Anarkali is a beautiful dress representing a famous history. It got its name from a dancer in the famous Mughal Emperor Akbar’s court who won the heart of Prince Salim later known as Emperor Jahangir.
Anarkali refers to the qualities like softness, innocence and the beauty of the women wearing it. This opulent ethnic dress has embroidery on the sleeves and neckline and the other half is swayed free in the air.
That’s why people found this splendid Anarkalis creating a royal aura and ethnicity and these became famous over time.
Anarkali, the dancer, was famous due to a story. She was murdered by Akbar’s orders due to her love affair with Prince Salim. Though the story is popular, there is no actual evidence supporting it.
She was named Anarkali, i.e., meaning ‘blossoming pomegranate’ due to her exceptional beauty and amazing dancing skills.
She used to wear fitted kurtas up to the waist and ample of it flaring down to the knee. Its sleeves usually remained at full length. It was worn with a dupatta of the same material or of net and churidar pants.
The people dancing (doing mujra) in the Mughal Emperor’s court wore this type of kurta which flowed in the air while dancing and created beautiful scenic performances. These kurtas later came to be known as Anarkali suits.
Hindi Film Industry has also played a major role in elevating the popularity level of Anarkalis. From the famous movie Mughal-e- Azam, the fashion of Anarkali suits bloomed and remained in trend in the industry since the ‘70s and ’80s.
Many famous actresses started adorning Anarkali suits on various occasions. From there, it became a must-have wardrobe outfit for women.
Anarkali suits have gone through multiple transformations and are loved ethnic wear of women for different occasions.
Now with the evolving fashion trends, these come in a variety of fabric combinations, colours, designs and patterns. The fabric includes silk, cotton, velvets, muslins, brocade and organza.
Also, the unique designs such as floral motifs, heavy embroidery, gold thread work, block printing, kalamkari designs, etc. are inspired by the Mughal culture.
The time taken for the Anarkali suit to be prepared largely depends on its embellished fabric and designs, embroidery or cuts.
It may take 2-3 days to stitch an Anarkali suit and more for its decoration. Their dupatta is made of the same fabric or of the net. There are multiple fabrics available with a wide range of beads, sequins, zari, mirrors, pearls, etc.
Anarkalis stitched and embroidered by the locals by hand can cost up to Rs.800-1200. They procure the required material from the local market and thus it’s easier to stitch it. The main artistry is the embroidery on it. The range of the readymade ones can reach Rs. 25000 and above.
There are various types of Anarkali suits depending on the style, embroidery, fabric, and cuts on them. These suits have maintained to be among the top ethnic wear in the country.
Women love to wear them on different occasions due to their traditional silk, brocade, zari work, and rich embroidery in a varied range of vibrant colours such as gold, magenta, green, etc.
Anarkalis are available in much-varied artistic and appealing designs that you may get confused to opt from the list.
These include Chikankari, Kashmiri kashida, Gota, Phool Patti, Bagh, Kathiawari, Kantha stitch, Ahir, Glass, patchwork, and more.
Some of the different types of Anarkali suits based on today’s fashion trends include- floor length, layered, lehenga style, churidar, jacket style, or Anarkali suits with asymmetrical cuts, etc.
Some of them are briefly described by Albeli- Best Banarasi Saree Shop in Varanasi below so that you can have an idea about the different looks.
Modern-day wedding style Anarkali suits come under this category. These were earlier worn as flared kurtas in full length like a lehenga and not with trousers.
This is in the form of a beautifully embellished Anarkali jacket which has been a top pick for years. The colours of the jacket can be chosen according to your wish or you can go for the silvery or golden touch.
These Anarkali suits have asymmetrical cuts as suggested by the name and give a perfect touch of a blend of modern and traditional culture. It’ll be perfect for family functions or festive occasions.
Anarkali suits come in a varied range of colours and colours are mixed to create more interesting fusions.
The decorative embroidery on its neckline and sleeves and exclusive Gota work on the flares of the suits make them exclusive and special.
This artistic approach has come from the fusion of Mughal culture and international trends and made these kurtas popular among women as these suit as festive, ethnic, or even casual wear.
Due to their rich look, Anarkali suits are loved and preferred by women of all ages for various occasions such as weddings, parties, festivals, family functions or social gatherings, etc.
Anarkalis are not only appreciated by the common people but famous fashion divas are also seen in these elegant suits at different events.
Most famous designers and showrooms essentially include this ethnic wear in their collections and keep experimenting with the dress form into different fusions and colours from time to time.
Latest trends include pairing Anarkali suits with churidar, high necklines and low backs, unique patchwork at flares, etc
Anarkalis can be worn in different seasons depending on the fabric. Light fabrics such as cotton, net, and chiffon, can be worn in summer whereas silk or brocades are suitable for winters.
Any type of jewellery can be carried with these suits according to your looks as heavy or light both pair well with Anarkalis.
In addition to this, these suits need proper care and maintenance. These should be dry cleaned from time to time and kept away from sunlight.
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