The Flamboyant Leheriya – Rajasthan’s Unique Craft Perfect For Your Holi Wardrobe 

With its mesmerizing, wave like patterns in a burst of colors, Leheriya is a perennial crowd pleaser. An exquisite craft born in the desert state of Rajasthan, Leheriya is named after the Hindi word for ‘waves,’ ‘leher.’

‘Leher’ or ‘waves’ found in the sand inspires the design vocabulary of Leheriya
Picture credits: Dastkari Haat Samiti

Made using a precise, time-intensive resist tie dyeing technique, Leheriya is the go-to textile on festivals like Holi, rakshabandhan & Teej. It makes for flamboyant sarees you could dress up to any degree, dupattas that liven up the simplest of kurtas or as turbans that add a spot of color to the men’s wardrobe.

Leheriya sarees to cherish

In its new translations Leheriya is more democratic, making the craft available to all but at one time it was used mostly as an identity marker for several communities in Rajasthan. It was worn as head-dresses called ‘pagdi’ or ‘safa’ by traveling merchants; as ‘odhnis’ worn by women, different types of Leheriya signified important moments in life, like the birth of a child or marriage.  

Leheriya was once patronised by the royalty of Rajasthan

Unique to Rajasthan, Leheriya is made by rolling the base fabric (usually cotton) diagonally from one end to the opposite selvedge.

Each royal family in Rajasthan had a staple Leheriya design, and the saafa continues to hold fort as an integral part of Rajasthani attire
PC: Dastkari Haat Samiti

Certain portions are resisted by lightly binding threads at regular intervals. First a wooden stand, called a ’muddha’ is used to twist the cloth tightly and then knots are tied using a special tool called a ‘khilli.’ The process of actual knotting requires skilled hands where the artisan ties the knots at regular intervals and parallel to each other to achieve the distinctive wave design in the final product.

The fabric is folded diagonally and rolled like a fan before the knotting process begins
PC: Dastkari Haat Samiti

The dyes used are usually organic colors like indigo, pomegranate peels and madder roots and several rounds with resists are needed to achieve the various colors.  

Types of Leheriya patterns vary by the distance two lines of knots (each dyed a different color!) Another type of Leheriya is the Mothra – a criss-cross pattern made by folding and knotting the same fabric in opposite directions.  

Pair these kurtas with leheriyas for joyful celebrations

Flamboyant, exquisite and each one a unique design, Leheriya is perfect for joyful celebrations like holi. Explore Jaypore’s newest offering of Leheriya sarees and pick the ones that catch your eye.

Shop our Holi special range here: JAYPORE

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