A land of rich diversity, culture, and heritage, India, has the best culture in the world. With 29 states, having equally varied traditions and practices, the growth of our heritage is unstoppable. But what makes India so different to stand out in the fashion industry? Its diversity – colors and styles. Sir Isaac Newton never knew how the spectrum would have such myriad variations in Indian fashion and its industry.
On one hand, talking about India there is no particular style. We have woven a thread of various styles to create this enormous variety of fashion widespread in the world.
The Indian Culture
“Indian culture is the most complex and colorful culture on the planet. The way people look, their language, their food, their way of dressing, their music and dance, everything changes every fifty or hundred kilometers in this country.” – Sadhguru
When fashion comes into the picture, culture is an integral part of it. To illustrate it further, India’s culture has always been a stimulant in the fashion industry. Long ago, the silk route manifested India’s influence on world fashion. And not so long time ago, the British fell in love with cotton and indigo. Cultural exchange gained momentum in unmatched terms since the British colonization of India. The Indo-Western Cultural look is one of the most demanded garments in the world and hence the Indian clothing trend continues to evolve.
The amount of influence Indian fashion has on the industry is massive. Top brands like Dior, Gucci, and Burberry usually use Indian prints in a modern way. Not forgetting about indigo and folk arts, which play a large role in the Indian Fashion Industry.
Now let us dive into some of the Indian styles people adore worldwide.
Indian Jewellery – Memory studded jewels
As a stunning Indian accessory, mangteeka, is used as bridal jewelry. It is also seen to be gaining interest as a fashion accessory that goes well with Indian and western wear. The practice of nose piercing is commonly found in Indian culture and is going on for ages. Usually, brides wear nose pins at their weddings, it is a tradition in India. According to Ayurveda, having a nose piercing near a node that is near the nostril reduces the pain during childbirth. Indian women wear it every day.
Saree – An Essence of Indian-ness
The Indian Saree is one of the oldest forms of garment which over the years has become a huge fashion influence. A saree is an unstitched drape. It varies from 4.5 to 9 meters in length and 600 to 1,200 millimeters in breadth. This garment suits the climate like India – warm, humid and tropical. The ancient Tamil and Sanskrit poetry often talked about the beauty of a female draped in a saree.
Usually, the navel is kept exposed when we wear a saree. Do you know why? We see Lord Brahma is seated on a lotus, which is sprouted from Lord Vishnu’s navel!
Similarly, Draupadi- a prominent female character from the epic Hindu mythology, Mahabharata, had an important association with saree.
Sarees are mostly geographical indicators and are specific to locations viz. Banarasi, Kanchipuram, Kota, Tussar, Chanderi, Sambalpuri, etc.
India is a colorfully cultural country. Every region here has its own unique saree draping styles ranging in fabric, draping, weaving styles, printing, and colors!
The saree can be the most revealing and the most conservative dress!
Embroidery – A Silent Storyteller
Embroidery is the art of enhancing fabrics with beads, abstract patterns, pearls, stitches, etc. Not only does the needle decorate the fabric, but it also weaves stories and folklores emerging from the surrounding region and its community. Indian embroidery inspires the studded stones, lacework, and delicate thread work. The skill and perfectionism of Indian embroidery are no joke. Their handwork and art is the only reason for India being the hub of embroidery and its richness.
As we know, handmade items are indeed close to the heart and often represent personification and luxury. As a matter of fact, these ancient Indian embroidery styles are now gaining the spotlight they deserve.
The patterns have always been simple yet complex, historical, floral, geometric, and religious. Each pattern has its own history and narrates its own story!
Gara, Kashida, Phulkari, Shisha, Gota, and Chikankari are a few embroidery techniques in India.
In conclusion, the love for Indian culture and tradition in the fashion industry is evident. Indeed, India as a proud country has made notable contributions to global fashion. And the world has successfully embraced our fashion and trends along with our heritage and traditions. Along with globalization, it has also led to a massive export in the fashion industry.
‘Sometimes it is impossible to know where you are headed without reflecting on where you came from. Understanding your heritage, your roots, and your ancestry is an important part of carving out your future.’
Let us take pride in being Indians, with an unmatched heritage and culture. India is not only heaven in disguise but also an epitome of love and grace.