Indian weddings are very bright events, filled with ritual and celebration, that continue for several days. They are not small affairs, often with 400-1000 people attending (many of whom are unknown to the bride and groom). Though most Indian marriages are arranged, some couples in urban areas have love marriages. The Indian way of dressing has always been an icon of grandeur all over the world and to carry forward the trends.
When talking about Indian bridal outfit, the names that crop up into your mind, at the very first instance, are lehenga-choli, sari and salwar-kameez. Nowadays, most of the brides, especially in North India, prefer wearing a lehenga-choli for their wedding. The bridal lehenga is adorned with a lot of embellishments, to give it a very rich and luxurious look. In most of the cases, heavy embroidery (with silver or golden thread), stones, crystals and sequins are used to decorate the lehenga of a bride and give it a royal feel.
The dress comprises of a lehenga (skirt), choli (blouse) and dupatta/chunni (stole). The lehenga is an ankle-length skirt, which is draped around the waist, while choli is a midriff-revealing blouse, usually with tight sleeves, shirt sleeves and low neck and back. The dupatta/chunni is just like a stole, which might be slung around the neck or hung from one of the shoulders.
In terms of style, you have the option of four different cuts in your bridal lehenga skirt – fish cut, straight cut, A-line cut and flares. In the fish-cut style, the lehenga hugs your body till the knees and thereafter, it erupts into full-on flares. In the second style i.e. straight-cut, the lehenga falls parallel to your legs, just like a wrap-around skirt. The A-line cut, as the name suggests, has the lehenga skirt going in an A-line i.e. the cut broadens with the increase in the length of the skirt. Finally, we have the flared lehenga, in which the skirt is has a lot of pleats around the waist. It is very heavy, but looks extremely beautiful.
Amongst the most common fabrics that are used for a bridal lehenga is satin. Owing to its rich feel and flowing texture, it is quite popular amongst brides. Another option comprises of tissue, which gives a royal appeal to the outfit. You can also go for net, with a georgette or satin base, for creating the perfect bridal lehenga. These days, crepe and georgette have also started being included in the fabric choices for a bridal lehenga. Each of the fabrics mentioned here gives a luxurious appeal to the lehenga, thus serving the purpose of the bridal look completely.
When you talk about an Indian bridal lehenga, the first color that comes into mind is red. In fact, till some time back, this was the only color that the brides used to opt for. However, the trend changed with the passing times. These days, colors like golden copper, maroon, onion, yellow, pink and brown are also being chosen by the brides. Along with that, dual shade lehengas, like red and yellow, green and red, yellow and pink, are also enjoying increased popularity. Many of the brides, today, do not choose red color for their lehenga, deliberately. This is because they want to look different from the rest of the brides.