be viewed on Padmashali, Ikat Dupattas, dresses, and other fusion wear are now a popular choice. In fact, Ikat Dupatta online purchases are a big hit among e-commerce shoppers.

Let’s break down this oh-so-popular weave, and understand the details of Ikat Dupatta, sarees, and other ethnic wear through its making and motifs with Padmashali.

Making of the heirloom

Simply put, Ikat is the yarn, the technique, and the fabric with which an Ikat Dupatta, silk saree, cotton saree, Ikat Dupatta dresses pairing, suit co-ords, and other designs are made. They’re manufactured using a resist-dyeing method, created with warp and weft weaving. Resist-dyeing is a process where impervious substances block certain areas of the fabric from absorbing the dye, whereas other areas are left unblocked to absorb and acquire the colour.

With meticulous attention to detail, each yarn is woven with precision as even a single displacement can affect the entire outcome. Based on whether only the weft threads or both—the warp and the weft threads are resist-dyed, it may be referred to as single Ikat or Double Ikat Dupatta, saree, or other wearables.

While there are more unique characteristics of Ikat Dupatta, the latest saree designs, and more, we’ll get back to that in another blog, another time with Padmasutra on Padmashali. Now, onto the motifs! Find Ikat Dupatta online here.

Motifs of the heirloom

The world of motifs on Ikat Dupatta, silk sarees, Ikat Dupatta dresses pairing, and other wearables is expansive. However, with Gujarati Ikat, you may easily infer references to abstract and geometrical patterns representing flora, fauna, culture, and architecture. In Gujarati, the word ‘Bhat’ means a pattern. When segregated on the basis of their shape and detail, there are over 20 ‘Bhats’. Let’s look at the most frequently occurring patterns, and their symbolism.

Navratna Bhat is said to be inspired by the ‘Nau Grahas’ of the solar system that are the

Ascending and descending nodes of the moon. The ‘Navratna’ or the 9-gem motif is a popular pattern appearing on many traditional and modernized Ikat wearables.

Nari Kunjar Bhat is associated with ‘Nari’ referring to a figure of a female while ‘Kunjar’ refers to elephants. With significance to fertility and cosmic waters, a referential pattern of a dancing female adjacent to an elephant is constructed in a recurring fashion.

Paan Bhat carries religious significance as the heart-shaped ‘Peepal’ leaf is a commonly occurring and sought-after pattern. The word ‘Paan’ literally translates to ‘a leaf’, referring to the ‘Peepal’ leaf in most cases.

Fulvali Bhat generally covers all floral patterns like flowers, shrubs, and creepers represented as a field or a bouquet. This pattern, yet again, is one of the most sought-after designs and found frequently on Ikat Dupattas, traditional and latest saree designs, and other wearables.

Vohragaji Bhat is believed to have originated from the design of the Hindu Janam Kundali. While it is named after the ‘Bohra’ community, a part of the Islamic religious group, this design is patronized by all connoisseurs alike.

Ratanchowk Bhat typically is a variation of the abstract, geometrical patterns. It appears as a bejeweled mosaic-like ‘Bhat’ due to its diamond or square design motifs. In definition, ‘Ratan’ refers to the jewel, and ‘Chowk’ refers to having four sides.

Apart from the few listed above, a few more interesting and fun ‘Bhats’ are Matsya believed to be inspired by a reincarnated avatar of Lord Vishnu in the form of a fish, Taralia referring to a star pattern in the middle of a field, Akhrot deriving its name from walnuts, Chokdi meaning a courtyard, and Chhabadi referential to birds and flowers emerging from an Eight-petalled lotus.

Heirloom indeed?

Whether it is the latest saree design with traditional weave reimagined or Ikat Dupatta in its most traditional state, certain principles remain unchanged with authentic handloomed Ikat. These principles have been passed on generations after generations as the knowledge that still is appreciated, cherished, and valued by handloom connoisseurs to retain the originality of this weave as Ikat Dupatta, silk saree, fusion look with Ikat Dupatta dresses pairing, and beyond. Gujarati Ikat, popularly known as ‘Patola’, with its traditional or latest saree designs, has been making their way to bridal trousseaus as a symbol of cultural significance, prestige, and heirloom piece. What also makes this weave a true symbol of lineage or simply synonymous with what is referred to as heirloom is the carrying forward of its creation technique and the resemblance to our origins, roots, and culture that it boldly showcases in the form of designs and motifs.

Shop your favourite Ikat Dupatta online with Padmashali here Ikkat Duptta.

Shop your favourite Bandhani Dupatta online with Padmashali here Bandhani Dupattas.

And if you’re looking for sarees to add to your wardrobe, look here Ikkat Sarees

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