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Dupattas-to notch up your outfit

‘Dupattas’ are well-known to us, Indian women.  We grew up seeing the stylish ones worn at festive occasions and the ordinary ones at home, even worn on ‘night wear’ by some women, which always intrigued me and still does…anyway, the purpose of this post is bigger than researching why a ‘dupatta’ is needed over some night wear! So, to continue… This versatile piece of cloth covers, styles, and protects from heat and dust when needed and helps you to easily notch up an outfit, when the occasion demands.

Since my niece’s wedding is a few weeks away, and while I am sorted for the main wedding (planning to drape my sister’s ‘gadhwali’ saree), I am still searching for that stunningly gorgeous ‘dupatta’, something that is glamorous, handwoven and traditional, just right for the ‘sangeet’, yet,  easy to handle, while also helping me add that ‘oomph’ factor to the otherwise simply and plain suit.  So, let the search begin:

‘Dupatta’ Styles

All kinds of ‘dupattas’ exist in this world. The pure linen and cotton ones, to the more stunning hand-woven ones with the brightest of colours,  embroidery, weaves and designs. Since, the purpose of my ‘dupatta quest’ is to find one for a festive occasion, I am short-listing some hand-woven prettiness of a  ‘paithani’ and  a few breathtakingly ‘banarasi’ ones. What do you think?

In love with this ‘Paithani’ dupatta ; sold by Benzerworld 
Banarasi is all classy and a piece of history at the same time; this one from The Loom 
Pretty in black with the banarasi weaves, found on Pinterest;  style put together by Bridelan 
Stunningly beautiful handwoven banarasi dupatta; found at Talking Threads


Resplendent in a green banarsi dupatta by Ekaya Banaras; Sold on Jaypore
Twirl and whirl in the pink banarasi dupatta – Via
The quintessential royal look in a red banarsi dupatta via
‘Dupatta’ and Bollywood

Apparently, the ‘dupatta’ has been around since the times of the Indus Valley civilisation. However, it’s life has got a lot more interesting when Bollywood associated it with depicting ‘romanticism’ or sometimes ‘agony’ too! Though, for now, I’ll just mention a song of years gone by, that focussed on the ‘dupatta’ and used it for depicting joy and romance. Since then, umpteen songs have been written and filmed using the beautiful ‘dupatta’.

I think I will be settling for a nice traditional ‘dupatta’ with the ‘banarasi’ weaves, that has been created painstakingly by hand and will certainly do complete justice to the occasion.

I know I say it often, but I must say it again…. nothing machine made will come close to the beauty of a handmade piece…this ‘dupatta’ of mine will sure be a heirloom piece, so I intent to keep it safe and pass it on to the next generation…So, you too, please, shop handmade, support artisans and the age-old crafts of India…be notjustashopper!

Shilpa xx

Cover Image: Via Ekaya




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