Tag: Bridal Lehenga

Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

Wedding shopping! The words illicit responses from utter delight to sheer dread amongst women. The ones who relish the idea of spending hours upon hours browsing stores, online websites and meeting with various designers for their dream outfits are in shopping heaven while the ones who think shopping is a complete waste of time are filled with an impending sense of doom regarding the whole exercise. However the one common thread binding both extremes of women is confusion! How to choose your Indian Wedding Attire?

Cover

A wedding outfit must reflect your personal style, which isn’t so difficult if you happen to be the decisive sort and know exactly what will make you look on point. But the waters get a little bit murky when it comes to Indian wedding attire mostly because Indian fashion is evolving at a tremendously fast pace. The age old traditional wedding clothing were worn over many years and passed on to future generations. These types of wedding outfits are still very popular, but as immensely talented designers churn out fresher, newer and reinvented collections each season the choice between going traditional or contemporary has never been harder. Leading to total chaos due to a plethora of luscious choices.

It also doesn’t help that nearly every female within a 20 mile radius of you will suddenly feel the incredible urge to dole out advice regarding what she thinks is the latest trend in Indian wedding dressing and what she would do if it was her time to shine. You might get adept at treating unsolicited advice as white noise after a few hundred times and imagine clubbing them over the head with a heavy object as you nod and smile aimlessly but sometimes a piece of that annoying advice will get stuck in your head and mess with your decisions.

In an effort to simplify things and make life a little bit easier during this hectic and stressful time we break down traditional and contemporary Indian wedding attire down to its bare bones with examples for (hopefully) quicker conclusions.

Salwar Kameez

Starting with the most versatile and confusion inducing choice – the Indian version of the pantsuit – Salwar Kameez.

To make it simple let silhouettes and embroideries be your distinction between traditional and contemporary. Traditional silhouettes have straightforward cuts and shapes. The embroideries on traditional Salwar Kameez styles are simple with Indian motifs and colours. These styles tend to be more wearable regardless of current trends making them classic and investment worthy.

Traditional Salwar Collection | Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

Contemporary Salwar Kameez styles tend to have more stylised silhouettes and abstract or western embroidery motifs. As with anything trendy the contemporary styles run the risk of becoming dated very quickly as each new season brings with it a different version of the contemporary Salwar Kameez.

Contemporary Salwar Kameez Collection | Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

Lehengas

Moving on to the Salwar Kameez’s super dressy cousin – the Lehenga. Lehengas can be divided up into traditional and contemporary based on styling, fabrics and the amount of embellishments.

Traditional Indian lehengas have short cholis with sleeves in varying lengths, flared skirts and feature a long dupatta that can be draped in different styles. These lehengas tend to be heavier on embroidery and made in luxurious silks or brocades. Both these elements tend to make traditional Indian lehengas very heavy to wear but the weight is a small price to pay for their unmatched grandeur and opulence.

Traditional Lehenga Collection | Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

Contemporary Indian lehengas break the mould with their silhouettes, minimal embroideries and sometimes do away with the dupatta. Women who want to be able to move around without being bogged down by their heavy outfits will love the contemporary styles. The availability of a variety of silhouettes that feature the lehenga and cholis in different cuts and shapes and the subdued embellishments make these ideal for those who want their clothes to be an extension of their personality.

Contemporary Lehenga Collection | Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

Sarees

The most quintessentially Indian piece of clothing is undoubtedly the saree. It is also a necessity in every Indian woman’s closet irrespective of her age. In the past sarees have always been more traditional and have been considered family heirlooms. The custom of daughters wearing their mother’s wedding saree at their own wedding is still prevalent even today. However the creative geniuses of Indian fashion have given the humble saree a modern day facelift and created a myriad of styles. Sarees can be distinguished as traditional or contemporary by the way they are draped, the fabric and the kind of embellishments.

Local craftsmen who have honed their skills over many generations make traditional sarees from indigenous Indian fabrics. Each state in India has its own distinctive style of saree that is worn by the women who reside there. Traditional Indian sarees are always in style and add a certain vintage charm to any look.

