It is that time of the year when the city of Chennai gets all decked up for the famed Carnatic music season, which attracts both locals and visitors from across the country and even abroad.

The ‘season’, as it is fondly called by classical music patrons, is not just about musical notes and ragas. Even as Kalyani and Kharaharapriya take centerstage, there is a lot of interest around food and fashion too. We will leave the food connoisseurs to dissect the delicacies served in the sabhacanteens and talk about what we know best: the sarees during the winter music season.

Kutcheris and Kanjivaram sarees

For ages, there has been an undeniable connection between Carnatic music and silk sarees. Take a quick glance at what people are wearing at concert halls and you’ll know what we’re talking about.

Kanjivaram silk with diamond studs was an unwritten dress code popularised by musical legends like M.S. Subbulakshmi, M.L. Vasanthakumariand D.K. Pattammal. This trend continues till date with singers like Sudha Raghunathanand Aruna Sairam opting for rich korvai sarees with traditional jhumkis and temple jewellery. 

  Off the stage too, the Kanjivarams have people’s vote. As women, young and old, go concert-hopping from one auditorium to the other, you can see the time-tested Kanjivarams swaying in style. With the nip in the air, silks are a good choice, as they keep the wearer warm, comfortable and cosy. 

In the last few years, retro patterns of checks, maanga, vairaoosi, andpaalumpazhamumhave been making their presence felt during the music season.Of course, peacock motifs, buttas and temple borders never seem to go out of favour.

Teamed with trendy blouses and terracotta jewellery, these traditional pattu sarees create quite an impression! This year, Kanjivaram weaves are also sporting contemporary designs, like bold stripes and geometric patterns. 

Other fabrics

Apart from Kanjivaram silk, other silk varieties like Tussar, Benaras, Ikkat and Uppada are alsodoing the rounds during the Margazhi season. And it is not just a swirl of silk at the kutcheris, as fabrics like silk-cotton, jute-cottonand linen tooare spotted among the concert-goers. 

Winter trends

Thanks tothe slight dip in temperature, women are encouraged to experiment with thicker varieties of cotton, paired with elbow-length or high-neck blouses. Not to mention the gorgeous shawl with subtle embroidery, draped stylishly over the saree,giving the overall ensemble an elegant touch!

 When it comes to the colour palette, peacock blue, earthy red, anddeep purple stand out for sure. And what better time than now to flaunt the black sarees!

 Breaking away from the winter thumb-ruleof dark colours are bright orange, turmeric yellow, and light pink. Solid colours apart, kalamkari prints and mural painted sarees are also a big hit, especially among the younger crowd.

So, what are you waiting for? Pull out your lovely sarees from the closet and step out in them in style. Play around, mix and match, and have a lot fun this winter!