Mrs Sushma Pandey, wife of Ambassador of India to the Sultanate of Oman, organized a mesmerizing and memorable evening of Indian Ethnic Saree and Bridal Wear Show at the premises of Indian Embassy in Muscat on 25 April, 2017.
In her welcome address, Mrs Pandey spoke about the history and continued significance of Saree in Indian culture, since time immemorial, saying that Saree has been recognized the world over as Indian women’s national attire. She stressed that the Show was a small effort to unravel the mystique of Indian ethnic wear Saree that continues to intrigue and mystify women all over the world. She pointed out that Saree, six yards of elegance and comfort, a quintessential Indian garment, has mesmerized women in Indian subcontinent and has been worn by them since antiquity and the resilience of Saree reflects the resilience of Indian culture. Speaking about the regional diversity in the ways in which Sarees are made and draped, she noted that weavers and designers have generated a treasure house of ideas and created such a vast range of Sarees that if a woman wore a different Saree each day, the weaves, prints and designs would be all different from one another during her entire life span.
Mrs Sushma Pandey highlighted that Sarees are made from the most humble rough woven cotton fabric to the finest hand crafted silk tissues spiked with gold and silver threads. They are woven or printed, embroidered and embellished with applique and gold, silver and precious stone work. The richness and opulence of Indian textiles have been vividly described by the ancient, medieval and modern travelers and silk Sarees worn by women in India have been the envy of the world. Saree, the timeless attire, has retained its relevance despite the onslaught of modern styled clothes by constantly reinventing itself and assimilating new features in texture, color, print and design. It has defied the norms of world fashion and set new benchmarks for Indian ethnic wear.
A power point presentation was made to highlight the rich heritage of Indian Sarees and the vast variety of beautiful handwoven Sarees. Some of the famous varieties of handmade Sarees from different regions of India are: North-Banarasi silk, Chikankari, Bhagalpuri, Jamavar, Maheshwari; West-Patola, Bandhani, Ghatchola, Paithani, Parsigara, Karvati; East-Baluchari, Kantha, Sambalpuri, Jamdani; South-Pachampalli, Kanjivaram, Gadwal, Uppada, Ikat etc. Beautiful Indian women, from Indian community in Muscat, draped in varieties of Sarees, walked the ramp, showcasing beautifully crafted Sarees from various States of India, worn in different styles.
An exhibition of Indian ethnic Saree collection, showcasing the distinct, diverse and rich Saree traditions of India, sourced from Lulu Hypermarket, was also on display. A Bridal Wear Show, depicting different costumes worn by brides during their marriage, from diverse regions of India, was another attraction of the Evening. The demonstration of how to drape a Saree drew great enthusiasm and interest from among the hundreds of women, who attended the Show, including Omani women from various Ministries, Omani businesswomen, wives of diplomats and prominent women from the Indian community. There are more than 80 ways of draping a Saree but the most common drape is to wrap the Saree around the waist with one end draped over the shoulder. A Booth was set up for those who wished to try draping a Saree, which was greatly enjoyed by enthusiastic participants. As no Indian evening is considered complete without an Indian dance and music performance, children from Indian community presented a folk dance from Gujarat State of India, which was greatly admired by the audience. The Show, which concluded with a sumptuous Indian dinner, was successful in highlighting various facets of India’s ageless traditional wear, Saree, and Bridal Wears.