The wedding season is on in full swing and from the many outfits which can be worn for the occasion, one outfit that never really goes out of style, when it comes to traditional and festive gatherings is the saree. From your mom’s wedding saree, to your grandmother’s favourite cotton pallu, and your aunt’s coveted collection of silk sarees, the sentiment attached to this piece of clothing brings back memories and creates a wave of nostalgia for most of us.
For decades, the saree has seen a phenomenal change in the way it is draped and styled, to the kind of blouses we pair with it and the myriad of colours and patterns used. From traditional draping styles to a new-age culture of draping that is more in sync with the millennial wardrobe, one that is bound to make our ancestors question whether the “saree” is even existent in its original form anymore; we have come a long way!
In an attempt to understand the evolution of the saree drapes over time, Liva Fluid Fashion got together with Nikaytaa, a popular Sari Researcher & Founder of The Indian Draping Co., to explore innovative ways to drape a saree while keeping its “Indian roots” intact.
Time to pause your search for party wear sarees online, as Nikaytaa walks us through five unique saree drapes that will make head turns at those upcoming wedding parties.
The Odisha Pants Drape
Worn by the dancers of Odisha, this drape is functional and can be worn in a variety of ways (Read: jumpsuit, twisting the pallu into a rope and draping it across the waist as a belt, or simply across the shoulder)
Did You Know: With the Odisha Pants Drape allows you to have unrestrained movement, so you no longer have to worry about managing your saree.
The Free-Flowing Drape
Also known as Venuka Gundaram drape, this drape has its roots in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh, and it is popular among the agricultural community folkwomen. It effortlessly adds grace to your posture because of the pleats that surround the waist as opposed to the conventional style of draping a saree. You can always use the pallu in a different way; for instance, drape it across the neck for an off-shoulder look.
Did You Know: This drape allows you to breathe, making it perfect for a hot and humid day! Your essential 9am-to-9pm go-to is here.
The Mermaid Style Drape
The East Champaran drape is one that is worn by the tribal communities in Bihar and is very similar to a mermaid style, except that there is free-flowing cloth around the legs that allows for comfortable movement!
Did You Know: You could wear the drape as a skirt and pair it with a shirt for a classic Sunday brunch look. Let’s bring on the mimosas, ladies!
The One-Shoulder Drape
The name says it all! The one shoulder drape is a variation of the Nivi drape and is similar to the conventional pleating style. Tie the pallu across one of the shoulders to add the necessary drama to the outfit and cinch a belt around the waist to enhance the look further.
Did You Know: The one-shoulder drape ensures having your hands full is nothing to worry about. It is ideal for those who like to be hassle-free when it comes to their outfit!
The Lehenga Drape
Inspired by the festive season, the sari is draped as a skirt with pleats all around the body and the pallu across the shoulder, similar to the one-shoulder drape. Take the style quotient one notch higher by securing the pallu with a belt for a flattering silhouette.
Did You Know: No petticoats were used in the draping of these sarees!
“This was my first collaboration with LIVA Fluid Fashion. The sarees made from nature-based fibres were soft and flowy and felt like butter while draping them. The natural ‘fall’ of the fabric looked stylish on different body types and personalities. The unique colours of the sarees and the soft fabric added charm and grace to each of the drapes I demonstrated. I feel sarees are a perfect choice for the festive season in that they are eco-friendly, easy to wear and carry, and very versatile,” said Nikaytaa after what she claims was a beautifully enriching experience.
We encourage you to experiment with the above styles demonstrated by Nikaytaa. Which is your favorite saree drape? Do let us know in the comments below.