Today, Indian weddings are incomplete without a Banarasi saree. From the bride to the guests, everybody is purchasing Banarasi saree online, as it is the new must-have statement piece.
Many women buy Banarasi saree online not just for weddings but because they prefer to have the statement piece in their closet due to its sophistication and elegance. This saree is not only famous within our country but is also gaining an exponential amount of following internationally. It is also very popular among the youngsters.

The history of the elegant nine yards:

The history of sarees goes way back to 300 B.C. The beautiful Banarasi silk was introduced to Indian culture by the Mughal Empire during their reign, and it stuck. These sarees have incredibly detailed weaving and patterns made with excellent craftsmanship. The beauty is instilled upon them by the weavers through their hard work. In earlier days, the silk used in making these elegant sarees were traditionally imported from countries such as China. However, due to a budding silk industry in India’s Southern parts, the silk now comes from there. There is a mix of Mughal Banarasi and Indian Banarasi silk sarees available today in the market.

Guide to Identify and purchase the perfect Banarasi saree:

It isn’t easy to identify and buy pure Banarasi saree online, but the following points can certainly help. It is always better to check for these in a saree before investing in it:

The Weave:

There are so many ways to identify and look for pure Banarasi saree online and while visiting stores, but the weaving technique used is one of the most common ways to identify. If in-store, one way to check is by reversing the saree’s pallu and checking for floats between wefts and warps, especially the grids. If the saree claims to be a pure Banarasi silk saree, then the technique of warp and wefts would have been used, which will stand out for sure.

The Pallu:

A pure Banarasi silk saree will undoubtedly have a pallu with beautiful patchwork that will cover around 6 to 8 inches of the pallu, done with weaves with such craftsmanship that any person will be able to tell apart a pure Banarasi from a fake one.

The Patterns:

A pure Banarasi silk saree is very distinct from all other silk sarees or other material sarees. One main distinction is the weave and pattern on the saree. The patterns on a pure Banarasi contain Mughal influence; the patterns mimic the tradition and history deeply rooted in weaving the beauties. The famous Mughal patterns often seen on pure Banarasi silk are Domak, Ambi, and Amru. If the saree is fake, they can be identified as they would not have Persian patterns and designs weaved into it.

The Geographical Indication:

Every Banarasi saree made from pure silk has its own G.I. mark (Geographical Indication). This is an Intellectual Property right made available to weavers by the Indian Government to distinguish a Banarasi saree from the districts they were made in. As per the clause, the original Banarasi silk sarees are hand made only in six districts in Uttar Pradesh. These six districts, namely – Jaunpur, Bhadohi, Varanasi, Mirzapur, Chandauli and Azamgarh, have their respective G.I. marks. Hence always make sure to check for the mark.

Zari Thread:

Due to an increase in the prices of gold and silver, the zari or threads used to weave the Banarasi sarees are now alloys of copper that are plated with gold or silver. A trained or experienced eye can certainly spot the real from the fake. As the experts state, the authentic Banarasi sarees have a not too glittery zari, but the sari’s look will still be elegant. Whereas, in a fake Banarasi saree, the zari is almost fake-looking as it glitters a lot more than usual.

Cost of the Saree:

Banarasi sarees do not come cheap, mainly because the craftsmanship that goes into making one of these is too high. Each saree can vary from a weave time of 15 days to even 6 months. Depending on the time taken to weave, the detail of the weave design, type of zari threads used, a simple Banarasi saree could cost around INR 2,500, but a heavily worked on Banarasi silk saree could range anywhere between INR 20,000 to INR 2,00,000. The value of the sarees goes up as the details on them get heavy and more intricate.