India can be defined as the land of diverse religions and culture. Our country is full of different colours which reflect in the different kinds of traditions and cultures. Be it the flamboyant north to the simple yet elegant south, each and every religion is absolutely beautiful. Wedding in India showcases the different religions in the best possible way, each and every religion have different rituals which are absolutely beautiful and a delight to one’s eyes. What do you think is the most prominent feature of any Indian Wedding? The Bride and Groom Of course. And what makes them so flashy that they catch attention of everyone who attends their wedding? It’s the Wedding Attires. In this article I shall talk about the wedding attire of the bride which is totally connected with its religion, tradition and culture.
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Come with me on a journey, where I shall show you the colours of India in the different types of Bridal Wedding Attires.
Bridal Attire: A Dream For Every Bride
“A dream for every bride”, it truly is! isn’t it? Every girl dreams of getting married one day and have a lavish wedding. But this dream of hers isn’t going to be complete without that perfect wedding dress. I think each girl somewhere thinks of her wedding dress, she imagines herself look like a princess. One needs to understand the local culture in order to appreciate and understand the finer aspects of any bridal dress. It is always a lovely experience to see an Indian bride totally decked up in bridal regalia.
Earlier girls didn’t have many choices when it came to colour, mostly red was the colour of the wedding attire for brides. But in the current era, girls are experimenting with lots and lots of colours, like pink, blue, green and even black. Attire is just not about clothes, they match it up with heavy jewellery and accessories. Depending upon the religion and customs the girl belongs to, bridal attires are also different from each other. Some are simple and some are absolutely heavy. Some prefer only gold jewellery and some prefer imitations too.
Selecting that right wedding attire requires a lot of work, girls can go into thousands of shops to find their dream dress. And finding one isn’t the end of it, then comes in the stitching and fitting. It has to be perfect, if anything goes wrong the entire dream for the girl can shatter.
Bridal Attire: Red Was The Colour
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Be it sarees, lehengas or Salwar Kameez, when it came to wedding dress the colour earlier used to always be red for most of the religions in India. But red colour isn’t a compulsion today, with the variety of colours available today the options have become endless. These days’ modern brides choose to wear different colours on their wedding, they choose bold colours with rich patterns. These days’ bridal wear is more about showcasing that style statement, but earlier it was only about the girl caring her family values and customs draped in that red colour. I believe that this current era is all about experimentation, as each bride aims at looking different from the crowd.
Different Types Of Indian Bridal Wear
Depending upon the region the bride either wears a lehenga or a saree. Hindus consider red to be the most auspicious colour, while white is for the Christians. In the southern part of India silk sarees are preferred for the brides but coming to the north and other parts of India Ghagra Choli and Odhni and Lehenga are preferred. As I said India is full of different colours when it comes to different states, and the bridal wears showcase some of its colours at its best. So let me take you through the different kinds of wedding attires worn by beautiful brides across our divergent country India.
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1. Maharashtrian Bride
A typical bride from Maharashtra wears a saree which is called Nauvari. What is Nauvari? It is a saree which is nine- yard long and one has to drape it in a very specific way. Interesting thing which makes Nauvari different from other regular sarees is that one doesn’t need a slip or petticoat beneath it. I wonder how they tie it then, but whatever the case is this wedding attire looks absolutely lovely. Showcases the beauty of the bride in the simplest way. Patahani sarees are the most popular bridal costume in the Maharashtra.
2. Rajasthani Bride
Odhni deserves a special mention when it comes to Rajashthani bridal wear, it is the most integral part in the attire of a Rajasthani bride. Odhni is a long 3 X 2 meters’ piece of cloth which is teamed up with lehengas or the Ghagra and Cholis. Odhni holds a very important place in a married Rajasthani women life as she wears if for all special occasions later after getting married. The Odhni of a bride is an exclusive piece of cloth which is hand embroidered and it is treasured by every woman until she lives.
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3. South-Indian Bride
I have attended many south Indian weddings; the south Indian brides carry elegance in those simple Kanjeevaram saris. What makes them look even more wonderful is the traditional gold jewellery, the jewellery adds to their complete look. Other very important part of the total attire is flowers; all south Indian brides decorate their hairs with beautiful coloured flowers.
