GI Certified Kasargod Sarees ( GI REGN NO. 170 ) :

Kasaragod district is a small town situated in the Malabar Region of Kerala–God’s Own Country, India. The origin of the handloom weaving of Kasaragod Sarees is traced back to the 18th century AD. The history states that the weaving community, the Shaliya (or the Chaliya/ Saliya), has been migrated from East Karavali cost of the present Karnataka State en route Tamil Nadu. It is widely believed that another group of Padmashaliyas reached the present Kasaragod taluk from Mysore and surrounding regions of the present Karnataka. Traditional accounts identify fourteen settlements of this community from Pattuvam in Kannur to Panambur in Mangalore.

The unique colour combination is the main speciality of the Sarees produced in Kasaragod. The dye which is predominantly used for dyeing the yarn meant for Kasaragod Saree is Vat dyes. The vat dyes are preferred by the manufacturer of Kasaragod sarees over all other groups of available dyes is due to their excellent colour fastness properties. These dyes are the fastest dyes available for dyeing cellulosic fibres. Therefore, the Kasaragod Sarees are famous for their lustre and colour fastness due to the best dyeing quality and techniques.

These traditional ethnic sarees are especially treasured and worn by every Keralite during any traditional occasions and are known for ‘quality, ‘colour pattern on borders’, ‘durability’ and ‘traditional designs’. Kasaragod sarees are best known for cotton sarees of fine count like 60s, 80s, and 100s. It is said that due to humid conditions these sarees have become popular. The main body of the saree is either plain or with woven small or medium woven stripes and checks patterns in tie & dye technique to obtain solid attractive borders, in addition to it extra weft butta is also sometimes woven to enhance the charm to the saree. The pallu is made with jacquard and dobby sometimes.

It is not a big brand that adorns the malls and big showrooms. But it is known for the tradition of 75 years that won the Kasargod Sarees the geographical indication (GI) tag in 2008 as also many committed buyers over the years. The glorious days of the hand-woven Kasaragod sari may be over but it has withstood the challenges of time and is still popular among the people.