New-age Indian brides prefer the lehenga to the sari!
An Indian bride is almost always visualised to be draped in a heavy, embroidered saree - be it a stunningly gorgeous Benarasi or otherwise. However, times have changed now. Over the last few years or so, girls prefer to opt for lehengas ( an elaborate skirt and blouse ensemble) for their D-Day. This preference is being noticed amongst all communities of the nation, and there has clearly been a sway in favour of the lehenga over sarees when it comes to the most important day of their life.
This long, embroidered and pleated form of skirt, teamed with the ‘choli’, is a favourite as bridal attire, mainly owing to its young appeal. It can be made of various types of fabrics, such as silk, cotton, georgette, crape, satin, chiffon, brocade etc. Each of these, brought to their best by adept stylists and designers, have their own unique elegance and individual style quotient; silk, however, remains largely, the most favoured option. The decorative stitching patterns on the lehenga is also of utmost importance to the bride who won’t settle for anything but the best for her wedding. She wants to look her prettiest self, and thus, is offered a great variety of decoration and embroidery work done on her lehenga such as Gota, Phulkari, Chikankari, Zari, Zardosi etc. These also differ in the different states of India, each of which boasts of their own artwork and aesthetic traditions. Such wide choices lure brides to ditch the age-old nine yards and bank upon the fresher and newer ‘lehenga’ look.
While an original designer lehenga, such as one from the Sabyasachi label or Manish Malhotra’s showroom come for nothing less than 2.5 lacs, if you’re a smart shopper, who has started planning for the big day well in advance, you can find the closest imitation in any of the local stores. Such shop-owners confess having in-house ‘kaarigars’, who work on perfecting the replicas, after having observed closely the outfits designed by the high-profile fashion designers. Brides these days have the option of getting custom-made lehengas for themselves, with their own design inputs. They do not enjoy this privilege with saris, and have to stay content with whatever ready made options they have. Sari is something that an Indian bride is often expected to wear post-marriage even on regular days; this might be the reason why they seek an alternative in the form of lehengas which have a very contemporary feel and youthful exuberance about them.
Red continues to reign supreme amongst the other colours, though many brides also love to experiment with different vibrant hues, such as purple, maroon, blue etc. Sources suggest that the Bollywood flicks and Hindi soaps seem to be a huge inspiration and brides derive most of their ideas and inclinations for their apparel from them! Halter necklines, tight-fitting corsets, backless cholis, and such other trends are being sported by brides who want to redefine the age-old image of a sari-clad bride. The lehengas have such intricate embellishments and multicoloured detailing that hardly can a modern bride resist their temptation. Some often come studded with crystals, silver, beads, pearls other metals to give them a striking look.
If you’re set to tie the knot soon and cannot make a choice between sari and lehenga, well, we can safely suggest you to ditch the former and go with the latter! Go for colour contrasts and take your pick amongst the abundant choices that flood the markets. Be the dazzling diva by sticking to traditions while defying the notion that since times immemorial, the bride is only dressed in a sari!