Siminoi sarees may not be as famous as other handloom products in Odisha like Sambalpuri cotton, Kotpad or Khandua, but they are unique and have a rich history. In the past, Siminoi sarees were considered better than other handloom products in the region. Unfortunately, today, there is not a single weaver in Siminoi, Dhenkanal who is still engaged in the trade. Most of the villagers are not even aware that Siminoi was famous in the past for cotton saris.
Siminoi had a weaver society in the past, which was managed by Late Jyotirmaya Maharana. However, after his death, none of the weavers took an interest in keeping the name alive and moved on to powerlooms. This is a common problem faced by many traditional handloom weaves in India. With the younger generation not showing interest in the trade, the art of handloom weaving is slowly dying.
Siminoi is one of the unique weaves of Odisha. In Nuapatna, a revival project has been initiated, and some weavers have started making Siminoi sarees again. The distinct features of these sarees are the unique rectangular-shaped temple border and the ek-phulia border with the charming palla, which embraces straight-line motifs. The weavers have been able to preserve the essence of Siminoi sarees and bring it back to life.
Siminoi sarees were known for their durability, and the colors used in the sarees were made from natural dyes. The weavers used a combination of cotton and silk threads to create a unique texture, which made the sarees stand out from other handloom products in the region. The sarees were worn by women during auspicious occasions and festivals.
The decline of the Siminoi handloom industry is a sad reminder of the fading tradition of handloom weaving in India. With the advent of powerlooms and the younger generation not showing interest in the trade, many traditional handloom weaves are on the verge of extinction. The government has taken various initiatives to promote handloom products, but more needs to be done to preserve the art of handloom weaving.
Siminoi sarees are a unique handloom product of Odisha, which has a rich history. Although the weavers of Siminoi village are no longer engaged in the trade, some weavers in Nuapatna have taken up the task of reviving the art. The distinct features of Siminoi sarees, such as the unique rectangular-shaped temple border and the ek-phulia border with the charming palla, are being preserved. It is essential to promote and preserve handloom weaving as it is an integral part of Indian culture and heritage.