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How to Wear a Sari

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Sparkling with voice and charm, this picture book about a fashionable kid out to prove she’s not as small as everyone thinks is perfect for kids eager to grow up, and for those who love to play dress-up.

Being a little kid isn’t always fun and games. Sometimes, it’s downright annoying.

When a little girl tires of being treated like she’s TOO little, she sets out to prove to her family that she can do ANYTHING she puts her mind to . . .

. . . including putting on a colorful, twinkly, silky sari. Sure, they’re long and unwieldy—but that only means her family will be even more impressed when she puts it on all by herself.

Naturally, there are some hiccups along the way, but she discovers that she’s not the only one in her family who has set out with something to prove, with hilariously chaotic results. That’s what photo albums are for!

32 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 2020

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About the author

Darshana Khiani

3 books104 followers
Darshana Khiani is an author, engineer, and advocate for South Asian children’s literature. She is infinitely curious about the world and enjoys sharing her findings with young readers. If she can make a child laugh even better. Her debut picture book, How to Wear a Sari (Versify), was an Amazon Editors’ Pick. She enjoys hiking, solving jigsaw puzzles, and traveling. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family and a furry pup. Learn more at her website, www.darshanakhiani.com.

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5 stars
142 (32%)
4 stars
183 (42%)
3 stars
94 (21%)
2 stars
16 (3%)
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0 (0%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 109 reviews
Profile Image for Rajani LaRocca.
Author 24 books466 followers
May 2, 2021
An adorable book about a little girl who wants to feel all grown up by wearing a sari! Told in a spunky second-person voice and illustrated with sweet and humorous art that plays off the text, HOW TO WEAR A SARI is about trying hard, messing up, and fitting in anyway. It's sparkly fun!
Profile Image for Vicky Fang.
Author 25 books32 followers
April 24, 2021
HOW TO WEAR A SARI is such a cute book about a girl who just want to be a little bit grown-up! The story shows the struggles and successes of a girl as she tries to dress up in a grown-up sari. The text is fun and the illustrations are beautiful. Overall, this book is sweet, relatable, and gorgeous.
Profile Image for Isabella Kung.
Author 8 books25 followers
April 23, 2021
This is such a playful and fabulous book! This story centers around a girl who has grown tired of being treated like a little kid, a feeling we can all relate to. To win her family's respect, she is determined to wear a sari, just like the adults do. After searching through countless pattern-filled choices and with the help of her dog, she finds the most gorgeous sari of all. While she struggles initially to get the wrapping, tucking, and pleating just right, she never gives up and wears it like a pro! Hilarity ensues when she begins to accessorize and puts on her mother's high heels! At the end, she achieved a family milestone. This is a fun and delightful book about dressing up, about girls who are not so little and can accomplish anything, and about the importance of family and saris in the South Asian culture.
Profile Image for Angela.
Author 4 books48 followers
May 12, 2021
A dress-up story with a cultural twist! In this "how-to" book, the reader is directly addressed with the steps of how to wear a grown-up, glamorous sari like "aunties everywhere." As with most firsts the kids long to do, things go predictably awry. Cute and colorful.
Profile Image for Carrie Finison.
Author 4 books76 followers
April 29, 2021
In this charming story, a little girl goes rooting through her mom's collection of saris so that she can try one on and show how grown up she is. It turns out the intricacies of wearing a sari are a little more than she bargained for, but with some determination and help (from her adorable pup) she perseveres and finally gets it right - sort of! Anyone who loves dressing up in swishy clothes and dancing in front of the mirror - or family - will relate to the exuberant and joyful text and illustrations. At the end, I loved how the main character was shown as fitting right in to her family, despite some mishaps.
Profile Image for Hope Lim.
Author 7 books12 followers
May 17, 2021
How to Wear a Sari is about a girl who gets tired of being treated like a little kid and wants to show that she can do grown-up things. All she needs is Sari, and she is set to go. After some trial and error, and a bit of persistence, she finally succeeds, not only wearing Sari perfectly but also creating a memorable experience. This story is very child-friendly, reflecting on the inner-working of a child’s mind and the ending is unexpected but its humorous twist will surely bring out a smile in young readers. Darshana Khiani has used a unique cultural element to capture a universal experience to which all children can relate.
