Paithan town, situated in Aurangabad District
, is renowned for its exquisite piece of textile called Paithani saree. This attire is hand woven using pure silk, gold and silver threads. The gold and silver threads are made by hammering the actual metals into fine threads. These metal threads are mainly used for weaving the pallu (decorative end of the saree
) and the borders, for which the saree is famous.
The art of weaving this textile, which flourished during 200 BC, has existed for nearly 2000 years. The skill has been handed down from generation to generation. In the ancient times, this cloth was bartered for gold and precious stones.
The weaving process, a combination of creativity and hard work, is painstakingly slow and may take a day to weave an inch. A saree may take anywhere from 2 months to 2 years in the making, depending on its designs. Commonly used motifs are peacock, parrot, lotus, mango and designs borrowed from the Ajanta cave paintings. The authenticity and the cost make this saree a prized possession.