Tribal Art ‘Warli’ for Modern Fashion Wear

India’s rich cultural heritage is characterized by diversity and complexity on the one hand; and deceptive simplicity that presents profound thoughts in pleasing and unpretentious forms on the other. One of the leading arts in the second genre is that of Warli.


Warli paintings depict a range of complex scenes from wedding rituals, hunting scenes, fishing, and farming, to festivals and dances, and geometric patterns of flowers, trees, and animals, using nothing more than lines, dots, circles and triangles. Commonly seen adorning walls, this form of painting is said to have originated around 3000 BC amongst the Warli (Varli) tribes inhabiting the mountains and coastal regions of Maharashtra and Gujarat. Symbolising equilibrium of the universe, the Warli paintings were traditionally made by married women to celebrate a wedding and are associated with fertility and prosperity.

red ivory tunic set

Its apparent simplicity at the same time evokes a primal connect and its timeless appeal lends itself well to cater to the modern tastes for fashion mixed with ethnicity. AM:PM, which has derived inspiration from India’s rich and colourful heritage for over a decade, has forayed into the past of nomadic tribes to unearth the rich symbolism and present them in newer and innovative formats. Titled ‘Warli’, AM:PM has released a new range of fashion wear as part of its Summer collection.

black saree
Black Saree in Tribal Prints


Warli paintings are commonly made from a mixture of cow dung and red mud or using rice flour paste and a binding agent. To give them a modern makeover, AM:PM has infused them with vibrant hues such as sunshine yellow, crimson, olive and mint along with a palette of dark hues such as navy blue, sky black, and earth brown. The patterns suit a range of occasions right from the lunch date, to semi-formal and even formal dos, and will add colour to your festive wardrobe.


Designers Ankur and Priyanka Modi have yet again given this ancient art a modern twist, enhancing the ‘cool’ factor of summer-friendly fabrics with stick figure drawings, symbolic motifs and tribal jewellery (nose rings, pins and accessories) for that perfect silhouette. They have embellished breezy chanderi, lawn cotton, cotton poplin, linen and georgette with screen printing and tribal accents such as studs, stones, tassels, rings and multi-colour piping to create anytime-wear such as asymmetric tops, tunics and shirts.

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