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In Kasargod the Weavers/ craftsmen follows even today the traditional way of making of the saree all done by hand. Cotton yarns are immersed in the soap oil for about 45minutes to 1 hour to increase the dye absorbability. The yarns are boiled in the boiler with water and soda ash for about 24 hours, then washed and dried. It is taken for the colouring process that is usually done with vat dyes, caustic soda and hydro sulphite.
After colouring/ dyeing the yarns are spread on the horizontal pole for about 1-2 days completely under shade for drying and oxidation to take place. After the yarns are completely dried it is wound by the Charaka equipment to the bobbins/ pirns. The bobbins are arranged on the creels as per the pattern with colour combinations to be made and wound on the warping frames.
Each yarn is counted and each set is revolved around the axis of the warping frame as per the pattern to be made. The warp is made for about 33 saree, where each saree of 5.5 meters is separated and the pallu part of the saree of about 60-70 cms is separated, tied and dyed as per the combinations matching to it.
After drying and oxidation the yarns are spread on the looms through the combs with long nails with minimum of five people for setting. For every half meter of yarn on the loom, starch is applied with a palm fiber brush that gives a zero finish to the saree. Traditionally the starch of Tapioca was generally preferred, due to non-availability of the right quality starch. Nowdays it is generally made from rice flour or maida which is applied on the yarns in the loom. Therefore the saree’s doesn’t shrink that much after washing. The woven saree is then checked for quality and sent for packing.
Flow Chart of Making Process: