Tips and tricks from the experts: How to wear a sari

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Did you know there are more than 80 different ways to wear a sari?

The popular South Asian outfit is actually just a long rectangle of fabric, but, when draped properly, can create elegant silhouettes and unique looks.

Watch the video above to see the most common way to wear a sari. Reporter Pooja Lodhia demonstrates, along with the staff of Roop Sari Palace in the Mahatma Gandhi District.

Five things you need to know about saris:

1 - They're old. Like, really old. Researchers have found depictions of women in saris dating all the way back to 100 B.C. Draping styles have changed over the years, but the concept has remained the same.

2 - They take practice getting used to. The fabric is usually six yards long, and can be intricately decorated, so it's easy to get tangled up. An experienced sari draper can usually put one on in five or ten minutes. For the inexperienced, many stores now carry pre-stitched saris with pleats and pins already in place.

3 - Styles vary from region to region in South Asia. For example, silk saris are popular in South India, while women in other regions might favor cotton or linen. Draping is also regional, but styles are constantly changing.

4 - You do have to wear something under them! You'll need a blouse and petticoat to wear under your sari. It's important they fit properly, too, because you'll be tucking part of the sari into the petticoat. Most store owners employ tailors who will stitch those pieces to order.

5 - Houston has plenty of sari shops. You can find thousands of styles at dozens of stores in the Gandhi District. We visited Roop Sari Palace, but just drive down Hillcroft Street if you want more options!
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