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    Mithila showcases the best of traditional Indian saris

    Set in the ground floor of her home in a quite by-lane of Shastri Nagar, is Mythili Ashok’s sari store, Mithila. Carefully hand-picked from various pockets of rural India, the pieces reflect the personal style of Ashok — understated and elegant. Various craft traditions of India find place on her shelves, from the best of Kanjeevaram silks to stunning Chanderis, apart from a fine collection of Patolas, Ikkats, Shiboris, tussars and even regular chiffons block printed in Benaras. The latest addition to the collection are Benarasi pieces, a result of her recent visit to the city.
    Formerly a homemaker, Ashok’s new store is the product of her years of passionate research into saris for her own closet. “I am such a shopaholic and I’ve learnt so much over the years shopping for myself, finding the most remote villages with the best to offer, and little hole in the wall shops that you’d not even think to step into,” Ashok reveals, adding, “Even before I set up the store, people would always contact me to source the ensembles of brides and their families.” Working directly with weavers, sometime giving them her own designs, sometimes picking up rare pieces that strike her fancy, she is an extensive traveler and making trips to different parts of the country every month.

    Woven wonders
    She first shows us a chic chiffon number in white with red and pink block prints from Benaras, before moving on to a gorgeous English rose Chanderi, well complemented by a thick but dull gold zari border. Kota saris occupy a whole set of racks and we spotted a few leheriyas that were quite beautiful, one being a deep red, fuchsia and white piece. Also expect a range of khadi drapes. One we took a liking to was a simple parrot green sari with a contrasting vermilion border. Ashok also stocks a selection of Kashmiri and Kutchi stoles and shawls, with the Kutchi ones sourced from Bhujodi. Rs.1,000 upwards. At Shastri Nagar. Details: 26763128

    RR

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