What Is a Sari?

Quck answer

A sari is a traditional garment worn by women in South Asia, particularly in India. It consists of a long piece of fabric that is draped around the body, with one end draped over the shoulder. The fabric is usually made of silk, cotton, or a blend of both. Saris come in various colors, patterns, and designs, and can be embellished with embroidery, sequins, or beads. They are typically worn with a matching blouse and petticoat underneath. Saris are considered a symbol of Indian culture and are worn for special occasions such as weddings, festivals, and religious ceremonies.

Do you ever accompany your family on clothes shopping trips? Many children do. It’s an excellent opportunity to express yourself through fashion. After all, there are numerous types of clothing available, and they can vary depending on your geographical location.

Today’s Wonder of the Day focuses on a traditional dress worn by people in various parts of Asia. It is popular in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal. Can you guess what we’re talking about? Yes, it’s the sari!

What exactly is a sari? Also known as a saree, it is a long, rectangular piece of fabric that can range from four to nine yards (3.5 to 8 meters) in length. The sari is draped and wrapped around the body to achieve a desired shape. While various fabrics can be used to make a sari, cotton and silk are the most common choices.

How long have people been wearing saris? This style dates back approximately 5,000 years to the Indus Valley Civilization. In fact, it is one of the oldest clothing styles still worn today. Experts believe that the word “sari” originated from the Sanskrit word for “strip of cloth.”

Over time, the sari has undergone significant changes. Influenced by different cultures and global events, modern saris come in a wide range of styles. In fact, there are over 100 ways to drape the fabric.

While saris are fashionable, they also hold cultural significance, particularly in India and other parts of Asia. Some styles are more prevalent in specific regions and are as much a part of the local culture as food and language.

Saris also play a special role in various cultural holidays and events. For instance, the wedding sari is a traditional garment for brides. It often features the color red but can come in different shades. People often choose the colors of their saris based on their symbolic meaning in a particular culture or tradition.

Have you ever seen or worn a sari? If you have, you know that they can be incredibly beautiful. In addition to color, many saris are adorned with intricate patterns. These patterns are often embroidered into the fabric using silk or other special threads. Some saris are even embellished with beads or precious gems.

Since saris can be draped and wrapped in various styles, they can fit people of all shapes and sizes. As a result, they are often passed down through generations within families. For some families, it is a tradition to make new saris together. Nowadays, saris can also be purchased from clothing stores and designers.

What types of clothing hold importance in your culture? Whether it’s the sari, kimono, kilt, or something else, we’re confident that you wear it with pride. After all, clothing is an excellent way to celebrate your culture and heritage.

Try It Out

Are you interested in learning more about saris and traditional clothing from around the world? Enlist the help of a friend or family member and try out the following activities:

  • Explore saris and view the vibrant images here. Can you create equally captivating patterns? Enlist the help of a friend or family member, and use paper, markers, crayons, or Canva to design your own fun and colorful patterns for a sari.
  • This Wonder mentions traditional clothing from different parts of the world, such as kimonos and kilts. Can you think of other types of traditional clothing? Have you ever witnessed someone expressing their culture through their attire and wanted to learn more? Compose a story describing what you observed, including the colors, shapes, and whether it was part of a performance or play. Share your story with a friend or family member.
  • Read this article to discover more about traditional clothing from various cultures around the world. Which ones pique your interest the most? Do you have your own traditional garments that you wear on special occasions? Are there any from the article that you would love to try on? Discuss with a friend or family member their favorite traditional clothes and the cultural significance behind them.

Wonder Sources

  • https://theculturetrip.com/asia/india/articles/a-brief-history-of-indias-traditional-saree/ (accessed 09 Aug. 2021)
  • https://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/fashion-beauty/article/3105494/history-sari-ancient-india-fashion-runways-simple (accessed 09 Aug. 2021)
  • https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Sari (accessed 09 Aug. 2021)
  • https://strandofsilk.com/indian-fashion-blog/driven-curiosity/how-has-saree-evolved-over-time (accessed 09 Aug. 2021)
  • https://www.verymuchindian.com/history-of-the-saree/?v=7516fd43adaa (accessed 09 Aug. 2021)
  • https://learnersdictionary.com/ (accessed 09 Aug. 2021)

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