Understanding the Rich Legacy of Paithani Silk Sarees

Paithani silk sarees contribute significantly to India’s handloom and textile industry. Popularly known as the Queen of Sarees in Maharashtra, these elegant silk sarees possess an unmatched aristocratic richness and charm. A special manual weaving process, striking motifs, and fabulous artwork set a paithani saree apart from its counterparts.

At Odhni, we have a beautiful collection of pure paithani sarees. But before you buy one, knowing its rich legacy is essential to understand its true worth. In this blog, we will discuss a paithani silk saree’s historical significance and mythological connection and learn about the various motifs that provide it with its unique charm.

Goddess Parvati & Paithani Silk Saree

As per legends, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati play a significant role in the creation of a paithani silk saree. It is said that when Goddess Parvati saw the enchanting paithani saree look on the women at Lord Indra’s court, she was mesmerised. But since the saree was created by the Gods, she could not wear it. That’s when she decided to hand-weave the saree for herself. 

She dyed the silk in vibrant colours, used real gold and silver to weave a beautiful design, and poured all her dedication into making it. When Lord Shiva saw her work, he was left impressed by her creative magnificence and blessed the saree, symbolising love and devotion. This also makes Goddess Parvati the first wearer of a handwoven paithani saree!

The History of Paithani Silk Saree

Getting its name from Paithan, the place of its origin, paithani silk saree dates back to 200 BC when the Satavahanas reigned over the region. Being true patrons of art and culture, they took a keen interest in paithani sarees and actively encouraged their weaving. But it was during the Maratha rule that these sarees reached the height of their popularity. 

They symbolised the opulence and grandeur of the Maratha aristocracy and became a token of pride for the women. Soon enough, wedding paithani sarees became a prized possession for every Maratha woman and began marking their presence on every special occasion. Worn by the Maratha elite, they became synonymous with high status, power, and prestige. 

During the Mughal era, paithani sarees were reinvented with the addition of new design elements. For instance, pheasant birds were added to the design, giving it a renewed look. Over time, new paithani saree colours and motifs emerged, including the flowering vine, which is believed to be the contribution of the Peshwas of Pune. 

While the paithani saree did see a dull phase during the British era, the Government of India later took an active interest in its revival, bringing back its glory. Now, paithani silk sarees are a beautiful reminder of a rich cultural heritage and are worn with pride, especially in Maharashtra.

The Motifs of a Paithani Silk Saree

As mentioned earlier, the uniqueness of a paithani silk saree lies in its intricate designs and motifs that draw inspiration from the surrounding nature and mythological legends. Some of the many motifs that you will see on a paithani saree include:

Elephant: It symbolises wisdom and strength and is also associated with good fortune, making it a popular design choice for special occasions.

Lotus: It is common knowledge that the lotus is considered a sacred flower in the Hindu tradition. It symbolises purity and is often linked with the divine.

Peacock: Not only is a peacock a beautiful design element that makes a paithani saree vibrant, but it is also a symbol of beauty and love.

Parrot: Similar to a peacock, parrots also symbolise beauty and love. They are also associated with wisdom and are popular in bridal paithani sarees.

Mango: This unique motif symbolises prosperity and abundance and is popular in paithani sarees bought for auspicious occasions.

Apart from the symbols mentioned above, various other motifs are used on paithani silk sarees to enhance their appearance and make them culturally relevant. Visit our store to choose from multiple exquisite options.

Paithani Silk Saree in Contemporary Times

While paithani silk sarees were originally woven with threads of silver and gold, they are now available in yarn and zari work. The modern-day weavers create splendid cotton ball designs, geometric patterns, and flower vines to enhance the saree's beauty. 

Even though an original paithani saree’s price is usually high, it is absolutely worth the regal elegance that the saree exudes. You can get in touch with us to learn more about our business or buy paithani silk sarees online. Our vast collection will leave you spoilt for choice.


Draping a paithani silk saree is an experience in itself! With a rich history dating back to the reign of the Marathas and a mythological connection with Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, this garment has immense cultural value.

 Its delicate details and use of gorgeous motifs like flower vines, peacocks, parrots, lotus, elephants, and more add to its captivating appearance and make it a must-have for special events.

If you want to add an original paithani saree to your wardrobe, explore our Odhni's saree collection. You can visit our website to buy a paithani saree online or drop by our store. Our paithani silk saree is sure to add a touch of elegance and luxury to your look!