Traditional Saree Collection | Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

Contemporary Indian sarees are the new age evolution of the traditional saree. They are made in lighter fabrics like net and georgette that are easy to drape and hug the shape of the body creating the illusion of curves. Contemporary sarees can be simply or heavily embellished with different types of materials. Some sarees are also pre-stitched and pre-draped for women who can’t be bothered with the hassle of draping and pinning down the pleats. Contemporary sarees may not have the old world charm of traditional sarees but there is no denying their endless possibilities of creative styling.

Contemporary Saree Collection | Contemporary v/s Traditional Indian Wedding Attire

This post is provided by Strand of Silk, an online retailer of contemporary Indian fashion and bridal wear.

Classic in California: Beautiful Wedding Shoot

I simply can’t get over these beautiful images from a post wedding shoot by Lin and Jirsa in UCSD, California. Shehzad and Neena look stunning and their outfits are perfect for this wedding shoot. Neena’s bridal lehenga with its magenta border and delicate encrusted stones, along with Shehzad’s smart suit with a matching magenta pocket square bring a touch of classic to California.

Lin and Jirsa’s photography speaks for itself and strikes a delightful balance between creative, crisp, romantic and fun. They are known for creating a comfortable environment for a wedding shoot, where personalities and affection come across effortlessly in the images, as seen in Shehzad and Neena’s poses.

All images courtesy: Lin & Jirsa

Shehzad and Neena Wedding - Photography by Lin and Jirsa

Shehzad and Neena Wedding - Photography by Lin and Jirsa

Shehzad and Neena Wedding - Photography by Lin and Jirsa

Shehzad and Neena Wedding - Photography by Lin and Jirsa

Shehzad and Neena Wedding - Photography by Lin and Jirsa

For more Indian wedding inspiration and insight, sprinkled with a spoon of humour, read about our famous wedding stereotypes!

Bridal Lehengas & Sunsets

This gorgeous couple took advantage of the sunset backgrop for a romantic photoshoot, before their wedding reception party. The transition of light in the shots is simply stunning as the sun slowly sets and envelopes the couple in beautiful vanilla twilight, and then an orange glow to a midnight blue glimmer on the couple. For me, the gorgeous champagne shimmer bridal lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal casts a further magical spell on the photography. Upon first glance, the bridal lehenga appears as a delicate pink ombre beauty, yet it is adorned with embellishments and crystal bead embroidery.

A tip for those brides wanting to do an outdoor bridal photoshoot is to opt for a bridal lehenga with a pastel tone. Light hues work well in an outdoor setting and a slight shimmer in your bridal lehenga will look stunning in photographs. The pleasant hues will also create a brilliant contrast against the blue sky as the sun sets…a perfect fairytale setting!

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Stunning Indian lehenga by Raakesh Agarvwal

Indian Wedding Couples: Special Moments Captured Creatively

Gone are the days where the bride and groom’s portrait photos are captured in a standardised manner, against a plain coloured backdrop. Wedding photographers these days have mastered the art of photography to another level, capturing Indian wedding couples in exotic destinations and fairytale settings, and even reminiscent of Bollywood movie scenes.

In fact, theres is no limit to a photographers creativity and the images below captured by Monir Ali proves just this. These images of Indian wedding couples is a breath of fresh air and hopefully you are inspired for your own wedding shoot!

A further tip to Indian wedding couples for their glamour photos is to coordinate their ensembles with one another, so that there is unity in the photographs, such as shown in the images below. Don’t their Indian wedding ensembles look stunning!

All images courtesy: Monir Ali photography

Outdoor Indian Wedding photo by Monir Ali Outdoor Indian wedding photo by Monir Ali Closeup couples wedding shot by Monir Ali Western wedding photo by Monir Ali

Closeup couples photo by Monir Ali

 

Indian Wedding Shoes : Let’s take a Closer Look

The Indian wedding photography horizon has expanded along the years and introduced fresh and creative means of capturing those special wedding moments. Not only are the portraits of the bride and groom captured, but so are the intricate details of their wedding accessories: the indian wedding shoes.

