Kankatala – Queen of Sarees unveiled its first store in Hyderabad with a collection inspired by the Telugu-speaking queens
A historical journey of handpicked weaves and drapes through 25 clusters across the country and three generations — sums up the legacy of Visakhapatnam-based sari house, Kankatala. And on their 75th year, they have given Hyderabadis something to look forward to as Kankatala — Queen of Sarees opened its first store in the city in Jubilee Hills.
“We dedicate our Hyderabad store to the beloved 16th Century queen, Rani Bhagmati,” says Anirudh Kankatala, third generation director of the brand whose grandfather, Appalaraju Kankatala, founded the sari house in 1943. Adding that they do indeed have a collection inspired by the queen, Anirudh says, “She (Bhagmati) was in love with the Mughal emperor and her manner of dressing was different. She has been draped in the classic Banarasi, a weave older than history and tradition, with heavy antique zari work.”
A perfect foil for the opulence of the new collection is this two-storey store that spans around 5,000 sq ft and has pastel walls and minimalist interiors. Grandeur and royalty are the elements used for their latest collection, where they have re-imagined the dressing styles of queens from the Telugu speaking bastion and created ensembles inspired by their individualistic dressing style. The thematic collection, titled Queens of Andhra, revolves around other royalties like Rani Rudramma Devi, Queen Nayakuralu Nagamma, Rani Akkadevi, Rani Chandramani Devi and Maharani Adi Laxmi Devamma. One can expect floral motifs on Banarasi weaves, besides jaal jamdani work on the sari and Mughal inspiration in the use of intricate meenakari detailing. Their handpicked range of Patan Patolas, Paithanis, Kanjivarams, Banaras, Khadis, Kotas, linens, Organzas, Gadwals, Uppadas and Ikats that’s on offer — leave you spoilt for choice. Apart from indigenous weaves, the store also has an exclusive collection of saris curated from designers like Satya Paul, Ereena by Jyoti Reddy, Pradeep Pillai and Anavila Mishra’s eco-friendly saris in handcrafted linen. Do note, this label has been sported by the likes of Sonam K Ahuja, Kiran Rao and Kajol.
Meticulous curation and attention to detail is what makes Kankatala so exclusive. “We have a khadi (sari), which took two weavers 23 months to make. Another organza sari (which depicts the narrative of Ramayana) took 14 months and costs around `4 lakh,” says Anirudh.
Rs.2,000 to 6 Lakh.