No shirt of mine, not even my favourite pair of jeans, that magically knock off inches, make my heart stir even a little. But my sarees do.
Today I spent an afternoon shooting with Madhu & Pam. An emotion filled afternoon I must add. Dance, and it’s varied expressions, always leave me in awe. The discipline, the “sadhana ” that every artist must uphold toward their art is admirable. Years of training to perfect a step, a pose, to be able to depict an emotion to an audience. Today, Pam and I attempted to capture those emotions on camera.
Three women, going about doing what they love, in sarees. Today we were unified by our work and our saree stories. Madhu chose to wear a saree gifted to her by her beloved mother. A Mami saree, she called it, that she had set her heart on to wear for an award that she was to receive. She did and now it has become one of her favourite sarees. Pam wore a saree she recently bought. A colour she has never worn before, and yet, she looked like she belonged to it. Pam had told me, last week, how she found the colours in sarees “intoxicating ” when she first came to India. She has since embraced colour in her life. Both women wore Kanjeevarams.
We shared a lunch of bissi bele bhaath, hot cups of filter coffee, laughter, mithai and talked of the importance of staying curious. And even as the afternoon gave way to evening shadows, and more dancers came in to practice, or for a class, there was almost a reluctance to get up and leave.
To me, this is all that is precious. Of hoarding special moments. Of letting go. Of sitting together and talking about mothers and their love. Of spending time with like minded people who “get ” you. Of being able to be yourself. Of coming away having learned something new. Of wanting just a little bit more. Of knowing it will come.
I chose a soft, cotton saree to wear to the shoot. This is the first saree I bought for myself. I cannot remember the first shirt or the first pair of jeans I bought, but this saree I remember.
Today I added another story to it.
The buying of this saree made me feel different. It was a small, but memorable, step towards growing up. And now, twenty four years later, I’m all grown up.
I’m often asked what makes a saree special. It’s the emotions it holds in its folds. Always.
saree #56 ‪#‎100sareepact‬

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