The weaving culture in Chanderi, Madhya Pradesh originated between the second and seventh centuries, popularized by the trading routes to south Gujarat. The Chanderi sari itself was woven in the thirteenth century, with the weavers originally being Muslims. During the Mughal period, the textile business in Chanderi was at its greatest.
Chanderi sarees are made from pure silk and chanderi cotton. This was popular among the royals for its soft, light texture and shimmering translucent look. Originally made from pure cotton and completely handmade today silk is most commonly used as the warp, for a stronger finish and a glimmering effect. Today natural dyes have been replaced by chemical dyes. Though many of the names and colours are derived from organic materials, like flowers, fruits and vegetables.
The chanderi sari is referred to as “woven air” they come in a vast range of colours, from pastel hues to vibrant shades or red, purple and blue. Special hand embroidered motifs and gold zari set these saris apart. A sari usually takes three days or more days to weave depending on the complexity of the design. Today, the chanderi is one of the most protected crafts by the Indian government, preserving one of the finest aspects of our heritage.