Photographer Monir Ali does just this by thinking outside the box and I love how he has captured these shots of Indian wedding shoes! The creativity and colours of the first image, with the ‘love’ letters embedded in the Indian wedding shoes is simply striking and you can’t help but notice the stylish flag pillows. The second image helps create an interesting story behind the wedding day. How adorable does the bride look in her Ugg boots? All the better, as no bride would want to trudge through the snow in Indian wedding shoes several inches high! These photography ideas will certainly infuse freshness and creativity in your Indian wedding shots.

Images courtesy of: Monir Ali photography

Creative shoes photo by Monir Ali

Creative outdoor shoes photo by Monir Ali

Fashion in India: Top Bridal Trends

There used to be a time when Indian weddings were humble, no-fuss affairs and when the number on the guest list barely exceeded 50, wedding decorations were kept to a minimum and the bride was simply clad in traditional red and gold attire. And then the 21st century happened!

Now, planning a wedding can take several months up to an year. Choosing the right wedding planner, hiring the right caterers, including and excluding people from the never ending guest list, zeroing down on the right theme for wedding decorations, booking the perfect location are all elements at just the tip of the ice-berg!

The most confusing element for the bride is selecting the right wedding dress for her dream wedding. To make the process simpler, here is a list of some of the top bridal trends for fashion in India, which we hope you enjoy reading!

Blue – The New Red

Although red will always be a classic hue when it comes to Indian bridal dresses, women are also experimenting with shades of blues and greens, which is a fresh and contemporary change, reflective of the modern bride.

Blue Lehenga | Fashion in India
Blue Lehenga

For brides who want to strike a balance between classic red and modern tones, blue tones can be infused with shades of red, maroon and orange to achieve a unique and glamorous look.

Blue and pink lehenga | Fashion in India
Blue and pink lehenga

Keep it Simple

Amidst the vibrant red, orange and other unconventional shades that are always dominating the wedding season, there is also a simple and seductive gold. Cream coloured lehengas with elegant embroidery work is the latest take when it comes to top Indian bridal trends. The best part about these nude shades is that they give you immense flexibility whilst deciding on the jewellery for your outfit. Kundan jewellery, emeralds, rubies and polki all complement this look beautifully.

Gold lehenga | Fashion in India
Gold lehenga

Mirror Work and Silver Embroidery

Need some variations from the traditional gold embroideries? Go silver! As brides get more experimental with bold colours and styles, silver zari work is taking centre stage. Inspired from the tribes of Rajasthan, intricate silver zari and mirror work is surely a look to embrace as it is fashionable, fun, flirty and also super light in weight, making it one of the best bridal trends for fashion in India!

Mirror work | Fashion in India
Mirror work bridal lehenga

Embrace Prints 

If you are not a fan of bling, and shy away from the shine of mirror work, printed lehengas are the best choice for you and can make a big impact. Whether bold, floral or subdued, pick your favourite print!

Printed lehenga | Indian Fashion
Narghis Fakhri in a stunning rose-printed lehenga

The Royal Bride

If you decide to go for a regal look for your wedding, anarkali is your calling. This garment surely makes for a royal bride, and can be teamed up with a majestic polki set. Embrace a layered anarkali, as it will give you a voluminous look, yet flatter the feminine figure. There is no doubt you will be the bride to be remembered with this amazing Indian bridal fashion trend.

Regal outfit | Indian Fashion
Regal outfit with a gold border

Fancy Back

Blouses with fancy backs are the hottest trend in the Indian bridal wear. While it is a good idea to avoid a plunging neckline on your wedding, revealing your back a little with creative blouse designs can add instant glamour to your look.

Fancy back | Fashion in India
Fancy back

Back to the Roots
For all those who cannot think beyond a single colour for your wedding attire, don’t think twice before buying that head-to-toe red anarkali. Single colours with stunning embroidery are one of the most stylish Indian bridal trends today. Despite the numerous new colours and trends in the market, it would be impossible to shy away from the classic red hue; the epitome of bridalwear.

