by Raj Desai | 10/18/21
All products listed were in stock and priced as shown at the time this was written. Dulhan is not compensated for any of the following recommendations.
There’s something about wearing a beautiful sari that makes me feel closer to my culture.
And the feeling of achieving pleat perfection for that one party back in 2009? Nothin’ like it.
I’ve been to my fair share of parties and events since then. I always try to wear a sari. And I always end up cursing my way to uneven pleats, shaking my hands at the sari gods and screaming, “Never again!”
It was during one of my many sari lamenting sessions when my dear friend Raman told me about the Sari Saheli.
I was intrigued. Was there really something out there (aside from my cousin) that could help me pleat the perfect sari?
How It Works
Okay, so there *is* some basic skill required to use the Sari Saheli.
Meaning you need to be able to drape the sari around once, tuck it into your petticoat or Sari Silhouette, and get a hold of the excess fabric (which becomes your pleats).
If, however, you’ve never tied a sari before and you want the easiest solution, literally no skill required, then you’re probably more interested in pre-pleated saris, like those from One Minute Saree.
1. Insert The Black Plate
The Sari Saheli is pretty heavy duty. It’s 9 plastic plates, for lack of a better word, attached together with pink elastic.
The black plate is alllll the way at the back. Tucking this bad boy in is what keeps the Sari Saheli in place so you can use both of your hands to pleat.
To get started, nestle it in between your petticoat and your stomach.
2. Pull Down The Next Plate
The next plate that comes down has a prong on the left labeled ‘A,’ and 3 prongs on the right labeled ‘1,’ ‘2,’ and ‘3.’
Start by threading your fabric under prong A. This will hold your sari in place while you pleat.
Stretch the fabric taut to the other side. Pick the number that corresponds to how you want your pleats to look.
Want lots of little pleats? Go to prong 1.
An average amount of medium-sized pleats? Prong 2.
And to get the fewest amount of large pleats, stick with prong 3.
Once your sari is under the prong of your choice, pull it back over to the left side.
3. Use A New Plate For Each New Pleat
Pull down the next plate to start another pleat. Repeat until you run out of fabric.
4. Clip, Remove, And Pin
When you’re finished, grab the little pink clips that came with your Sari Saheli.
Use 1 or both and clip the pleats at either side. Pull out the Sari Saheli.
All you have to do now is adjust your pleats to make sure they’re hitting the ground the way you like (you may have to pull a pleat up and lower another one to get it just right).
Once you’re happy with how your pleats look, flip them so they’re facing the right direction (right if you started draping your sari on the right; left if you started on the left).
All that’s left is for you to pin your pleats together at the top and halfway down. Tuck the pleats into your petticoat and you. Are. Done!
This product is so useful, helpful, and inexpensive (got mine on sale for $14!), that I’m VERY surprised that we’re not all screaming about it from every mountaintop.
And somewhere in Raleigh, my cousin is breathing a sigh of relief that she doesn’t have to fix our whole family’s saris at every event between now and the end of time (you’re welcome, Meenu Didi!).
If you’re going to a wedding, are a bridesmaid at a wedding, or you’re the one getting married but you don’t have any draping help, you NEED this tool. It’s amazing!
Just follow the directions included with your Sari Saheli to get the perfect pleats. AND there are also instructions on how to use the plate to pleat your palla (the part that goes over your shoulder).
Where You Can Get It
If you’re ready to take the plunge and get a Sari Saheli for yourself, visit their website to place an order.
It ships very quickly—you’ll have it within 10 days of placing your order.
And when you try it out, let me know what you think and share pics of those beautiful pleats!
Content strategist and UX writer who’s been researching and writing about weddings for 5 years. Addicted to Netflix, dirty martinis, and naps.