The Kanjeevaram Saree from South India is one of the finest silk sarees there is. At nine meters it is longer than usual saris. Heavy silk background is dotted with embroidery made with real gold or silver. Silken thread may also be used. The pallav, or the end thrown over the shoulder, and the borders are typically more elaborate and colorful than the rest of the sari. Kanjivarams used at weddings may have real gold woven into it throughout the entire saree. The weight of the heavy silk and embroidery adds up to create quite a bundle, which is probably why kanjeevarams are used for special occasions. They are passed from mother to daughter down the generations. The gift of a kanjeevaram is a gift that transcends time.
Bright blues, purples and greens, or vibrant reds, oranges or yellows have formed the traditional color palette. Recently, colors have been combined to create a blue-green that varies according to light, or a saree that is beige in daylight and golden under artificial light. Combinations have also changed traditional paisley motifs or tales of mythology in the embroidery.
Maintenance of kanjivarams require careful folding and wrapping after use. Machine wash is not recommended. If maintained properly, kanjeevarams can last a hundred years.