Red Bridal lehenga | Fashion in India
Red Bridal lehenga

Long-sleeve blouse

A stylish long sleeve blouse is an essential trend that had been missing from the wedding fashion scenario until recently. Thanks to designers like Manish Malhotra and Anju Modi, women can be comfortable during the winter wedding season and still look super glamorous and stylish. From impressive mandarin collars to flattering velvet fabric, there’s a whole range of fashionable blouse designs you can select from that tickle your fashion buds.

Long sleeve blouse | Fashion in India
Long sleeve blouse

Jacket-style blouse

The idea of teaming up a saree, suit or lehenga with a jacket might sound a bit out of the box, but this trend is definitely here to stay. Jackets are a top Indian bridal fashion trend that a bride must consider investing in, as they give a chic, contemporary appeal.

long red jacket | Fashion in India
Long red jacket

I hope you were inspired by the selection of these bridal trends for fashion in India! Whether you opt for a fancy back, long jacket style or a printed lehenga for your bridal ensemble, carry it off with much elegance, grace and confidence!

A Love Affair with Indian Bridal Dresses

In a country whose basis of unity, arises not from the similarity, but the diversity of its people, it doesn’t come as a surprise when the festivities take multifarious forms as well. One comes across starkly contrasting cultures and traditions without even having to leave the country. Speaking of festivities and jamboree, which other celebration could kindle more euphoria than a good old Indian wedding! And believe it or not, like many other happy occasions celebrated in India, a wedding too has many a genre (and many kind of indian bridal dresses). So whether its north, south, east or west, every wedding is different from the rest!

If weddings in a country can be of so many styles, why on earth should the bride’s wedding dress be much behind? Unlike the West, where most brides don a white wedding gown for their special day, in India, brides wear different colours and attires depending on their culture and the state they come from. Quite aptly reflecting the spectacular melange of the motherland, Indian Bridal dresses are so varied and rich in culture, that they deserve special mention. So let’s take it from the top! (Pun intended).

KASHMIR:

In the land of Kashmir, beautifully embroidered red, pink or yellow lehengas, are the norm when it comes to bridal dresses. Kashmiri Pandit brides are also known to wear a head gear, called Kalpush, which is essentially an extensive cap folded three or four times and lined with silk or cotton from the inside.  The Dupatta is put over the Kalpush, which enhances the look of the bride.

When it comes to accessorising, antique gold jewellery makes quite the style statement with moderately done makeup. The bride adorns intricate necklaces, gold bangles around the wrists and Paayal and toe ring in her feet. Another unique ornament worn by the Kashmiri bride, is the Dejharoo, which is a pair of gold pendants hanging by a gold chain worn as earrings. In addition to this, a two meter long waist band also forms an integral part of the bride’s outfit.

Kashmiri Muslim brides on the other hand, wear a long loose fitting robe known as Pheran which is quite beautifully embroidered and is well suited to the cold weather conditions of Kashmir. It is usually Red in colour and is worn with a head gear similar to that worn by the Kashmiri Pundit brides, but is known as the Kasaba. It is held tight by silver pins and trinkets and decorated with gold embroidery and embellishments of silver pendants hanging on the forehead.

Although there is so much diversity within the two kinds of Kashmiri bridal outfits, it can also be seen that they are quite similar in many ways, thus making them some of the most unique Indian bridal dresses.

Indian Bridal Dresses - Kashmiri Pandit and Muslim Bride
Kashmiri Pandit Bride                                                  Kashmiri Muslim Bride

PUNJAB

Punjabis are known to be fun-loving and enthusiastic people who do not miss a single chance to celebrate their culture. The bridal attire for a Punjabi bride is usually a lehenga or salwar-kameez. The colour of the bridal attire is generally very bright which compliments the brides’ fair skin-tone. The salwar kameez consists of a long, straight blouse going below the knees, with two slits on either side. This garment is called the kameez and can be seen in tons of different colors, embroideries, pleating, and other embellishments. The salwar on the other hand, is flared with a horizontal band at the end. This look is incomplete without the traditional duppata or scarf worn in front.

