There are two types of cloth specification based on their length.
While 4 yards will be enough for wrapping around the waist once, 8 yards will come for two wraps around.
The apprehension that the Dhoti will come off the waist is only an uncomfortable feeling and once one gets used to wearing the Dhoti he will feel comfortable.
Dhoti is very comfortable,convenient, easy to wear, economical and airy.
It takes very little time to wear and washing is simple and one can do it with hand.
There are various colors,mostly white,black,Saffron and Navy Blue.
Only white is recommended by the Sastras(Hindu Rule Book for House Holders)
Saffon colour Dhoti is worn by Ascetics .
Householders are proscribed from wearing this Dhoti of this colour.
Eight yards Dhoti shall be more comfortable as 4 yards will be not sufficient in length for adults of more than 5’6″.
There are two styles of wearing Dhoti.
One is wearing it just by wrapping around the waist.
The other is called ‘ Pancha Kachcham'( five fold tuck in) , which is prescribed by the Sastras for House holders(Unmarried should not wear in this style)
It indicates that one is married.
Panchakacha is , now a days worn by the Hindus, during functions, both for auspicious and inauspicious)
In fact it should be worn daily.
Panchakacha style wrapping is reported to preserve the electrical/magnetic forces in the Human Body and does not earth it,as the wrapped cloth is fully connected at all ends with no loose ends.
In case one of us aren’t aware.. The kacha style of dressing (where in the saree or the dhoti is worn in the style that ultimately is similar to a pair of pants) has been made compulsory for the married lot because-
Steps to wear Pancha Kacha
Open the 8 or 9 yard dhoti completely.
Hold the dhoti such that you are right down the center of the dhoti (lengthwise). Both the ends should be free and you should be holding the dhoti such that there is enough dhoti to go around you just once.
Wrap it around you once (as shown) keeping the wrap a little tight at the stomach portion.
Fold the dhoti a few times so that the it is held firmly at your hip.
Take the end that is on top (typically should be the one to your left); Starting from the end, slowly make folds of about 2 inches each (kosuval).
Insert the folds into the wrap around the hip (as shown).
Take the breadth portion of the top fold and starting from the end (so that the border coloring is visible), make similar folds (as shown).
Insert this second set of folds on top of the previous one (as shown).
Take the other free end of the dhoti, starting breadthwise, make similar folds.
Run this between your legs and bring it behind you (as shown).
Ensure that the folds are not twisted.
Insert the new set of folds behind your back (as shown).
Check that the kachcham looks like this .
For images for each step click
It is not.
Once you get the hang of it, it is very simple.
For wrapping around the waist you can tie thw first fold either on the left side of your waist or right,depending on which ever is convenient to you( left-handed might prefer Right tuck in)
- Madurai: Where Gandhi Donned the Dhoti (findingnalanda.wordpress.com)