India is a country that houses a plethora of cultures, religions, languages and customs. Fusion, be it of fashion, food or language, comes quite naturally to us, thanks to our immense diversity. With the spread of globalisation it was, therefore, inevitable that western ideas and styles would influence our daily lives. All of us, at one time or the other, has sported western attire such as t-shirts, shirts, suits, jeans etc. However, the trend that has swept the nation is the past few years is Indo-Western fashion. A fusion of two different kinds of fashion and culture, these trends have been picked by everyone, from celebrities to your next door neighbours. A refreshing way to dress and express yourself, Indo-Western fashion trends are easy in incorporate into your wardrobe and can be worn in day to day occasions or special events. The sheer popularity of this trend can be grasped from the knowledge that leadings fashion houses such as Manyavar and Manish Malhotra have created scores of outfits based on Indo-Western designs. Our top eleven Indo-Western fashion trends will let you create your own look, and wear it with confidence.
- Kurtas with Jeans
Let us start off with the most common, and impactful, trend of them all. Kurtas are an ethnic wear that are popular across the country and are made for every occasion. You can wear them to college and you can wear them to a wedding. The same can be said about jeans. A versatile garment, jeans have been worn by people of all ages and goes well with almost everything. And when the right kurta comes together with the right pair of jeans, it is a match made in heaven.
When you look at a Sherwani today, you might think that it is an authentic Indian look. However, your assumption would be quite off the mark. The modern Sherwani, perfect for occasions like weddings, is shorter in length than its traditional counterpart and comes with less decoration and needlework. The idea is to create a minimalist look, clean and crisp, which lets the material and the design of the Sherwani shine through.
- Nehru Jacket
Made famous by former Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, the Nehru jacket is worn by one and all. It was created by taking inspiration from the English blazer, a common article of clothing used by the people of the United Kingdom. In recent years, however, the Nehru jacket has evolved from being formal wear, to a jacket that can be worn anywhere and paired with anything.
- Jodhpuri Suit
Crisp and smart, the Jodhpuri suit has become an indispensable of an Indian man’s wardrobe. A western spin on the traditional attire of Jodhpur, the Indo-Western version of the Jodupuri suits feature shorter length, bold colours and high quality fabrics. These suits can easily be paired with pants, jeans, etc. to create a contemporary look.
- Shirts with Dhoti Pants
When you Indian ethnic wear for men, your train of thought will most certainly go towards the dhoti. A garment worn during ceremonies, weddings and social gatherings, the dhoti is a quintessential part of the Indian culture. The dhoti pant, on the other hand, is the perfect example of Indo-Western fashion at its best. Designed as a pair of pants, but having the distinctive look of a dhoti, the dhoti pant is easy to wear and gives an ethnic spin to your ensemble.
The best item to pair dhoti pants with is a shirt. A nice formal or informal shirt will create a dashing fashion statement when worn with a vibrant pair of dhoti pants.
- Patiala with Suit
The Patiala is a men’s lower garment, popularised by its use in the city of Patiala, which is its namesake. These form fitting, yet comfortable, garments have become the heart of several Indo-Western looks. Most of these trends depend on the colour combination with the Patiala, but you will not be too far off the mark if you pair them with either a Nehru suit or a Jodhpuri suit. Both suits go remarkable well with a pair of Patialas, and will create a look that is undeniably modern, but ethnic at the same time.
The Achkan might look similar to the Sherwani, but there are few salient differences. Perhaps the most striking is its wider frontal opening, as compared to the Sherwani. This is because, traditionally, the Sherwani was worn as an outer covering (like a jacket), while the Achkan was paired with a dhoti or churidar, and used a cummerbund to keep it in place. The Indo-Western version of the Achkan does away with the cummerbund, but keeps the signature frontal opening. Modern Achkans also sport accessories such as brooches, dupattas and pocket squares.
- Dupatta, Turban and Kurta Ensemble
A turban is worn as a sign of prestige, and also to commemorate an event of great importance. It is, therefore, quite common to see turbans being worn during wedding ceremonies, festivals or religious events. An Indo-Western look that is gaining popularity at a mounting pace is that of the turban, paired with a dupatta and kurta. The modern kurta, with its short length, has excellent chemistry with a dupatta that can stylishly draped over the shoulders. Combined with Patialas, dhoti pants or even jeans, the overall result is simply magnificent. Finally, finishes the look giving it a touch regal splendour.
- Asymmetrical Indo-Western Outfit
All sorts of upper wear for men, be it a suit or a shirt, traditionally ends in a uniform manner. However, a touch of contemporary aesthetics has brought forward a revolutionary trend known as the asymmetrical look. It challenges the geometric perceptions of beauty that we have and, in this case, brings Indian classics into the twenty first century. Asymmetrical Achkans or Nehru jacket sport a sharp, angular cut towards the bottom, and can be easily worn with dhotis, pyjamas, pants, etc.
- Jacquard Indo-Western Jacket and Suit
The Jacquard loom was created by French weaver Louis Marie Jacquard in the year 1804. Since then, it has created incredibly complex and interacted patterns on fabrics of all kind. Applying this technique on Indian jackets and suits gave us the Jacquard Indo-Western looks that can now be seen everywhere. Outfits created by this process have sophisticated ethic patterns stitched across them, with a uniformity that is breath taking. A fantastic accompaniment with traditional wear such as dhotis, as well as western attire like jeans, Jacquard jackets and suits are an ethnic look that are here to stay.
Zardozi is a world famous form of needlework and embroidery that is mostly done in the cities of Chennai, Lucknow, Bhopal and Farrukhabad. While zardosi is also practiced in countries such as Turkey, Kuwait and Azerbaijan, Indian zardozi has always been immensely popular. There is also a historic precedent for zardosi being used in Indo-Western outfits. In the year 1903, Vicereine Lady Curzon wore the iconic peacock dress, featuring zardosi work by the craftsmen of Delhi & Agra, to celebrate the coronation of King Edward VII. The gown immediately became a global sensation due to the astounding precision of its needlework. Currently, Lady Cuzon’s peacock dress holds a regal position at the Fashion Museum in Bath.
Zardosi tends to features prominently in Indo-Western attire, as the embroidery fits in quite nicely with the contemporary look of jackets and suits. A zordosi suit, together with a dhoti and accessories such as fashionable jutis and a dupatta, is a look like no other.
Indo-Western attires are a remarkable way to embrace the global outlook, while staying true to our roots. As similar trends in fashion begin to gain popularity, we can also expect more stellar combinations of Indian favourites with the latest in Western haute couture. This is an exciting time for Indian fashion, and an incredible opportunity to have some phenomenal outfits added to your collection.