Warping: The yarn is bought by the weavers or given by the cooperative societies. It is dyed in desired colors and then sent for warping.
Reed making: The artisan communities make bamboo reed and denting of the reed. The reed setup is a vital part of the loom that controls the way the threads are lifted.
Heald making: After the reed is made, silk yarn is twisted to make leases and dented in the slots of the reed. Once the denting is done, 8 bamboo rodsare positioned for the 4 shafts and healds are tied by threading through the warp ends. Plucking each warp end and looping the heald eye around it from both the face and back makes the eyes of the healds.
Piecing: Piecing is a process where the existing ends on the reed-heald setup is joined with the ends from the new warp by twisting. This pre-weaving process is undertaken by older women.
Adding leases: Once the piecing is done, the weaver unrolls the warp out on street on stilts to insert lease rods and to mark out the length of each saree. The leases are inserted and marking is done using a bamboo stick and damp kumkum. The warp is then rolled on the metal cylinder that acts as the warp beam. The setup is then taken indoors to be fitted onto the loom.
The loom: The loom used for silk saree weaving is a raised-pit loom. A cement seat is constructed for sitting and the local wood craftsman makes all the parts of the loom and assembles it. Teak wood is used to make looms. The warp beam is fixed in its position on the loom and the warp stretched out. The border pattern warp ends are hung using vertical nylon threads and connected to the patterning box on top.
Winding weft: Weft yarn is wound on a metal cylinder from the hank and allowed to soak for two hours. Soaking the weft yarn ensures dense packing of weft and a smooth finish. The weft yarn is wound as the weaving progresses. This is done mostly at home by family members in their free time.
Making saree: The body of the saree is woven in a plain weave and the cross border is woven in a rib weave. The saree is soaked in water overnight and woven wet. This prevents the saree from coiling on itself or tangling. After every few inches of weaving, a solution of gum Arabic is applied to the saree to stiffen it.
Folding: Once the sari is made beam is removed and the kept in sunlight for a while to stiffen the starch and gum. Once dried, the saree is folded in a set pattern. It takes two people to do this task. It is usually the husband and wife who do this and tie it. The sarees are then stacked and covered with fabric, ready to be taken to the cooperative or private dealer.