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What to wear to an Indian Wedding - Decoded

Published on: 2019-05-11
what to wear to an indian wedding

The wedding season is right around the corner. Amongst all the save-the-dates and wedding invites you received in the past year - you've definitely got an invite for an Indian Wedding! If you grew up in close affinity to the Indian culture, you might already have this one figured out. For those who have not, this would mean you've got some serious planning to do. Figuring out what to wear to an Indian wedding is no child's play. ;)

Should you be wearing something cultural? Or is it okay to wear one of your work suits? What are the colors that will go best? How should one shop for an Indian wedding? Could you wear a tuxedo to an Indian wedding?

We know you've got a ton of questions. With the help of our many friends here in Houston & amazing insights all the way from India, we have tried to summarise the most important things that will get you all dapper for an Indian Wedding in no time!

Top 2 Things to Consider

1) Invitation
Firstly, Indian weddings are a bit of an auspicious and a lengthy affair lasting anything between 2-7 days. Secondly, the wedding dates are often decided by the family priests (as per the Indian wedding calendar). You want to carefully evaluate your invitation to lay out a road map for this fun-filled roller-coaster!

2) Setting
An Indian wedding is the kind of place where you can expect to see a lot of color and culture coupled with dancing, feasting, and traditional festivities. Depending on the ceremony the setting & attire can change completely. So it often helps to exercise prudence and be better prepared in understanding the cultural differences and annotations that certain colors/clothing can create.

Decoding the Invitation

If you've received an extended invitation, you are most like to witness many pre-wedding ceremonies. These being the auspicious Ganesh Sthapana (or a Puja), a Haldi/Pithi ceremony, the Mehendi (application of henna) and the Sangeet (just like the Rehearsal Dinner coupled with dancing and music).

You need to plan your outfit or outfits depending on the extent of invitation, and, not attract unwanted attention away from the groom and groomsmen with, say, a bright red shirt.

Pro-tip: An Indian wedding in most of the cases would also mean that you should put away your casual clothes, i.e. your tee and denim. You could also put away your all White Suit/Black Suit (Black is frowned upon in South Indian Weddings and White is a funeral color in the North Indian culture).

Learning What to Wear to an Indian Wedding is Simple

Traditional Indian weddings are indeed gala affairs where the outfits need to suit the occasion. The trick to dress for an extended Indian wedding invitation is to go from minimal or simpler ensembles towards more formal or dressier ensembles as the events proceed. With most of the pre-wedding affairs (barring the Sangeet) taking place during the day time, you can't go wrong with pastel color choices of beige, brown, green and blue.

Day time Events: (Poojas / Pre-wedding ceremonies)

Opt for outfits like a Nehru Jacket (the Indian Waistcoat), a round-collar Shirt or a classic Kurta (Round Collar Henley Shirt). Add a pop of tradition with a pocket square or a scarf.

Whenever you find yourself wondering what to wear to an Indian wedding, especially the day-time ceremonies, picking a slightly Indian ethnic look is the best option. It will not only fill the heart of your hosts with warmth but also set you up to have a gala time. Your effort would 100% be noticed by everyone and you will in an instant feel at home.

Evening Gala Events: (Sangeet / Reception)

The Sangeet (or the Rehearsal Dinner) and for the Wedding/Reception:
You'd be perfectly fine wearing your Navy Blue Suit. Moreover, Indian weddings also give you options to wear statement pieces such as the 3 Piece Grey Birdseye Suit or the midnight blue tuxedo. These evergreen options are every bit classy and appropriate.

However, if the invite specifically mentions an Indian dress code, then you're looking for a sophisticated option. A refined Jodhpuri Suit paired with classic white pants is certainly a timeless look that fits the bill. This is one outfit that will turn heads - guaranteed!

Similarly, you could also opt for a traditional Achkan look for the sangeet / wedding ceremony. Like your Bandhgala Suit, you can combine your Achkan with white tapered pants to complete the look. This would surely earn you more brownie points, we promise!

It is therefore very important to understand the event that you'll be attending to finalise your Indian Wedding look. You better be prepared for a lot of song & dance and some lip-smacking food. Have Fun and above all, you must dress to have a great time.

We can help you figure out what to wear to an Indian Wedding!

Still not sure what to wear to an Indian wedding? Are you attending a wedding with a dress code we haven't covered here?

If you'd like more one-on-one advice about what to wear to a wedding, Hangrr stylists can make personal recommendations and, if necessary, guide you through the process of choosing and getting a custom made outfit.

Email us at or talk to one our stylists - here

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