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Weddings in India

Trends in Bridal Salwar Kameez

When it comes to an Indian bride, salwar kameez comprises of one of the options that one considers for the D-day attire. One of the traditional Indian dresses; it offers her the perfect combination of elegance and comfort. Though it is mainly the Punjabis who have been known to wear a salwar suit on the wedding, brides from other culture have also started adopting the dress. Bridal salwaar kameez is adorned with a lot of embellishments, like heavy embroidery (with silver or golden thread), stones, crystals and sequins, to make it look rich and luxurious.

What Is Salwar Kameez
Salwar-kameez is one of the traditional dresses that are worn by the women in India, on a regular basis. The outfit comprises of a kameez (shirt), salwar (trousers) and dupatta/chunni (stole). The kameez can be described as a long shirt or tunic, which might have short, long or no sleeves. It comprises of chaak (side seams) below the waist-line and usually reaches the knees. The salwar can be taken to mean loose, pajama-like trousers, with an in-built string, at the waist level, for tying purposes. The dupatta/chunni is like a stole, which is either hung on the shoulder or slung across the neck.

Kurta Styles
There are a number of styles available in the salwar kameez, some of them pertaining to the shirt only, while the other concentrating mainly on the trousers. The popular kameez styles include the simple fitted style, Angrakha style, Anarkali style, A-line style and kurta-style. In the first style, the kameez is made as per the measurements of the body, making it as fit as possible, while allowing for ease of movement. The Angrakha-style has been copied from the musicians of the royal court. It has one side of the shirt overlapping the other, at the side.  

The Anarkali style of kameez is totally fitted to the body till the waist and from there on, it is cut in such a way that there is a lot of flare, almost like a skirt. It is somewhat similar to the dress worn by the Kathak dancers. The A-line kurta, as the very name suggests, takes the shape of an A. It is fitted at the top and widens up, as the length of the shirt increases. In the kurta-style kameez, the fitting is a bit loose and there is a collar as well. It is widely being worn by the women of the present generation.

Salwar Styles
In terms of salwar, the basic styles include churidaar, Patiala salwar, Pathani salwar, straight trousers and bell bottoms. In the last two styles, the kameez is shortened in length a bit, going above the knees. Getting back to churidaar, it is a tightly-fit trouser, which has a buttoned cuff at the ankle and falls into folds at the end (looking like a set of bangles resting on the ankle). Then, you have the Patiala salwar, which has much more flare than the normal one. It drapes in an elegant mould, forming even folds from hip to ankle

Patani salwar, as the very name suggests, has been taken from the salwars worn by the 'Pathans' (a caste in Muslims). It is baggy at the top, but tapers down as it reaches the ankles. Apart from this, the salwar can also be altered to take the form of straight trousers and bell bottoms. While churidaar, Patiala salwar and Pathani salwar count amongst the traditional Indian clothing items, the style of straight trousers and bell bottoms is a result of the increasing influence of western cultures, on the country.

The Fabrics
Bridal salwar kameez makes use of rich fabrics, which help impart a royal look to the lovely lady. In this context, satin is one of the popular choices, because of the sheer variety in its colors and the luxurious sheen it has. Then, you have silk, tissue and crepe, all of them comprising of the popular choices for an Indian bride. These days, georgette, velvet and even disheen are also regarded as good options for bridal salwaar kameez. While choosing between them, keep comfort, budget and the weather in mind.

The Colors
While red is the traditional color chosen for the bridal salwar kameez, shades of golden, onion, orange, pink, yellow, green and brown are also a part of the hot trend. In addition, the designers are experimenting with two shades of the same color, or two contrasting colors, for the dress as well. Today, you can see a combination of colors like red and yellow, green and red, yellow and pink, blue and green, orange and yellow, for the salwar suit. The choice of color that you make, in the end, will totally depend upon your preference and the time of your wedding (whether day or night).

Anarkali Suits

After the short kameez (shirt), it is again the time for the long kameez to come back in fashion. For quite sometime, traditional functions (like wedding) have seen females wearing the short shirts, with parallels, churidars or salwars. Now, it’s the time to see long shirts, at times ending just above the ankle, worn along with churidars. Talking about long shirts, the trend of Anarkali suits has come back once again. The latest fashion style to emerge in the market for traditional Indian attire, the suit is today seen making its presence felt almost everywhere, right from wedding parties to jagrans to everyday wear.

Anarkali style churidar suit dresses do have a traditional touch to them. This is the reason why they are preferred on formal occasions, like wedding, festival and other ceremonies. Unlike what most people believe, such suits are not meant for the slim women only. Rather, the flare is adjusted, depending upon the size of the woman who has to wear it. In case of healthy women, the flare is reduced a bit, to make sure that it does not add to her bulk. On the other hand, thin women can go for as much flare as they want. As for the bodice, it is tightly fitted and thus, enhances the figure of almost any and every woman.

The Look
Still confused about the Anarkali look? Try remembering Madhubala in the song ‘Pyar kiya to darna kya’ from ‘Mughal-e-Azam’ or Madhuri in the song ‘Aaja Nachle’ from the movie ‘Aaja Nachle’. Now, got it? Anarkali suits are worn with churidars (a tightly-fit trouser, which has a buttoned cuff at the ankle and falls into folds at the end) and the footwear usually comprises of Punjabi juttis. As far as the kameez is concerned, it is figure-hugging till the upper torso and below that, it turns into a frock and gets a lot of flare.

Fabrics & Colors
Anarkali suits usually come in flowing materials, which allow the frock-like style (below the bodice) to have a free flow. More often than not, Materials like crepes, georgettes, silks and brocades are the ones that are preferred to make such suits. As for the colors that are most popular in the Anarkali suits, it depends upon occasion as well as overall weather conditions. While bright colors are opted for formal occasions and in winters, pastel shades rule the roost in everyday wear and the summer season.

Formal Occasions
The Anarkali suits that are worn on formal occasions somewhat differ from those donned in everyday life. In case of formal suits, the shirt (kameez), especially its bodice, is heavily embellished. More often than not, the frock below the bodice has embroidered borders only. The work done on the shirts includes use of sequins, embroideries, stones and other embellishments. Sometimes, zardozi work is also done on the Anarkali suits. The price of the formal suits starts from somewhere around Rs 2000 and can go up to any limit.


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