Hailing from the town Ilkal in Bagalkot district of Karnataka, this weaves most unique feature is that it combines 3 different yarns: cotton on the body, art silk on the border, and pure silk on the pallu. This handloom comes from the glorious history of weaving culture: the town Ilkhal was an ancient weaving center back in 8th century AD. A distinction in the making of this handloom is the way the pure silk pallu is weaved separately and attached to the body warp by interlocking series of loops, locally known as the Tope Teni technique. This technique is unique to the Ilkhal, and also increases the length of the saree to 7 or 8 meters. The form of embroidery used in the Ikhal sarees is Kasuti which has traditional patterns like palanquins, elephants, and lotuses.
Like many other weavers, Ilkhal too is essentially a household enterprise involving the active participation of female members. It tends to take about 7 days to weave one sari with the help of the handloom. The beautiful, distinct patterns on the pallus and the feminine borders make this a must-have in south Indian women’s closets.