During Diwali, one is supposed to wear new clothes to bring luck in the coming year. Some new gold jewelry doesn’t help either.
Since I have a collection of sarees to choose from, I picked a bright orange and deep purple silk, that I believe is from Mysore.
I bought the saree from Kalyan Silks, in Ernakalam, Kerala. Kalyan Silks is one of many sari chain stores in India, but I believe they demonstrated the most quality and diverse selection.
Kalyan was recommended to me by Costa Gama homestay, a Keralan accomodation run by a very nice family. Their family took me in and recommended very authentic Keralan (and Indian) experiences. They even helped interpret my measurements with a tailor.
I was treated like one of their family, and really valued their hospitality.
For Diwali, saris with bright colors are usually worn, like pink, orange, red or yellow. Diwali is about celebrating the goddess of luck and wealth, Lakshmi and extinguishing darkness inside and out.
The holiday also celebrates the return of Ram from exile in the Ramayana tale.
Many lights, or diya lamps are lit to welcome Laksmi into the home.
The orange and purple sari was perfect for the bright occasion, especially since I initially was attracted to the pallu of this saree:
The pallu is the loose end of the sari.
During my trip in India, I shopped at local vendors and department store sari places. I observed the sari bags that women around town carried like a purse, and decided to seek the stores out.
I still have many of those cloth bags too.