Nivi, Koli, Surguja, Meher – just some of the innumerable species of drapes your grandmother would probably know by the back of her hand. The sari is often viewed as cumbersome, held together by an army of pesky safety pins and monumental layers. On the contrary, it happens to be the most versatile garment, and forgiving, with the ability to suit women of any age or silhouette. “I grew up in Montreal, and I remember the first present I ever asked for from my nani was a sari; at age five I designed my first sari with a rainbow blouse in beautiful mashru with a dyed chiffon dupatta,” recalls Malika Verma Kashyap.
Kashyap, founder of digital publication Border & Fall, has carefully curated a group of members to be a part of The Sari Project, with the aim of creating 84 short films, as well as three independent films to engage with the dialogue of the sari. In a world replete with fast-fashion, high-street brands and ever-changing trends, she sensed it was a critical time for a perception shift with regards to the garment. It’s been crowd funded successfully via Kickstarter, and Kashyap couldn’t be more grateful of her dream team. “A project like this is just about passion, there’s no revenue associated with it at this stage, it’s a labour of love.”
The short films will be created by Pooja Kaul, a filmmaker with an alternative perspective; Q, who has been personally documenting the sari over the past decade; and American photographer Bon Duke. “It was great to have the idea validated by somebody who has no ties to India or the sari but