Considered the fabric of royalty, with its restrained gloss and sheer texture, chanderi is celestial myth turned to fabric. The fabric borrows its name from a small town in Madhya Pradesh where, even today, sixty percent of the population is still involved in the manufacturing of this fabric.
A mix of cotton and silk, chanderi is produced by weaving zari into silk, a process that lends it that signature glossiness we’re so partial to. The sheer delicacy and luxury of chanderi is the reason it was solely patronised by royalty, until 1910, when the royal family of Scindia took the fabric under their wing, and the gold thread found its way onto the muslin cotton sari. Later, in the 1970’s, silk was introduced, and following an upswing in demand, chanderi was woven with both cotton and silk.
The head of our clothing team, Aparna Chandra, told us why she loves the fabric and why you should too.
“Chanderi takes colour beautifully, the fabric is delicate and needs to be treated with care, but we don’t mind the extra effort when the pieces look this beautiful. We love that it’s an all natural fabric, that keeps our pieces airy, light and most importantly, Indian.”
Spun as fine as 300 count handspun cotton warps and wefts, this fabric is special, and it needs special care. It’s advisable to dry clean the fabric in order to protect it, and to not expose it to direct sunlight when drying.