The festive season is starting soon, an which means the wedding season will soon be upon us. I have written on dressing write for weddings in Shaadi Shine. But today’s focus is going to be on the important items of a bridal trousseau. Being a relatively new bride myself I understand the pressures involved in choosing the right outfits and how many outfits to take with you. So here are a few essentials and pointers:
1. Silk Saree: I think silk sarees are timeless and it is one item you can wear ten years later and still look elegance. The key is choosing at least 2, one which can help you even 10 years later and one which you can wear at the next family wedding. Traditional banarsis with contrasts always work and one south silk always give you the Bollywood bride feel.
Tip: Light saree with dark borders is younger than dark saree with light borders. Refer to Silken Beauty for your silk saree collection.
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2. Lehenga : one lehenga or Gharara or sharara is a must. As it prepares you for other close family weddings or more importantly an impromptu party in the honour of your wedding. It will be lighter and trendy, opt for net or chanderi silk, as they are more playful. You can also opt for lehenga sarees as they give the same vibe.
Tip : Ensure the lehenga you choose is very different from your wedding festivities outfits. Like you can opt for a rampuri or chatapati gharara if your nikah or other functions is banarsi or kimkhab ones.
3. Trendy suits : whether floor length or palazzo pants, at least have 2 suits of the latest trends. One can be heavy and one semi formal. While picking outfits keep in mind post wedding dinners, you want to be trendy to create the right impressions.
Tip: Refer to the latest bridal week to figure which latest style will work for you, but opt for a style which has a longevity, anarkalis have a regality to them and always look good.
4. Stonework sarees : they might be dated but now there are loads of variations. Swarovski crystals or pearl work or stones with zardosi on net or georgette sarees shimmer in the most elegant manner. Colours of nude, champagne gold, pink, coral and black look the best. My personal favourite is champagne gold or coral as they give you the best canvas to showcase the glitter and don’t overdo the shine.
Tip: Pastels give the bling the right back drop but remember to pair with a dark solid blouse of a thicker material to amp up the glamour.
5. Embroidered Suits : whether chikankari or kantha work or whichever 2 suits you as per Haath ki Safai, embroidery always showcases art and culture of its particular area. They never go out of style and work as semi formal or dressy as per fabric and the best part, work on days when you are fed up of being jewelled out. The outfit is heavy and speaks volumes by itself.
Tip: Choose embroidery particular to your native area or one which is completely different from all your other outfit. The intricacy is what showcases finery and craftsmanship of the outfit. You can also opt for one suit and one saree.
6. Jacket Suits : whether sherwani style or chinese collared kurtas, jacketed suits are always a classic. Paired with churidar or pants, they look classy but ensure the outfit is balanced so it can be eye candy and not an eye-sore.
Tip: Brocade jackets whether open or close paired with silk cigarette pants look the best in deep shades of purple, green and blue.
7. Borders : bordered outfits whether gotta patti or kundan borders or crochet laces, add a subtle elegance to even the plainest outfit. They look best when teamed with dark colours, as the contrast brings out the best of both the shades. Kundan borders work as embroidery and border both making the outfit heavy but also keeping it young at the same time.
Tip: Choose a border with lining which compliments the colour of the outfit. Satin and chiffon look best with borders, whether a long anarkali or a chiffon saree paired with a sequins blouse they create subtle sexiness with a combination of transparent and opaque.
8. Timeless : you should always have at least one masterpiece outfit, whether in embroidery, print or fabric. Something which is rare and traditional at the same time. Whether it is a designer piece, chantilly lace or even gara work saree. One piece which is an epitome of elegance and rich in terms of its intricacy. It should be one of a kind, and something which will last you forever.
Tip: choose an item whether it is heavy phulkari suit, chantilly lace saree or a jamavar weave lehenga. It is rare, and its richness makes it a priceless possession to your well-chosen collection.
9. Dress or pantsuit : gone are the days when brides just had to mingle with relatives, friends have taken a front suit and so have business associate. Evening dresses or pantsuits are a good option to keep to attend a business or friend soiree which asks for western elegance. Long dresses or jumpsuits keep you trendy chic and ensure you don’t feel to conscious if you are uncomfortable westerns.
10. Make-up Box : make up has become as essentials as clothes, especially good make up. In most traditions, the groom’s side send one but a bride needs her own shades. You alone can buy the perfect foundation and know which shades of lipstick suit your undertone. A complete make-up box consists of moisturizer, makeup removers, foundation, primers, lipsticks, glosses, lip liners, compact, blushes, eye shadows – cream and powder, mascara, kohl, eye liners and bronzers. Brushes and sponges are as essential as the make up itself.
Tip: stick to a brand which suits your skin, you can have a mix of products or choose a more natural make up such so that you find it easy to use. Get colour palettes which suit your undertone and not ones which match the colours of your outfits.
11. Stuff cases : women need handbags to keep their trinkets and other essential items at all items, whether they are important things like cellphones and wallets, or touch up cosmetics. A handbag even as small as wristlets is important at all items. One should have at least one clutch and one handbag as a part of their trousseau as they are the 2 kinds of purses you will definitely use.
Tip: studded minaudieres or sequined clutches (Bag it up Baby!), they always are the needed accessory to a formal outfit. Handbags in colours of tan or black are the most versatile and work well with all outfits and should be big enough to keep all your stuff, a complimenting wallet just adds the polish needed.
12. Shoes : Just like finding cinderella was impossible without her glass slipper, a bridal trousseau is incomplete without shoes. Pumps or sandals are your best bets, as they work as casual and formals at the same time. It is essential to have a mix of glitter and solids so they can be paired well with any of the above outfits.
Tip: Gold and silver are wedding staples, but black and nudes are as essential . The shoes can be complimentary to your bags, so they give you style. Personally I feel gold shimmer pumps, nude peeptoes , black sandals and silver kolhapuris or slide sandals are the best combinations as they give you the complete options.
Even though this blog talks more about the formal aspects of a bridal trousseau, adding some semi formals are advisable. A bridal trousseau showcases your personal style mixed with your sense of formal dressing. Even though you have to select pieces which will last, but you also have to be trendy not to be categorized as a traditional bride. The selection of colours is important, even though red, green and pink dominate the outfits, it is important that you have colours which complement your skin. An ideal mix of deep and pastels add the perfect blend of a good colour palette. Opting for at least one black outfit and one muted outfit creates the perfect balance of glamour.
Most important is the style and fit, even though most are unstitched ensure, that at least half are as they will help you the most during impromptu functions or when you just cannot find a perfect outfit for any occassion, Ensure you have a mix of suits and sarees, though sarees might not be used initially but will be later on They have their own elegance and look great at any weight or size. Lets hope these tips, help you prepare your perfect trousseau and you can be the iconic bride 🙂