4. Muslim Bride
The traditional wear of Muslim brides is known as Sharara, however there is no specific colour defined for them and they are free to choose any colour of their choice and liking. Muslim brides still prefer to wear their traditional wear and team it up with an extraordinary head accessory known as the Jhoomar.
5. Indian catholic & Christian brides
For both Indian catholic and Christian brides the white veil forms to be an integral part of their attire. White colour is a symbol of purity and this colour adds totally to the elegant look of the bride. Catholic and Christian brides look simply gorgeous in their white gowns and simple jewellery.
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6. Kerala Bride
Keralite brides wear bright colour Kanchepurum saris for their wedding. These days they also wear crepe, silk and georgette saris with beautiful handiworks like zari, mirror work, zardosi, cut work, sequence, kasab, patchwork, pearl work, and kundan. Teamed up with lots of Gold jewellery the Keralite brides look absolutely like Goddess Lakshmi.
7. Kashmiri Bride
Kashmiri bride showcases the traditions of Kashmir and they look as beautiful as Kashmir itself. The bridal wear of a traditional Kashmiri bride includes a lehenga along with a Kalpush. Kalpush is basically a cap which is folded around 3-4 times with a cotton linen inside. Then a Zoojh is wrapped over the Kalpush which is a white colour cloth. Together the Kalpush and Zoojh are called Tarang. This classic attire looks even more beautiful with this classical Kashmiri Jewellery called the Dejharooor.
8. Punjabi Bride
The traditional attire of a Punjabi bride is called Phulkari. These Phulkaris are designed with a lot of details, and they look even more beautiful matched up with kaliras, chudhas, nath, tikka and payal. Punjabi weddings are mostly very flashy, and our Punjabi brides add even more light to it with their fantastic attire and makeup.
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9. Bengali Bride
Bengali brides are a symbol of true beauty, their gorgeous eyes and curly hairs are gift from God isn’t it? The brides from Bengal mostly wear silk saris, traditionally the preferred colours used to be red, pink and maroon. But these days our bong girls are experimenting with other colours too, like green, orange and blue. Katha work saris and banarasi silk saris are preferred by Bengalis. Along with these hand embroidered beautiful saris, our brides wear beautiful ethnic gold jewellery. What makes them look even more beautiful is the mukut on her head and the white and red dots over her forehead with that round red bindi, trust me they look awesome.
10. Tamil Bride
Talking about a Tamil Bride now, traditionally the Tamilians emphasize on wearing Kanchipuram silk sari for their wedding. The Kanchipuram saris are extremely beautiful saris and are a symbol of a Tamilian bride. Kanchipuram is a six-yard-long sari with beautiful gold thread embroidery on it.
11. Gujarati bride
The attire of a Gujarati bride is totally different when compared to the rest. A typical Gujarati Bride wears a georgette sari which has very heavy sequin and embroidery work. What makes this saree look exceptional is the style of draping where the Pallav faces the front. Gujratis have two types of saris that can be worn on a wedding, first is Panetar (white sari along with a red colour Bandhini border) and the second is Gharchola (red Bhandini sari with golden checks and Bhandini motifs). Gujaratis consider red to be an auspicious colour, this is the reason the brides are dressed up in in red colour.
Moving across one state from the other, you will see how our bridal attires vary from each other. Depending on the region and also the kind of traditions and customs influence the wedding attire of the Bride and even the Groom. These days Brides want a bit of that so called modern element in their wedding dresses. So we can see a lot of experiments happening all across the country. While North Indians are loving Kanchipurams, the South Indians are loving Lehengas. But with all the experiments going around, be it colours, drapes and motifs I feel sari is the most elegant attire for any Indian Bride. Dressed in bright and cheerful colours our Indian Brides beauty gets highlighted and it also reflect on their glowing faces. Jewellery plays an important role, be it heavy gold or those simple ornaments, but the attire does all the magic for them.
Photo by ||-SAM Nasim-||