Festivals, Dances, Theatre, Literature, Art in News

Handloom in news: Patan Patola


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Patan Patola

Mains level: Not Much


At the G20 summit, Prime Minister gifted traditional artworks from Gujarat- the ‘Patan Patola’ scarf to his Italian counterpart Giorgia Meloni.

What is Patan Patola?

  • The ancient art of double ikat or Patola woven in pure silk dates back to the 11th century.
  • The Patola fabrics bear an equal intensity of colours and design on both sides.
  • This peculiar quality has its origins in an intricate and difficult technique of dyeing or knot dyeing, known as ‘bandhani’, on the warp and weft separately before weaving.

How is it woven?


  • Patola is woven on primitive hand-operated harness looms made out of rosewood and bamboo strips. The loom lies on a slant.
  • The other commonly worn Patola is the Rajkot Patola, woven on a flat loom.
  • The process involves warp and weft silk threads that are tied with cotton thread on portions marked with the proposed design.
  • This tied portion then remains unexposed to colours while dyeing, which is followed by tying, untying, redyeing and dyeing in different shades.
  • Single and primary colours are applied one after another as mixed shades develop by overlapping. This makes the design stand out.

Who weaves it?

  • The last surviving family into Patola weaving is the Salvi family in Patan.
  • From the oldest 70-year-old Rohit to the youngest 37-year-old Savan, the entire nine member-family of five men and four women is engaged with this art form.
  • The Salvi family shared that before World War II, Indonesia was the major buyer of Patolas.
  • Legend has it that King Kumarpal of the Solanki dynasty invited some 700 families of Patola weavers from Jalna (Maharashtra) to settle in Patan in North Gujarat, and the Salvis are among them.
  • The family has also been honoured with several national awards.

How costly it is?

  • While possessing and wearing a Patola is considered a matter of pride, the fabric has largely remained inaccessible to common people because of its high price.
  • The base price of a Patola saree in the Patan weave starts from Rs 1.5 lakh up and can go up to Rs 6 lakh.
  • A typical 46-inch dupatta or scarf sells in the range of Rs 80,000, depending on the intricacy of the design.


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