Pochampally is located in Andhra Pradesh, India, is well-known for its Pochampally brand of fabrics, being cotton, silk or a combination of the two. Pochampally cottons are woven by the ikkat technique. Ikat, or Ikkat, is a dyeing technique wherein bindings or substances resisting dye penetration are applied over the fibres in pre-determined patterns and then the threads are dyed. Alteration of bindings and using more than one colour for dyeing produces multi-coloured thread effect. Removal of the bindings and the subsequent weaving of the threads would form the desired pattern woven in the fabric. The determining characteristic of ikat is the dyeing of patterns, by means of bindings, on the threads prior to the weaving of the fabric. More the precision in the application of the resist bindings, finer would be the pattern formed. Ikkat is classified into single-ikkat and double-ikat styles. Pochampally cottons come in a wide range of colours and with unique patterns. The artistic excellence of ikat prints can be gauged from its traditional motifs of flowers, dancing girl, creepers, leafs, parrot, animals, birds, mythological characters and geometrical patterns. Most of the ikkat printed salwar kameez and sarees have repeated geometrical patterns of diamonds (rattan chowk), circles, squares, lines etc.
Unnati has a unique range of fusion salwar kameez where trending designs, patterns and colours have been incorporated in traditional styles of fabric making, and available in retail and wholesale. Examples of offerings are provided. The black and light grey with green Pochampally cotton salwar kameez has alternate black and light grey horizontal bands with zari embroidered buttis and a green patch border on the kameez. The plain green cotton salwar is a fitting contrast. The green silk chunni has a white floral embroidered border and black horizontal stripes on it. This pleasant piece would do for office, festivals, social events and even casual outings.
The Ikkat technique involves applying bindings which resist dye penetration to the threads in pre-determined patterns and then dyeing the threads. These threads are then woven to produce the desired pattern. When several colours are used, the dyeing process on the threads is repeated for each of the colours chosen. Then the fabric is woven with the multi-coloured threads into the pattern. Within the ikkat style of dyeing are variants of single-ikkat and double-ikkat. The tie-dye method is quite the reverse of the Ikkat style of dyeing. Here the threads are first woven and the resist bindings then applied to the fabric before dyeing it. The painstaking efforts of the weavers in maintaining the purity of dyeing and weaving, contribute largely to the uniqueness and pleasing appearance of the dress. Current trends see Pochampally cotton dresses with traditional designs, zari borders and elegant dupatta – a must-buy for festivals, traditional functions and even corporate wear.