Bandhas of odisha

The ikat textiles called ‘bandhas’ are produced in odisha. Mostly, bandhas are single ikats or combined ikats, woven by specific weaver groups like Mehars and Patras. Cotton and silk ikats are manufactured in Cuttack, Nuapatna, Sonepur, Bargarh and Sambalpur.

The bandhas of odisha are characterized by curved forms with hazy outlines. The distinct hazy lines are created since only one set of yarns in the fabric are tie-dyed. Mainly weft ikat is done in odisha. Some popular motifs are shankha or conch shell, swastika, creepers, flowers like lotus, intertwined snake, fish, tortoise and elephant.

The bandha weavers of odisha are known for the usage of striking colour combinations and delicate intricate patterns. The ikat saris of odisha are the popular attire of the local women, and are also preferred by the modern women of India. Besides the cotton and silk ikat saris, the other products woven by the weavers are yardage, stoles, scarves and dupattas.

a well-known example of the ikat sari from odisha is ‘Saktapar’ sari. This sari is traditionally the pride of the region, with the double ikat checker board pattern and extra weft brocaded border of rudraksha, bead and fish (Pic. 3.4). The sari is characterized by its typical end piece, pallu comprising of bands of floral and figurative ikat motifs, divided by narrow woven patterned lines.