# 54 Olakacche (Karnataka) – traditional

The drape demonstrated below was quite a mystery to me for sometime. Vibha commented nicely below and cleared up the mystery. I have backed up Vibha’s conclusions with a google search, I didn’t find much, but what I did, confirm that the drape is indeed an olakacche. Worn traditionally by Smartha Brahmins from Karnataka. However it is not worn very much anymore.

It is a nice simple drape that almost doesn’t look like a kaccha. But it is… its a hidden kaccha 🙂

A big thank you to Vibha and Rame for helping me figure this one out.



23 Comments Add yours

  1. Rame says:

    Me again. As per my knowledge, this is neither a Maharashtrian drape nor a Marwari drape. Marwaris are a subset community of Rajasthanis (who wear the Gujarati saree), so I would assume they also wear that saree type.

    No Maharastrian community or caste I am aware of wears such a saree either, so I am not sure where the makers of this video found inspiration. My guess is that they had merely heard a verbal description of the nauvari and tried to drape it on their own without verifiying.

    But who knows? This video has puzzled me for the longest time.

    1. Dasi says:

      Thanks so much for your input. 🙂 I think I saw one other video on youtube draped this way and they said it was Maharashtrian. That was along time ago. I haven’t found that video again.
      Also thank you for the info on Marwari being Rajasthani. I have a book on sari drapes done by a French woman and she puts the nauvari drape under marwari. But she does say its from Maharastra. So I think it must be a typo in the book. Anyway this is why I as so confused. You have helped me a lot. If I can’t find out what this drape is called I will name it myself and add it to the collection. 🙂

      1. Rame says:

        You’re probably correct about the book typo. Instead of “Marwari,” the writer must have intended “Marathi” (the native word for Maharashtrian) while classifying the nauvari.

        And good idea to name it yourself! Might as well add it 🙂 It is an interesting and unorthodox take on the kashta/kaccha saree.

      2. Dasi says:

        I was thinking the same thing. Its not exactly kaccha but its cool anyway 🙂

  2. Vibha says:

    Hi, I came across this blog and what you are doing is amazing. I have always loved draping myself in many ways. And I know which kind of people wear this 9 yard saree. There are 2 sects under Brahmin. Madhwa brahmin and Smartha brahmin. Madhwa brahmin typically wear 9 yard saree in a maharashtrian way. Smartha brahmin wear the 9 yard saree like in the video. In kannada it is called horakacche and olakacche which literally mean pleats on outside at the back and pleats from inside at the back respectively. But nowadays, Smartha brahmin wear a 6 yards in a normal drape so the tradition has died down. I had to ask my parents about this and that is when my father told me his grandmother who is a smartha brahmin used to wear this drape like in the video.

    1. Dasi says:

      Thank you so much for the information. Awesome! I will add this drape to my blog with a proper name and history 🙂

      1. Vibha says:

        Wow nice to see the update on that. Even I had googled on this drape found just one reference which said it is Smartha Brahmin style of wearing nauwari. Also I was looking for other 9 yards drape. Can you look for Lavani Dancers drape? I have been looking it for many years. If i get any info on that I would love to share. Also, in the nauwari has 4 to 6 drapes which I came across in a marathi channel Peshawri nauwari, Kashta nauwari, Brahmin nauwari, Lavani Nauwari, Shetkari nauwari. It would be adding these onto your blog. 🙂

      2. Dasi says:

        Ooo interesting. I will look up Lavani dancer drape and see what I can find. I will also look up the others. Thanks for the info 🙂

  3. Rama says:

    A good lavani saree video is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6XpwB6hzxjU. It is draped similarly to how the farmer (shetkari) woman in the yellow nauvari does.

    If you want a separate shetkari video, this is one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8BXX0ujmc4.

    A good Peshwai video is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XijYMjCKZYk.

    Hope this helps 🙂

    1. Dasi says:

      Thanks very much 🙂

      1. Rama says:

        Two more things:

        1) A Brahmin nauvari is the style of the video currently posted under nauvari (purple).

        2) The main difference in these various nauvaris is the front. For Brahmins, an “oncha” is taken (the extra material is tucked at waist) forming a border curve. The Peshwe were a Brahmin family who became royals, so they still took an oncha, but a more embellished one. Non-brahmins (such as farmers and dancers) do not take an oncha, instead opting for the back-to-front tucking that secures the legs.


  4. Vibha says:

    Thank you Rama for Lavani drape. It is just perfect.

    1. Rama says:

      Glad you liked it! I was excited when I found it, too

  5. Awesome.. I am a smartha brahmin..and was looking on web to see if there was a post on this. This kind of saree was worn during all auspicious occassions in the olden times. I remember seeing my grandmother and aunts wearing this kind during any homas or visitis of Gurus and Guru pooja times. I would like to post this link on my blog, with your permission.

    1. Dasi says:

      Yes of course 🙂 you may post this to your blog. I am glad you approve:-)

  6. manjula ramprasaf says:

    Is ola kacche 6 yards or 9 yards was looking fr the style
    Searched if smarthas also had style of their own..


    1. Dasi says:

      Olakacche is 9yards

  7. Rajendra Prabhu says:

    My daughter is getting married soon. We are GSB settled in Mumbai and are not used to wearing Nauvari saarees. But it is a customs to wear nauvari saaree during marriage. My daughter is stout and wearing nauvari will make her look fatter.
    Many have suggested to waer 6 yard sari in 9 yard style. Is there any way to drape 6 yard sari in 9 yard style and dont appear fat.
    I will appreciate your comments, reference videos, etc. and suggestions on this topic.


    1. Dasi says:

      That is an interesting idea to try Nuvari with a 6 yard saree I haven’t tried that yet but I will try it and let you know. Also if you have a very flowing, drapey, thin saree like Chiffon, Crape or Georgette that will also cut out a lot of bulk in the drape. There is also a really drapey, thin silk that is used for Kashmir printed sarees. I don’t know how easy it is to get a 9 yard sari in these materials and if you want real silk too that might be even harder. But you probably know better than I do about that.
      I will get back to you about draping soon 🙂 Thanks for the challenge!

  8. Swapnil P says:

    Hello all, I want to know how do Madhwas of Dharwad amd other north karanataka area drape nine yards? My cousin is married to a madhwa and settled in the US. Unfortunately there is no elderly person to guide her for draping nine yards.She now drapes as per Marathi brahmin style but i have seen madhva ladies in Mumbai mutths draping it in a little different style where feet are less visible.Is there a difference between the basic direction of where the pleats are folded?can anyone help since she wants to drape it for upcoming Ganeshutsav?

    1. jyoti YELAGALAWADI says:

      Another some Madhwa Brahmins from certain mattas do wear the olakache which shows less leg. Most wear Peshwai style. My parents side wear horakache- outside kacche ( Marathi way) while my husband’s side wears olakache 😊

  9. jyoti YELAGALAWADI says:

    In the olakacche saree worn my smartha Brahmins the middle pleat should be taken from inside. At the back the saree should not show a separation. It can be worn with both 6 yard or 9 yard saree. With 6 yard the pant will be clear on the front right leg. With nine yard the Clarity is there only when you spread out your right leg. Hence the term “ola” meaning Olage or inside. Madhwa Brahmins where kacche similar to nauvari of Peshawar Brahmins. This is the same as uttar Karnataka/ Gulbarga style.

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