Profile Image for Sita Singh.
Author 4 books18 followers
June 14, 2021
This adorable story is about a girl who is tired of being treated like a little kid and wants to feel all grown up by wearing a sari just like her mom and aunties. From choosing the right one to wrapping it the right way, the little girl is determined to prove that she is not too little to accomplish anything she sets her mind to. Told in a charming second-person voice, Darshana Khiani’s delightful text pairs excellently with Joanne Lew-Vriethoff’s vibrant art. HOW TO WEAR A SARI is a heartwarming and humorous book that every child will relate to. Highly recommend!
Profile Image for Julie Hedlund.
Author 6 books193 followers
November 5, 2021
Heartwarming and funny book that's full of exuberance! A little girl wants to prove she is not so little by wearing one of her mother's fancy saris. But as she struggles (and hilarity ensues), she learns that a little love from her family goes a long way toward making her feel special. This sweet book is relatable to all children who want to grow up a little faster. It's a bonus that those unfamiliar with saris will learn how they are donned, step by step.
Profile Image for Kirsten.
Author 32 books67 followers
April 7, 2021
In this highly relatable book, a girl tries to prove how grown up she is by donning a sari. She struggles to get the tucks and pleats just right (with the help of an adorable dog, of course). When she's through she grabs her mom's high heels and jewelry but let's just say things don't exactly go as planned. Khiani's humor shines, while Lew-Vriethoff's colorful illustrations bring the scene to life. This book is perfect for fans of FANCY NANCY. As a nonfiction nerd, I would have loved back matter about the importance of saris in southasian culture. Five stars.
Profile Image for Kelly Carey.
Author 1 book41 followers
April 20, 2021
I used to love it when a dance or gym teacher pulled out a big bin of scarves to play with and young readers will be begging to experiment with a scarf or a real sari after reading HOW TO WEAR A SARI by Darshana Khiani. The pages are decorated with flowing patterned saris as our young protagonist gets advice from the narrator on how to use a sari to feel grown up. Spoiler alert – it doesn’t always go perfectly. If you read this book and have saris in your house, be prepared to share! If you don’t have a sari – you better have a few scarves handy!
Profile Image for Joana Pastro.
Author 3 books23 followers
May 6, 2021
This picture book is absolutely adorable, and oh so relatable! The main character sets out to prove that she’s not a little kid by putting on a sari all by herself. That proves to be a lot harder them expected, and the funniest situations ensue. Get ready to read this joyful, heartwarming and hilarious picture book over and over again!
Profile Image for Charlotte Offsay.
Author 6 books83 followers
June 11, 2021
How to Wear A Sari is a heartwarming and humorous story about a young girl who wants to be big now. She decides that mastering wearing her mother's sari is sure to prove once and for all that she isn't as small as everyone thinks. With a wonderfully heartwarming and relatable twist at the end, this is the perfect picture book about growing up, embracing mistakes, and being in the moment. ⁠
Profile Image for Andrew.
2,053 reviews49 followers
January 27, 2022
A little girl who loves to dress up, but is always told she is too little, decides to prove the grown-up's wrong. She tries very hard to show how to wear a sari. She even uses her faithful dog to help her.
Can she show us all how to wear a sari...successfully?

The cartoon-like illustrations by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff and the playful text by Darshana Khiani compliment each other perfectly.
Whether you wish to explore new cultures, try something new, enjoy fashion or dress-up, here's a fun book for you to try.

*I will add that this young girls' illustrated scrapbook of endeavors at the back of the book are smile-inducing.
Profile Image for Saira Mir.
Author 1 book11 followers
October 28, 2021
The joys of childhood dress-up reach new heights in Darshana Khiani’s playful picture book HOW TO WEAR A SARI. Be inspired and entertained by a little fashionista’s adorable attempts to tame yards of sari fabric to earn a place among the grown-ups. Illustrator Joanne Lew-Vriethoff creates a sensory playground of flowing silk and dazzling jewels. A fun family read you’ll return to again and again. #howtowearasari #southasiankidlit #humor
Profile Image for Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance.
5,871 reviews292 followers
October 10, 2021
A little girl sets out to prove she's not as little as everyone thinks she is, trying to put on one of her mom's colorful, twinkly, silky saris.

