Sonam Kapoor for Harper’s Bazaar Bride June-July 2016
Do you remember that scene in Aisha when Amrita Puri (as Shefali) talks about Kareena Kapoor’s lehenga in Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham “jo na red hota hai aur na maroon” and she wants to wear “wohi wala same to same ditto lehenga” on her wedding day? Or when Alia Bhatt (as Kavya) refuses to get married unless her family buys her a “Kareena wala designer lehenga” in Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania? If you are a true-blue bollywood fan, chances are you would have loved these scenes because they are just so relatable. After all, haven’t we all, at some point in our lives, fallen in love with a sari or lehenga that we saw in a movie, and then proceeded to make countless trips to Lajpat Nagar, Karol Bagh, and of course our trusted tailor, so we can wear a similar look?
Well, if this sounds familiar, here’s some good news for you this wedding season! We have narrowed down the most popular lehenga trends among celebrities right now and scoured the internet for similar styles, so you don’t have to go anywhere and can just shop from the comfort of your homes. Looking like a movie star just got a lot easier!
1. Lehengas With Intricate Embroidery
Nearly all the collections at India Couture Week last year had pieces with detailed embroidery on them, so it comes as no surprise that we have been seeing lots of celebrities wearing beautifully handcrafted lehengas with zardosi, gotta patti, dabka, and phulkari work. Kalamkari and three-dimensional embroideries with embellishments such as floral appliqués, beads, pearls and sequins are also very popular right now. When it comes to the patterns, floral and paisley continue to be a safe choice, but we are also seeing more unconventional motifs such as birds, especially the peacock, butterflies, elephants, and other interesting designs inspired by the Mughal era and architecture. Our absolute favorites are the lehengas by Neeta Lulla (as seen on Pooja Hegde above) though, which elaborately depict Indian musical instruments like the tabla, sarangi, and the sitar using golden threads.
2. Lehengas With Long Kurtas & Jackets
Teeny-weeny skimpy cholis are a thing of the past; we are now seeing celebrities opting for a more conservative look by pairing their lehengas with long kurtas, jacket-style blouses, and overcoats. They are super flattering for women of all shapes and sizes because you can choose the length of your kurta—starting from mid-thigh (see Alia Bhatt & Kareena Kapoor) to floor-grazing like Karisma Kapoor in Sabyasachi above. Pair a long, straight fit kurta or a structured jacket over a voluminous lehenga and you are guaranteed to look like royalty! If you are on the shorter side and worried about drowning in all that fabric, opt for deep-v neck jackets that show a bit of cleavage instead of bandhgalas and mandarin collars. You can also layer a sheer jacket over your regular blouse and lehenga or go for a silhouette that slits open from the front to show a bit of skin.
3. Lehengas With Striking Sleeves
Backless blouses hogged the limelight for several years, so it’s refreshing that now it’s all about the sleeves. Accentuated sleeves are a really big trend as far as western wedding gowns are concerned, but it’s really interesting to see how designers are now adopting this trend to make Indian wear look more contemporary. Blouses with embroidery just on the sleeves, off the shoulder blouses, and sheer sleeves seem to be the favorites among celebrities, but bell sleeves and one-shoulder styles are also slowly picking up. Besides this, if you love this trend, you can also look for fluttery or ruffle sleeves, streamer sleeves, sculptural sleeves, and sleeves with cutouts or jaali work—basically, anything that features them as the focal point of your lehenga.
4. Lehengas With Understated Colors
Indian bridal and festive wear is usually associated with rich and vibrant colors, so it’s good to see that more and more designers, and celebrities as a result, are embracing minimalism and promoting a more muted color palette. As Tarun Tahiliani said when speaking about his last couture collection, “I love pastels and I have used a lot of pale because I feel if you do your hair and make-up nicely, pale adds a subtlety to the look. I think subtlety is what being contemporary is about.” We have been spotting a lot of lehengas with zari work or delicate, but colorful embroidery in colors such as pure white, ivory, cream, beige, and champagne, as well as in pastels such as ice/powder blues, lavender, blush/oyster pink, peaches, and seafoam/pistachio green. When embellished with crystals, sequins, stone and mirror work, these lehengas appear anything but dull. In fact, they look elegant and a class apart.
5. Plain Lehengas With Statement Blouses
In one more step towards minimalism, another trend that we have spotted lately is the pairing of plain lehengas with blouse designs that completely steal the show. We’re talking cape/poncho style blouses, corset blouses, crop tops, peplum blouses, button-down blouses, cropped/bomber jackets, etc., with eye-catching embroideries and embellishments. We particularly love this trend for its value for money; Mix and match the blouse with different lehengas and saris or simply create a fusion look by teaming it up with denims, maxi skirts, and dresses.
** This post is brought to you by Craftsvilla.