Men's Ethnic and Eastern Wear

For years, the textile market in India had women at its epicentre. However, the current scenario has seen a lot of brand and designers creating a lot of wardrobe options for men as well. In India, upscale designers like Shantanu & Nikhil and Sabyasachi have entire collections dedicated to contemporary men’s wear.

In ancient India, kings and other members of royal families used to adorn themselves with heavy embellished outfits. Angarakha, achkan or sherwani, bandhgala, kurta, lungi, dhoti and pajama were traditional wardrobe elements for men. Kings had their outfits made with linen, silk and brocade and had lot of golden work that reflected their wealth and status in the society.

With the passage of time, shirts and trousers from western countries penetrated the Indian market, through the British influence. Shirts and trousers paired with waist coats and blazers, thus, became very popular and were associated with higher socio-economic status. After Independence, these western garments became the official formal attires for offices, thus, replacing the Indian traditional outfits. Yet, the allure for the traditional ensembles remains – and that’s the reason – they are the preferred choice for all special occasions, like festivals and weddings.

Present Day Scenario

As traditional Indian outfits like dhoti, angarakha, bandhgala, jodhpuri suits and kurtas started getting contemporary makeovers by designers, the market for men’s wear picked up quickly. The wedding market in menswear too has seen a huge resurgence, what with many ethnic-wear, traditional and Eastern-wear garments returning to the fashion-forefront. Here are some contemporary and fusion wardrobe staples for men:

Sherwani: A sherwani is a long garment resembling a coat. It is usually worn over a kurta and teamed with churidar or dhotis. It is the formal attire for weddings and festivals in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Middle-East Asian countries. These days, sherwanis are available in contemporary shades including pink and blue.

Of Delighted

I am posted in an Indian small town, the campus is a good 5 kms away from markets - buying latest stuff is dependent on my visits to my native city - which is not often. So I depend on for sarees, anarkalis etc. I also bought a simple lehenga recently when I had to attend a colleague's wedding & may I take the liberty to praise myself ;-) - I looked smashing. In fact, a senior professor genuinely got concerned - telling me that looking this attractive may pose danger to my safety in this hinterland!! Thank you for bringing happiness to my cottage door.

-Raima Shrinath | Mahendragarh, Haryana

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