A swirl of color and action. A child can't resist identifying with the main character in this book in her attempt to show she is growing up.
Profile Image for Candy Wellins.
Author 5 books16 followers
May 4, 2021
All kids will relate to this story about individuality and independence. The protagonist wants to show she’s big enough, old enough, capable enough so she decides to start wearing a sari. Of course, grown up things are never as easy as they seem and learning that is part of growing up. Beautifully written.
Profile Image for Hannah Holt.
Author 3 books55 followers
July 14, 2022
I love the spunky main character, the colorful illustrations, the humorous mishaps, and learning more about what goes into wearing a Sari. My kids love this book, too. A fun read for everyone!
Profile Image for Melanie Ellsworth.
Author 3 books11 followers
April 22, 2021
Children will relate to this book and the theme of wanting to do something that is considered too grown up for them. How to Wear a Sari depicts this struggle in such a fun way, as the young girl tries to wear a sari just like her mom and aunties. Readers who haven’t worn a sari before will learn about each step, and children will laugh at the humor as the child struggles through the process. The message of a child embracing her culture and persisting in something important to her resonates in a playful way. The bright, joyful colors and the warmth and love of the family scenes also shine through in the illustrations.
Profile Image for Jillian Heise.
2,320 reviews482 followers
June 7, 2021
A charming book about not only saris, but family traditions and young ones being sick of being told they're too little to do big kid/grown up things. The joyful illustrations enhance the how-to element that makes this book an extra delight, made more relatable through the second person narration.
Pair with other how-to stories, cultural clothing stories, or books about not being "little" or the rights of passage to being more grown in a community or family.
Profile Image for Abby Johnson.
3,373 reviews319 followers
August 31, 2021
Super cute and colorful book about a little girl who desperately wants to be grown-up and wear a sari like her mom and the other women in the family. Hand to fans of Fancy Nancy and other books for sparkly kids.
Profile Image for Abi Cushman.
Author 5 books81 followers
May 5, 2021
This story is so much fun. I love the cheeky voice of the narrator as the little girl powers through putting on a sari. I think whether or not kids have tried to wear a sari before or not, this story is so relatable because kids are always trying to do things by themselves to prove their independence and maturity. The somewhat disastrous results at the end are so hilarious and heartwarming. I think this story would pair really well with I Am Famous, also illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff, which stars another spunky little girl.
Profile Image for Lindsay Metcalf.
Author 6 books25 followers
June 2, 2021
I love this book! Such a sweet introduction to saris for all children. The second-person, instructive voice lends humor and brings out the universal desire of a child to act like the grown-ups around them. The flowing but fun illustrations by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff convey the vibrancy of the MC's mother's sari collection. A beautiful addition to any picture book collection!
Profile Image for Sarah W.
109 reviews3 followers
June 26, 2021
So cute and laugh out loud funny. The colorful illustrations added so much too.
Profile Image for Mary Copp.
50 reviews3 followers
May 2, 2021
How To Wear A Sari by Darshana Khiani is a delightful and fun romp with a spirited and determined main character. From choosing just the right sari to wrapping the cloth just the right way, this persistent and lively child impresses all! A magnicent celebration of this child’s culture, family, and her own wonderful spunk! Colorful and expressive illustrations by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff are a perfect match for the text.
Profile Image for Renée LaTulippe.
Author 13 books27 followers
March 21, 2022
What little kid doesn’t dream of being big? In this sweet story, a little girl who is tired of being told she’s too small to do this or that decides to dress BIG—in her mother’s sari. That’s a lot of fabric for a child, and soon enough hilarity ensues until she ends up making a BIG impression, even if it’s not exactly the one she’d hoped to make. Khiani’s conversational second-person text keeps the action moving, while Lew-Vriethoff’s charming illustrations bring the story to colorful life. A delightful story about family love and embracing mistakes. I love that I learned a bit about how to wear a sari, too!
Profile Image for Becky Levine.
Author 4 books16 followers
February 6, 2022
What a fun story, with a charming and persistent protagonist. Told in 2nd person, to draw in children listening to the story, HOW TO WEAR A SARI brings to life the determination that a child can bring to the one, most important at the moment, thing they want to do--in this case put on a sari. The twists and turns of the story (and the sari!) will make you laugh out loud and root for this little girl to succeed. The energy and gorgeous colors of the illustration mesh perfectly with the narrative voice to make this a must-have story for the little ones in your life.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 109 reviews

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