‪#‎100sareepact‬ This is a Sambhalpuri Ikat, #2 on my son’s list (yes, he has one). I’m partial to ikats, and turquoise is one of my favourite colours. As a little girl, I played with yarn spindles and colour samples, overheard words like mercerized and affluent treatment… And turquoise! I loved the word, it sounded magical and mysterious, as beautiful as the colour.
When my son was a year old, I picked up a colour sample book that was lying around at my parents’. The toddler spent hours gazing at the colours and feeling the textures, just like I had. He was exposed to art on a daily basis thanks to picture books from publishers like Tara and Tulika and Karadi. He would accompany me on shopping expeditions – admiring the ikats, differentiating between Madhubanis and Kalamkaris, watching Gond and Phad artists at work.
Today was one such trip, with the kid coming along as I shopped for Bailou sarees. He helped me pick sarees with great enthusiasm, remarked that “ikats are fuzzy”, carried a massive pile of sarees while I waited my turn for the mirror, and told me what suited me, much to the amusement of all the lovely ladies around. All of them were generous with smiles and compliments, telling him it was really nice to see him helping his Ma.
The kid learnt an important lesson (something I’ve been telling him forever, but one learns best from life and experience) – He was able to bring a smile to so many, just by being kind and helpful. And he ended up feeling good and having a wonderful time himself. The sort of happiness an Olympiad medal or an expensive gift doesn’t give him.

Back at home, thanks to the 100sareepact, I saw an update that said ”Bailou are in town for the weekend at Rain tree. I managed some really get some pretty sarees as always. At the store a lady brought her little son with her to shop for sarees. It was very sweet to see a lil boy telling his mother what suits her and happily picking few saris for her. ( i would like to add the boy has impeccable taste)”
This was a lady I’d never met before, who went out of the way to help me make my choices when I was thoroughly and utterly confused. I wouldn’t have known her name but for the 100sareepact. Thank you, Saina Jayapal. I’m so glad we met.

One of those days when I’ve been enveloped in kindness. I’ll remember the feeling whenever I wear this saree.

with Ally Matthan Anju Maudgal Kadam Monika Manchanda Simran Dhaliwal Rajalakshmi Swaminathan

Tagging Manisha BhattacharyaSatarupa Sen BhattacharyaJash Sen,Swati Roy and all ye saree lovers – Join the #100sareepact. Share a saree and a story! Repeats allowed, old pics allowed, anything goes!