Assam Muga Silk Saree
Photo Curtsey: Adi Mohini Mohan Kanjilal
Assam is a state in the north-east of India. Famous for its lash green tea garden and Kaziranga forest, the den of one horn rhino.
Muga Silk, which is mainly produced by Garo community of Assam, is obtained from semi-domesticated multivoltine silkworm. These silkworms feed on the leaves of Som and Soalu plants and the silk produced from them is known for its glossy texture, durability and natural yellowish-golden tint.
A silk farmer requires access to at least an acre of land if he has to cultivate about 400 grams of Muga Silk. 1000 cocoons can generate about 125 grams of silk but a single saree requires at least 1000 grams of silk. The time taken to weave a single Muga Silk Saree is roughly two months, from rearing the silkworm to obtaining the finished product. The actual weaving process takes about one week to 10 days to complete.
The golden colour and shine of the fabric is one of the most unique features of Muga Silk. The shine of the fabric is said to improve after each wash making it a product that will last your lifetime.
A golden-yellow base colour is the main selling point of the silk. Additional colours are added to make the product more attractive. Traditional motifs that are used on the fabric include Jappi, Miri, Gos, Butta (Tree) and Kabutar (Pigeons). These motifs are geometrical in shape and have not changed over the years.