Punjabi brides carry off this look with great ease and perfection, thus listing Punjab as one of the most stylish states, when it comes to Indian bridal dresses.

Punjabi lehenga and salwar kameez
Punjabi lehenga and salwar kameez

GUJARAT

With changing times, many Indian Bridal dresses have become subject to miscellany, but when it comes to Gujarati wedding attires, ethnicity is the key. The style of wearing the sari is unique, with the Pallav facing the front, instead of the back, like in most Indian bridal dresses. There are basically two types of wedding saris for a Gujarati bride, one of them is the Panetar which is basically a white sari arnamented with a red Bandhini border, and the other type is the Gharchola which is a red Bhandini sari crisscrossed with woven gold squares, that enclose bandhini motifs. Though red is considered as the most auspicious colour for the bride, now-a-days contemporary colours and experimental designs have also become a hot favourite option for the brides-to-be. Designer bridal lehangas available in different shades are also gaining momentum and are substituting the traditional sarees.

Panetar
Panetar
 Gharchola
Gharchola

MAHARASHTRA

The Maharashtrians are very simple and down-to-earth people, so naturally, their wedding attire too tends to be less bedazzled and ornamented than other Indian bridal dresses. The traditional attire for Maharashtrian brides is the Paithani saree. It tends to be single or dual coloured, mostly gold, yellow, or green with beautifully embellished golden borders. The Maharashtrian brides have been known to favour the colour green, and why not! The splendid green colour of the Marathi bridal dress gives it an edge over other Indian bridal dresses which are usually red in colour. The paithani sarees have thick, oblique-square designs on the borders, with motifs of peacocks, kaleidoscopes, parrots etc. in the pallu of the saree. Along with this, traditional gold jewellery with simplistic makeup add the finishing touches to this amazing piece of garment. No wonder the Marathi wedding outfit is one of the best Indian Bridal Dresses.

Maharashtra
Emerald Green Saree. Traditional Make-Up from Maharashtra

BENGAL

Much like the Marathi weddings, Bengali weddings too are humble and unpretentious affairs. A Bengali bride’s traditional wedding sari is usually made in Banaras silk, white in colour with a red, maroon or pink border. The sari, though simple in appearance, exudes elegance and grace with gold zari or buta work. These wedding saris also come with amazingly done motifs, which gives the entire outfit, a very ethereal look, further accentuated by sophisticated pearl and kundan jewellery. The Bengali bride also dons a head gear called Mukut, and her make-up also consists of artistically designed red and white dots on the sides, and a big red bindi in the centre of her forehead. Reflecting beauty and elegance, the Bengali bride is certainly a gem for the onlookers, as much as the Bengali Wedding saree is a gem for the Indian Bridal dresses.

Bengal
Traditional orange saree from Bengal
Bengal
Traditional white saree from Bengal

RAJASTHAN

Like in many other Indian bridal dresses, the traditional wedding attire for a Rajasthani bride is a Lehenga, which is essentially a three piece garment consisting of a blouse called the Choli, a long skirt called the Ghagra and a Dupatta or a scarf, which beautifully complements the former.

A lot of Gota work is used on the Rajasthani version of the Indian bridal dress. The impressive use of appliqué, with intricate patterns that are embroidered in fine gold threads, not to mention the Zari ribbon, enhance the richness and beauty of this bridal outfit manifold.

Rajasthani brides are known to splurge on lots of jewelry for their wedding day, that mainly consists of a Rakhri which is a circular piece of jewelry for the forehead, Balis or hanging earrings, the Chooda which is a set of gold and ivory bangles, Timaniyaan – which is a choker studded with uncut diamonds and jems embedded in gold leaf, Bichuye – gold anklets, Bajubandh or stone-studded armlets, and a Nath – a nose ring. The distinctive outfit and extraordinary jewelry, not only add to the look of a Rajasthani bride, but also make the Rajasthani wedding attire stand out from all other Indian bridal dresses.

rajasthan
Red Rajasthani ensemble
rajasthan
Pink Rajasthani ensemble

ASSAM

Marked with modesty and soberness, Assamese weddings are attractive and beautiful in their own way. The traditional dress worn by the Assamese bride is called a Mekhla, which is a garment generally created from Muga silk, and adorned with gold and silver threads. Mekhla is quite an interesting ensemble, as it surely appears like a sari, but unlike the usual single cloth saree, mekhla comprises of two to three pieces of clothing, a feature which distinguishes it from other Indian Bridal dresses.

