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Understanding the Salwar Kameez Inside-Out

October 28, 2021

Understanding the Salwar Kameez Inside-Out

There are a million and one reasons to like the Indian Salwar Kameez.

It is a simple and versatile type of dress that can make anyone look classy and decent without even trying. On top of that, it can also fit into every kind of occasion, whether it’s a wedding, a friend’s birthday, college graduation, and what have you.

The Salwar Kameez is as traditional as it gets although newer salwar designer suits tend to incorporate trendy styles and designs. We love the salwar kameez and no matter how much we have, we still want to have more.


Salwar Kameez - An Indian Dress

Salwar Kameez - Type of an Indian Dress

What is the Indian Salwar Kameez?

The salwar kameez is a two-piece attire comprised of the salwar and kameez.

 While the salwar is a pajama-like trouser, the kameez is the shirt or tunic. Most times, the dress is paired with a dupatta to add a complementary touch to the salwar kameez outfit.

In designing the salwar, it is made to have a narrow bottom and a wide top.

The narrow part widens up to the waist where it is then gathered into pleats or a waistband so that it looks wide and baggy. Oftentimes, it is designed to be narrow in which case it is called a churidar.

The kameez, on the other hand, is usually a long shirt with side seams (chaak) below the navel. Finally, there is the dupatta to complete your look in the salwar kameez. The dupatta is a shawl or scarf that you can easily wear over your head, drape across your chest, or on one or both shoulders.

History & Evolution of the Indian Salwar Kameez

The Salwar Kameez is believed to have originated from the legendary Mughal Empire era during the Islamic Turko-Iranian rule of the Delhi sultanate. These dresses have, however, come a long way from traditional cuts of the past.

Today’s designer salwar suits now feature gorgeous necklines, set-in sleeves, and a variety of other western-inspired styles for this ancient dress that keeps evolving. Nowadays, designers are exploring all kinds of styles and incorporating decorative items of all kinds from mirror work to sequin embroideries and more.

The modern salwar suits now feature different stitching styles and shapes.

And while the length of the kameez has always been knee-length, today’s kameez now come in varying lengths and different cuts with the younger generation seemingly in favor of the Patiala salwar suit. That salwar suit has a kameez that’s well above knee length alongside a Patiala-style salwar.

Why do women love the Salwar Kameez?

Since being first worn during the Mughal Empire era, the Salwar Kameez has never lost its grip on the Indian women’s fashion scene, still enjoying that attention till today. The simplicity, comfort, versatility, and gracefulness of this dress are some of the reasons we just can’t get enough of it.

Up until now, it’s more prominently worn in Punjab where it’s loving called the Punjabi suit. But the Salwar Kameez’s love is not restricted to only one part of India. Salwar suits are worn all over the country and no matter how many we already have, we still keep falling in love with these dresses all over again.

The Popularity of Salwar Kameez

Salwar kameez, an Indian traditional dress, is popular across the country - from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. These days, the three-piece of clothing is no longer exclusive to the Punjab region. Due to the rising fashion trends and the iconic portrayal of this graceful outfit in Bollywood movies, women of all ages and walks of life prefer to wear salwar kameez.

The salwar kameez's popularity can be attributed to its comfort and ease of wearing. It doesn't matter what the occasion is, whether it's a family gathering, a sangeet ceremony, a house-warming party, or a puja ceremony, the salwar kameez is an Indian traditional outfit that suits every occasion. Not to mention, salwar kameez is the go-to outfit for every festival. Salwar kameez has become synonymous with festive wear in the last decade.

Types of Salwar Kameez 

The trend for this age-old silhouette keeps returning season after season with a new design. Thus, this traditional Indian outfit remains fashionable forever. Fashion designers in India give this classic traditional dress new twists through embellishments, cut, design, or silhouettes. We have seen numerous designs over the years, and there are a few which have remained in style forever.

  • Classic Churidar Kurta: Churidar kurta sets are an obvious choice for women who wish to wear all Indian ethnic wear. They are elegant, graceful, and extremely comfortable. It includes kurtas with straight hems that reach the knees and pants which are longer than the legs. Due to the excess length of the pants, the bangle-like folds at the ankle give a beautiful appearance revealing the leg's contours. A matching dupatta completes the look. The dupatta enhances the traditional look of this Indian outfit.
    Churidar Indian Suit for Women

    A Churidar Indian Suit for Women

  • Sharara Suit: What makes a sharara suit different from the traditional salwar kameez design? It is beautifully designed and adorned with wide-legged pants. Sharara suits usually consist of a short, straight-fitting kurta, flared pants and a dupatta. This traditional dress draws inspiration from the Mughal era and is extremely popular in many South Asian countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, etc. The dress is an excellent outfit for ceremonial events and weddings.
    Sharara Suit in Red

    A Sharara Suit in Red for Women

  • Palazzo Kurta Set: Looking for a smart and stylish Indian dress for every occasion? This season, don't miss out on the fabulous palazzo kurta sets that are trending on fashion charts. Palazzo sets are versatile outfits for women of all shapes and sizes, whether you need an embellished outfit for your sister's haldi ceremony or chic office wear. The outfit includes a long straight-fit kurta paired with straight-cut pants. Dupattas are optional over this outfit.
    Palazzo Style Indian Suit

    A Palazzo Style Indian Suit

  • Punjabi Suit: It is the ideal outfit for wedding ceremonies and festivals. As the name suggests, this outfit hails from the land of Punjab. Embroidery in captivating colors embellishes the kurta and dupatta. There is a fitted short kurta along with a loose salwar pant with pleated detailing and a heavily embroidered dupatta in this salwar kameez style.
    Punjabi Suit in Orange

    A Punjabi Suit from Patiala in Orange

  • Indo-Western Suits: All these variations give you a bit of both worlds -- the Kurta with Dhoti Pants, the Kurta with Trouser Pants, and the Kurta with Palazzo Set. Indo-Western suits are a fusion of traditional and modern design. In recent years, these salwar kameez styles have gained immense popularity.
    Indo-Western Suits

    An Indo-Western Suits



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