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As women were largely restricted inside and rarely appeared before men, the lack of the upper garment wasn’t felt strongly. One of the most significant Indian artistes, Raja Ravi Varma, sensuously depicted the feminine form with yards and yards of flowing substance loosely covering the lower and upper parts of the human body but the choli is obviously absent. From the mid 19th century, that this baring of this midriff stirred a controversy at the princely Kerala state of Travancore and the style started to fall rapidly. Exposure of the navel became a taboo and later dressing fashions reveal girls with midriffs covered. A sari is called the ultimate symbol of Indian culture with its own graceful and flowing appearance, molding the shapes of their body without revealing too much, nevertheless improving the feminine form in a tasteful way. Seen as the perfect costume, most well suited to its warm and sultry weather of the sub-continent, the saree comes woven, printed, painted or embroidered in many types of material from cotton varieties of the hand-woven and machine stitched attributes to silk, nylon, lace, web etc. For bra online shopping just visit some of the famous brands.

The world of modern fashion and dressing has evolved throughout the centuries as humankind has. There are many costumes and styles of dressing that specify countries and regions of the world with their unique appearance, sheer assortment of material, prints and designs. But none occupies the premier position as the sari or saree, that’s the national costume of India; its influence spreads not only to each corner of the country but its prevalence has spawned related grooming styles around South East Asia. The expression”sari” is a derivative of the Sanskrit word”sati” or even”sadi” in Prakrit, which means’a strip of fabric. In later usage, it became embraced as sari or saree in Hindi. The Jatakas or early Buddhist Jain literature, while describing the apparel of girls, uses the term”sattika”. In ancient India, the sari was likely a long piece of cloth wrapped round the female body, especially the upper and lower portions, as a means of modest clothing to prevent exposure. This garment was probably not utilized in the earlier days; as we see from paintings, sketches and drawings of women, most of the ancient girls went blouse-less, preferring to draw the saree around the midriff, over the back and shoulders to cover themselves modestly.

The sari, in the modern age, is a normal long piece of fabric, extending to five and a half meters or six yards in length with a mean elevation of 44 inches. The upper, inner portion of the fabric may be bare without any pattern or design while the outer part or the part that is draped around the waist and over the left shoulder, called the”pallav” or the”pallu” typically includes a motif, adorned boundaries or designs in fabric, embroidered patches or metallic adornments. There are many techniques to drape a saree however the usual method adopted is that the one where it is worn over a petticoat or a loose skirt starting at the waist and falling down into the ankles.

The petticoat is known as’lehenga’ in north India, as’pavadai’ in the south,’ghagra’ from the west and as’shaya’ in southern India. The earliest depiction of the sari as an Indian outfit dates back to the Indus Valley Civilization that thrived from the Indian subcontinent from 2800-1800 BC. Both men and women draped themselves so long, flowing fabric akin to a sari. Ancient legends, epics and writings like Banabhatt’s Kadambari along with the Tamil Silappadhikaram described women draped in exquisite, hand-woven saris. The ancient Indian treatise, the Natya Shastra, while providing details on ancient dance styles and costumes, clarifies the custom of wearing the costume draped in trapping folds around the entire body leaving the midriff, in particular the navel, exposed. As the human body takes on the form of the Supreme Being where the navel is the source of creativity and life, the midriff is left exposed. The Gandhara, Gupta and Mathura colleges of art and sculpture from the 1st to the 6th century AD depict dancers and goddesses wearing the’fishtail’, a dhoti wrap type of garment which covered the legs and then flowed in front of the legs at a decorative and long drape, knotted at the waist. The upper body has been left detected with no choli or bodice.

Cholis or the short blouse worn beneath the sari probably evolved as a form of clothing from the 10th century AD, when girls in royalty, started to appear in people, performing roles as rulers and administrators. The first cholis simply covered the front portion of the torso leaving the back exposed or secured with strings; now, these back-less blouses are not just a contemporary fashion but also depict tribal and village outfits worn by women of several states in north India. The earliest works of Kalidasa mention the garments worn by girls as a’dhoti’ or’sarong’ covering the body from waist , combined with what was known as a stanapatta’ or’kurpasika’ meaning that a garment wrapped round the bust and a’uttariya’ or shawl used to cover the head. It’s thought that the’mundum neryathum’ worn by women from Kerala even now, harks back to the ancient Indian type of clothing.

 

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