Beauty of Bengal Cotton
Why is Bengal Cotton (Bangla Tant) so popular? The simple answer most people will give is that Bengal Cotton is stylish and comfortable. That is the secret to the popularity and wide adoption of this fabric. Bengal Cotton is also very light. It appropriately adapts with the weather in Bengal. The weather in Bengal is generally hot and humid. Some of the characteristics of Bengal Cotton like comfort ability, absorbency, proper retention of colors, printability, good strength, drapes easily and fashionably – make it an ideal choice as a fabric for most apparels. The fashion applications of the Bengal Cotton are wide. Whenever we think of a traditional Bengali lady we think of a beautiful woman draped in a Bengali saree. An Indian saree is the most traditional use of Bengal Cotton. The evolution of style and the progress of fashion have brought in Bengal Cotton for use in other apparels. Bengal Cotton is now used for salwar, kameez, churidars, kurtas, kurtis, patialas, and other adaptations which are the contemporary fashion trends.
Outside style and comfort, Bengal cotton can be very colorful and gorgeous. Bengal Cotton can match the mood and occasion – whether it is a sober or dignified look we are aspiring or a frivolous mood we are seeking. The tradition of handloom weaving is an ancient art of Bengal. Depending on where they originated from we get different types of Bengal Cotton – the normal Bengal Cotton which is not only popular but are characterized by bright colors and heavy borders; the Dhakai Jamdani originating in the capital city of erstwhile East of Bengal are hand woven in fine, transparent, and light texture; the Dhonekhali coming from the Hoogly district where the borders are bright and in sharp contrast looking very bright in appearance; the Shantipuri originating in Nadia district which appears fine and classy; and finally the Tangail variety which also originates in Bangladesh and is known for its multi-colors and butti designs, floral patterns, or other form of modern art as embellishments on the fabric.
The Bengal Cotton also has a rich tradition. They were nurtured under royal guidance and reached maximum potential in the Mughal era. They also survived the British onslaught who tried to destroy this traditional art and the weaver community in order to protect the textile industry of Manchester. The departure of the British on Indian independence put a stop to this and this age old craft was safely preserved and the weavers rehabilitated on either side of the border. The craftsmen skillfully yet gently weave the cotton to thread which is woven to Bengal Cotton fabric. Two shuttles are used for this purpose. Traditionally, handlooms were used by the skillful weavers. These have today been largely replaced by power looms to weave the Bengal Cotton fabric.
Bengal Cotton is generally characterized by a thick border and is woven using a variety of floral, paisley, and artistic motifs. Different motifs may include floral elements (different flowers), solar elements (different forms of the moon) and even current and modern art. Bengal Cotton generally comes with colorful design and comes with a heavy border as they are subjected to more wear and tea