12 outfits for different budgets to help you get through the big fat wedding season
And look like a dream
We’re barely getting over Diwali’s kaju katli hangover and everyone has already moved on to bridesmaid duties. As the temperature cools and patakas are replaced with shehnaai music, the million-dollar question remains the same: what do I wear?
The big Indian festive season witnessed all the ghagra cholis and anarkalis make their first appearances for Raksha Bandhan, Navratri and Diwali. But if you want your festive best to last through the upcoming wedding season, you need to intersperse old favourites with new ones. Just like your mind (and body) needs rest between serial socialising and excessive eating, your clothes need a break, too.
We may not be able to get you out of chachi’s sister’s son’s sangeet, but we can certainly help you dress for it – and the raging cocktail party you’ll be attending later.
We’ve put together a list of wedding outfits across budgets, from easy breezy kaftans for the busy bridesmaid to pre-draped sarees for the sister of the bride and co-ords for the guests who want to cheat their way through uber creative wedding dress codes (isn’t it time we gave them a rest?). Scroll through to find your ideal outfit (or outfits) so you can shine in whatever role you might be playing during the upcoming shaadi season.
Disclaimer: We have listed original prices, but if you’re lucky, you might get better deals during festive sales and offers.
12 wedding outfits across budgets to light up your wardrobe like a fuljhadi
aarké by Ritu Kumar
When you have RSVPd way too much, back-to-back dressing can quickly go from exciting to exhausting. Yes, we’re talking about the naadas of suits, the petticoats of sarees… and the hook buttons of your choli. This slinky, satin kaftan-style dress from aarké (₹3,500) that can be easily slipped on will be your saviour. The loose silhouette will keep you cool, and the embroidered neckline means no need to sweat through a necklace.
Dress it up with a pair of dainty danglers, a sparkly handbag and heels for the evening or dress it down with tiny earrings and studded slip-ons for a daytime mehendi. It’s machine washable, which makes it even easier to rewear through the hectic wedding season.
Move over gold and silver; jewel tones are the cool girl’s subtle way to embrace shine and feel dressed up. This airy chiffon saree from Swtantra (₹3,499) drapes well, so you don’t have to worry about a bulky appearance, and it’s light enough for you to take control of the dance floor away without beads of sweat running down your back.
The deep, lush colour gives you a solid base to play with, whether you want to keep the look elegant with pearls or up the ante with statement jewellery. While it requires dry cleaning, the glitz is worth the effort. It’s the perfect wedding outfit, you can style it for an engagement party or a cocktail dinner.
If there’s one time in the year where maximalism will not look out of place – it’s the wedding season – either you’ll light up the room, or be as well-lit as the room. Win, win.
This Mirraw net saree (₹2,723) will help you do just that. This sequinned number can be draped in experimental styles thanks to the light fabric. It comes with a matching blouse, but you can opt for one in a contrasting shade to really make a statement. We’d recommend toning down the jewellery with this one and putting your hair up in an up-do, so the saree can truly shine.
Word of caution: Since the net fabric is delicate, be extra careful when draping.
Daytime wedding outfits need a special kind of focus – we like them to be dressy but not OTT, and comfortable but not casual. This Heeposh Chanderi suit set’s (₹4,699) leheriya pattern and organza dupatta toes that line perfectly and will do the job for anything from a pooja, family get-togethers or a mandir visit.
Accessorise with silver or oxidised jewellery and dewy makeup to finish the look.
For those of you who want to stay away from the scratchies that come with sequins and shimmer (if bling isn’t your thing, we’ve got other options), Suta’s colour-blocked saree should be your next purchase.
The tassels on the cotton acrylic handloom saree from Suta (₹3,955) add a playful element and will save you the anxiety of choosing accessories. Pick a satin or silk blouse in a darker shade to complement the saree. The shine will make the outfit appear celebratory, while the darker colour will create visual contrast. We recommend chunky earrings and light makeup to finish the look.