The first part of the Mekhla is worn as a skirt and the other half is draped like an anchal of the sari. The fabric on the anchal part is light-weight and flowy, whereas the fabric of the skirt is ornamented with a broad border and embroidery and is relatively heavier in texture. These Mekhlas are designed in a myriad of rich colors such as blue, green, yellow and red, which is again a distinguishing feature of this Indian bridal dress.

Assam
Assamese attire

For the Assamese bride, jewelry is the most important form of accessory. Most of this jewelry is made of gold and is worn in contemporary or traditional designs, but some Assamese jewelry is also made by hand, and is called Jun Biri. The Jun Biri designs are immensely inspired by nature, musical instruments and various Assamese household goods, a form which is never seen in any other Indian Bridal dresses.

ANDHRA PRADESH

Telugu brides are known to wear red silk sari for the big day, as this color is considered to be very auspicious, which also holds good for many other Indian bridal dresses.  The bride can also choose a color that is similar to red, such as crimson or orange, the main idea being that it should be bright. The attire is then aptly matched with traditional pieces of jewelry in gold and pearls.

Andhra Pradesh
Bride wearing an orange saree in Andhra Pradesh

TAMIL NADU

In Tamil Nadu, gorgeous Kanchipuram saris make up the dress code for the wedding day. For ages, rich silk Kanchipuram sari has been the hallmark of any Tamil bride’s wedding ceremony.  Replete with traditional motifs, the six yard long sari, apart from gold thread work, also has magnificent sequins and embroidery work, making it one of the most elegant Indian bridal dresses.

Tamil Nadu
Kanchipuram sari from Tamil Nadu

 

The Many Facets of Indian Brides

Freelance photographer Vijeta Shrivastava, based in Bhopal, India, creates magic behind her lens and infuses her photography with beauty and vibrancy. She does just this through capturing beauty shots of Indian brides below.

There are various looks Indian brides need to embrace in adaption to the various different Indian wedding ceremonies, such that pretty soon the bride will lose track of her celebrity-like outfit changes! The first shot is of a beautiful bride taken during an Indian wedding ceremony. The black and white effect with an emphasis on the red vermilion powder on the bride’s forehead or sindoor, symbolises her marital status. The placing of sindoor is not simply thought of as an Indian wedding ritual, but signifies the husband’s long life.

Bride at an Indian Wedding Ceremony
Bride at an Indian Wedding Ceremony

Once the Indian wedding ceremonies have taken place, it is time for the glamorous bridal shoots to commence. Yes I know, it is difficult to contain the excitement, as this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for all brides to get completely dolled up for one of the biggest days of her life! The Indian bride captured in the stunning shot below is seen wearing a magenta and emerald green bridal ensemble with delicate embroidery. As important as a bride’s Indian wedding attire is, a high attention to detail should also be given to her Indian wedding jewellery choices. The bride below is seen wearing a stunning peice of hair jewellery or maang tika on her forehead, adorned with delicate pearls and semi-precious stones.

Indian bridal jewellery
Indian bridal jewellery

Some quick, yet important tips for all the Indian brides to be is to select your bridalwear with high attention to detail and in accordance to the different Indian wedding ceremonies. For traditional wedding ceremonies, a saree will be a beautiful option for Indian brides, as it is the epitome of grace and femininity. A saree or bridal lehenga are common choices for Indian brides to wear on her big wedding day. Opt for bright colours with elegant embroidery to stand out on your special day. Browse a variety of stunning bridal wear at Strand of Silk.

For more stunning shots by our featured photographer, Vijeta Shrivastava, be sure to check out her Facebook page as well!