Gollabhama sarees are globally famous, and even have the Geographical Indication (GI) tag. Siddipet, a district in the state of Telangana in Indian Continent is known for providing a type of cotton sarees. These sarees are special because of the amazing motifs and inlay figure work in them. This particular type of saree derives its name from the unique motifs that it carries. The figure work is inspired by the Gollabhama that mean the milkmaids in the folk language. Cattle’s rearing was a known profession and the community practising it was called Golla. The sight of the women of this community carrying pots of milk and curd on their heads (milkmaid) wearing bright skirts and veils has been captured in these sarees. That is how it gets its name “Gollabhama”. The weavers articulate the image of the Gollabhamas on cotton as well as silk cloth in their looms. The sarees are special in a way as these images are not printed or embroidered instead flawlessly woven on the pallu of the saree. They are initially drawn on a graph and later woven in a pattern using 80-100 threads. These threads define the specific position where the warp is raised and coloured threads are inserted. While creating these motifs, the weaver passes coloured threads (for each motif) through the warp to achieve the resulting design. The weavers replicate these silhouettes to create alluring designs on their looms. The saree is often in a single colour dotted with small Gollabhama butas throughout the fabric, while the larger intricate motifs are showcased on the border and/or pallu (end-piece).
The art of Gollabhama Sarees is on the verge of collapse. The weavers express their concern for the coming generation of the country who would just be able to see this art in the pictures as in the next 10 years no one would have the knowledge to preserve it.
These are really light and soft cotton sarees.