Pongal is a time for festivity, joy and celebration but it’s also a time to flaunt the best of your wardrobe. Take this opportunity to support the fine craftspeople of the country by donning weaves, bling and more by them. After all, who knows their way around Indian attire than those who make it from scratch?
Here we have a few ways you can shine this Pongal without too much hassle — we have everything for both the traditional queens and the trendsetting divas! From outfits to accessories to shoes and even hairdos, there’s nothing we’ve missed out on.
Mom fashion, back in vogue
Those sarees with 6 inch borders we failed to acknowledge as fashion are back in vogue now, like this beauty by Tulsi Silks. Give a new spin to it by choosing a different style for your blouse — maybe a shirt blouse or a crop top. Or for the less brave, an embroidered, well tailored blouse never fails. While mass printed silk sarees are a cheaper option, handloom Kanjivarams stand apart for their intricate design and durability.
“If people are uncomfortable with sarees, they can design a pretty dress out of a silk saree and accessorise it with statement temple jewellery earrings,” says Dakshana Rajaram, founder and designer, DAKSH.
Temple of tradition
Temple jewellery and silk sarees are a match made in heaven. Keep it simple and do not turn up like a bride — just a gold necklace paired with matching earrings will do very well to show off your saree. While you can choose silver jewellery with gold plating for this, you can also get an artisan to customise your jewellery, making it all the more precious and valuable, something that you can pass down to the generations to come.
Happy, bright feet
Although shoes that go with sarees are quite limited, chunky shoes or heavy, black wedges are a no-no and can take the sheen off your look,” says Dakshana. Strappy, sparkling heels go well with sarees, or for the ones who opt for comfort over style, bejwelled, embroidered juttis like these ones by Pastels and Pop are aplenty in the fashion scene today.
Blocks are the way to go
An interesting twist to the accessories would be a Gujrati coin purse with bright block print design. These handmade purses will be a great addition to your wardrobe, as it can give a desi touch even to your western ensembles. These handprinted purses are available in different prints like Ikat and Kalamkari.
Hair in buns are back in fashion and we thank the fashion gods for it. Toss your hair in a neat bun, pin some jasmine flowers around it, and forget about it for the rest of the day and enjoy the festivities. Braiding of hair is in vogue too, you can opt for fishtail, French or looped braids to look more modern. Stick to what you think looks best with sarees when it comes to makeup, you can never go wrong with a light smokey eye.
The love for gold heavy borders and bright colours is eternal, but this Pongal why not go for a more a understated elegance? Sabyasachi’s collection wowed everyone last year, and some of the favourites were the floral sarees. Even Deepika Padukone also sported a couple. You could find something similar at local handloom exhibitions too!
Choker it up
We all know how popular chokers have been for the past year and they still continue to be a rage. Take the trend forward with a simple kundan or pearl choker to add a bit of oomph to your outfit without going over-the-top. Support the age-old traditional jewelers who are experts in kundan work to not only help them but to get a priceless experience in a necklace.
The Simpler, the better
Now that you have a unique stand-out saree and bedazzling accessories, it’s time to look at the shoes. This is where you want to keep it simple yet elegant. A strappy heel in a trendy rose gold to go along with your saree can bring the whole ensemble together. Case in point — these gorgeous Steve Madden shoes. If you want to run around and be comfortable throughout the festivities, opt for a kitten heel instead.
All clutch-ed up
Clutches are not only convenient to carry but also really cute! A golden embellished one, like this Amolika clutch, could do the trick for you. Not only will it go with the entire outfit but will probably serve you well through the years. Nothing lasts like an original handcrafted one, so if you’re not the kind to flaunt a designer bag, handmade is your best bet.
Bun’s the way
Your hairstyle could make or break your attire and we definitely want it made. Keeping with the theme of simple elegance, a slick bun with a middle or even centre parting would be flawless, just like these Sabyasachi models. You could even keep it a little messy to be effortless chic. Makeup should be kept hassle-free and light, to give you a dewy sun-kissed look and for the attention to be on your whole look.