Artificial silk, as the name suggests, is a fabric that is made to look and feel like silk, albeit by using synthetic fibers. It is one of the most popular fabrics used in the creation of affordable yet fashionable ethnic and Indo-Western garments, especially for women. It is also known as the silk rayon fabric as it is created using rayon fibers.
First developed in the 1890s, there were many shortcomings in it initially that have been overcome over the decades and the current lustrous quality and high durability of the artificial silk fabric is one of the biggest reasons for its popularity.
Artificial silk was developed with the aim to reduce the high production costs that are generally incurred with pure silk fabric. However, the luxurious look and feel of silk has been retained in artificial silk, making it appealing to a wider number of people across the globe. There is no dearth in the number of garments that can be produced using artificial silk, also known as Art Silk.
Versatile than pure silk
The beauty of Art Silk is that in contrast to pure silk, it flows much better and is more malleable. Women prefer it because it opens up a lot of styling and drape options, which is not really a characteristic of pure silk. One of the other testified bonuses of Art Silk is its ability to emulate specific regional forms of silk such as Ghichcha, Matka, Chanderi, Bhagalpuri and more. Correspondingly, the kind of embroidery and embellishments that can be displayed on the garment also varies, thus offering women a lot of diversity in this one type.
Art silk sarees
Artificial silk sarees are one of the highest selling ethnic wear items in the industry. The fabric gives a lot of leeway in terms of fabric printing as well as embroidery. Art Silk brocade sarees are sought out as preferable ethnic party wear. The splendor that is reflected in the brocading of the saree along with heavy embellishments such as sequin work, gold zari work and patch work, among others, is equivalent to that of pure silk sarees.
Art Silk sarees also make for excellent formal wear, especially to the work place, as they are trendy yet reasonably priced. Women prefer this saree type to wear to the office as the current trend is to showcase a lot of contemporary motifs such as geometric patterns, artsy designs and modern interpretations of traditional art forms. Art Silk sarees in contrasting brilliant combinations of colors are very popular among the younger demographics.
Contrasts like orange and hot pink on a base of grey and black brocade or pink, green and blue designs on a black base are some of the modish contrasts that modern Art Silk sarees feature, although on a darker background to tie the whole look together.
Salwar suits and lehenga cholis
Besides heavy usage in sarees, artificial silk fabrics have also been used to create gorgeous lehenga cholis and salwar kameez sets. Exemplifying the malleability of the fabric, art silk chaniya cholis and suit sets can be found in several silhouettes and styles. Ideal for wearing to parties, to the office, to any special occasion or even a religious festival, these items are amongst the most popular wardrobe choices for women of all ages.
Art Silk has also been used to create Indo-Western clothing items such as long skirts, kurtis, asymmetric pants and more, thus making this fabric diverse. It has also been used to create accessories such as hand bags. As the base material is Art Silk, the bag can be either embroidered or printed upon, depending on the interpretation of the designer. Its diverse usage is also a testament to this fabric’s popularity and versatility.
The art silk ensemble can be accessorized depending on whether one is wearing an artificial silk lehenga choli, saree or salwar kameez and depending on the occasion for which the outfit is being worn.
For instance, party wear artificial silk sarees and lehenga cholis can be styled with statement pieces for the ears and neck. This can either be colorful gemstone jewelry or gold jewelry depending upon the embellishments on the garment. Since Art Silk in and of itself is a modern fabric and not a traditional one, contemporary motifs such as abstract shapes go very well with these outfits.
Office wear art-silk outfits can be paired with heavy beaded jewelry. Pendants in semi-precious stones are also a great accessory to such ensembles. The whole idea is to play on the color combination of the garment and use heavy pieces to enhance the overall look.
Art Silk handbags in the hobo style, can be used to jazz up a casual Indo-Western outfit such as dhoti pants and kurtis or ethnic-inspired tunics and leggings. Art Silk clutches can be used to offset party wear outfits in the same material.