Maheshwari Sarees and Fabric
Handloom weavers at Maheshwar keep alive the art of hand weaving fabric and saree. Maheshwar has been a centre of handloom weaving since the 5th century. It is the home to one of India’s finest hand loom fabric traditions and a centre for weaving colourful Maheshwari saree and fabric.
The silk sarees and cotton saris are woven with distinctive designs involving stripes, checks and floral borders. The hand looms also make fabric material used for making kurtas and other clothings. Maheshwar sarees and fabric is registered in GI registry of India (Geographical Indications Registry).
It is said that Ahilyadevi Holkar, the queen, herself designed the first saree produced. She encouraged and supported weavers, craftspersons and artisans from Malwa and other regions to take up weaving. These sarees date back to 18th century. In the initial period, the sarees were made of pure silk. However, in later years, blending of cotton and silk became quite common to produce sarees and other forms of clothing. These sarees are exquisite and a piece of art.
Today there are several hundred handloom weavers (individuals, societies and business enterprises) at Maheshwar who are producing beautifully crafted sarees and fabric. These handlooms do not require any significant investment. In fact, these handlooms provide gainful employment to thousands of weavers and their families. Another important role of the handloom weavers is that they keep this beautiful tradition of hand weaving alive.
In the late eighteenth century, Maheshwar served as the capital of queen Rajmata Ahilya Devi Holkar. She embellished the city with many buildings and public works, and it is home to her palace, as well as numerous temples, a fort, and riverfront ghats (broad stone steps which step down to the river). Maheshwar is a culturally prosperous town and its importance is described in Puranas and through history. It is a religious town.
Festivals of Maheshwar
Maheshwar is full of festivals and celebrations, some are: Nag Panchami, Gudi Padava, Teez (New year celebrations according to the Hindu calendar), All Mondays of Shravan month, (DOLA of Kashivishwnath on last Monday, bhang is served as prasad of Shiva), Mahashivratri, Samoti Amavas, and all other Indian festivals. Maheshwar also has the temple of Goddess Vindhyavasini Bhavani, one of the 24 Shaktipeeths of Goddess Parvati. (source : Wikipedia)