Did we just find you the right low-effort wedding outfit? If you’re an oversized T-shirt and track pants kind of person, there are chances that the idea of being decked from head-to-toe in fitted silhouettes for a wedding reception is sending chills down your spine. This navy blue lined co-ord set from trueBrowns (₹4,999) is here to answer your prayers for a comfortable, chic, cheat Indian outfit.
The bat sleeves on the cotton-lurex set give your arms ample space to breathe, while the cropped trousers will ensure your trail’s not sweeping the floor clean. The elastic waistband makes it easier to put away extra samosas without feeling uncomfortable.
Make sure you splurge a little on dramatic contemporary danglers to accompany the outfit. Put your tired girl skills to use and pull your hair back in a sleek bun or low-hanging ponytail to let your look have its time in the spotlight.
Getting the pleats right and managing the pallu on a saree is nothing less than a Khatron ke Khiladi task if you’re a nine-yard noob. This pre-stitched printed silk saree, which comes with a matching belt and blouse, will take all your P woes away, make you look like a guldasta and serve as the perfect wedding outfit.
The Karaj Jaipur pre-draped saree (₹7,995) ruches upwards from the centre, giving it a dhoti-like appearance, and if you’re feeling experimental (how you can start experimenting with fashion without anxiety), now’s the time for it. If pink is too bright for you, the same saree is available in green, so you have options.
The ‘Orchid’ kurta set (₹9,955) from Saundh is ideal for understated maximalists. The lush raw silk fabric will feel like freshly waxed second skin, while the straight cut will make you appear taller.
The large graphic florals ensure it’s dressy enough for all the dos, and the long cuffed sleeves give it a vintage touch. The zari and tassels on the dupatta are like the perfect finishing vark on a delectable kaju katli.
Who said wedding outfits have to be just blingy? This Old Marigold ‘Aaliya’ pre-draped saree (₹10,000) and its vintage Bollywood feel with the white base and soft pink flowers will work well for a morning haldi or welcome brunch. Add a pair of sunglasses to it for a complete celebrity look.
You won’t have to play tug of war with the pleats since it is pre-draped, and it comes with an unstitched blouse that you can request your tailor bhaiya to stitch according to your Pinterest inspiration. For the ’70s leading lady vibes, add a latkan, tie your hair in a loose bun, and maybe add a flower or two.
It can be handwashed, or machine washed, which means you can re-wear it with a different crowd even two days later, just pair it with a different blouse to keep things exciting.
Basanti– Kapde Aur Koffee
Black is the undefeated champion for the wedding season–it can look classic and trendy at the same time. When it comes to wedding outfits, this black Basanti gharara set (₹13,995) is the perfect bridesmaid outfit with a cutout back and a heavy floral dupatta that elevates the monochromatic outfit. For when a saree is too much and an anarkali feels overdone, this dry clean-only gharara set will fulfil all your fashion goals. Wear statement pearl jewellery to complement the subtle outfit and a gajra for a soft look.
Fusion lovers, this one’s for you. Using the ladies’ room might get a bit complicated, but this ruby red jumpsuit crafted in Milano cotton is worth it.
Curvy and well-endowed ladies, if you’re looking for wedding outfits to take the focus away from the chest area, the asymmetrical overlay on this Mehak Murpana jumpsuit (₹14,500) will do just that while accentuating your waist. It doesn’t hurt that by wearing one colour from top to bottom, the eye is drawn vertically, creating a streamlined look.
The brand offers sizing up to 3XL as well as custom sizing. So you can flaunt this unique piece with utmost confidence and comfort. Accessorise with contemporary earrings, stacked rings and a glittering clutch.
Have you ever wanted to be a princess? This shimmering blue Chanderi silk saree from Suta (₹12,500) will make you feel and look like Princess Jasmine from Aladdin. The shine of Chanderi silk adds sheer elegance to the saree while the lace border elevates it.
You can buy the matching blouse from their website or pair it with one of your own. Add finishing touches with a choker, statement studs and beautiful rings. You also have two more colour options in case blue isn’t your colour – amber and ivory.