British Women in Sarees take Made in India Royal Heritage Walk to River Thames

British Women in Sarees take Made in India Royal Heritage Walk to River Thames

British Women in Sarees (BWIS), a diaspora outfit founded around the celebration of iconic Indian drapes from the different states of India, recently expanded to also include men in honour of International Men’s Day which falls on November 19.

Over the weekend, BWIS brought together over 100 British Indians from different corners of the UK to showcase the exclusive outfits and cultural nuances of their Indian heritage. From the folk tunes of West Bengal and bhangra beats of Punjab to dandia from Gujarat, the Made in India Royal Heritage Walk catwalk on the River Thames presented a kaleidoscope of colours and drapes.

Dr Dipti Jain, Chairperson of BWIS, who was part of the Bengal brigade, shared: “The uniqueness of the catwalk of royal weaves of India, from Punjab in the north to Kerala in the south, in all their full glory by the British Women in Sarees and their spouses – complete with props made by local artisans – truly brought India alive in the heart of London.

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“The excitement of the models from all walks of life was palpable as their hard work in showcasing their state was on full display, bringing alive our mitti ki khushboo (fragrance of India) in Great Britain.”

In tune with the concept of being vocal for Indian handicrafts and handwoven traditions, the prizes presented to the most outstanding groups also reflected traditional Indian weaves from different parts of the country.

BWIS has been created to celebrate the weaves and crafts of India and has been celebrating the saree at events such as the Royal Ascot races and a unique Saree Walkathon to celebrate India’s National Handloom Day in August. The idea is to evocatively merge the idea of promoting Indian arts and handicrafts by bringing together the diaspora around fun elements of folk song and dance. More recently, the group organised the traditional sindoor khela of West Bengal for the London Mayor’s Diwali on the Square.

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