So, you’re invited to an Indian wedding? Maybe it’s your first, or maybe it’s your 10th. Regardless, here are some tips to keep you gentlemen looking fresh.
Traditional Western weddings typically consist of a ceremony followed by a reception. As a guest, you can rock that well-fitted suit for the entire celebration. Comparatively, Indian weddings are a more extravagant affair, generally consisting of three occasions: a pre-wedding Mehndi and/or Sangeet, the wedding ceremony, and the reception (usually requiring a change in attire between the latter two).
Online articles on dressing for an Indian wedding almost exclusively advise a shiny kurta pyjama or ornate sherwani, which, per contemporary Indian fashion, lean on the tacky side. Somehow, for a culture renowned for vivid colors and mesmerizing fabrics, the men’s outfits have been treated as an afterthought. Let’s address that now. For the GQ man in you, below are some tips for a more modern approach.
- Mehndi & Sangeet: this is your time to go bold! Embrace color and personality. Be ready to dance and have a little fun. We would recommend an Indowestern look: a white button-down shirt with a colorful Nehru vest (or bandi), and a nice pair of trousers (we are fans of styling with a white pant as it allows the colorful jacket to pop). If you have no Indian clothes in your closet, this requires just a purchase of the vest, which can be quite budget friendly. As an example, check out this dapper dude.
- Ceremony: traditional, yet modern would be our recommendation. Feel free to consider the kurta pyjama, but for a more contemporary look consider including: a clean, solid kurta (black, white, or a color) with a more classic Nehru vest (or bandi), and trousers (again, the white pant could be a good fit for a daytime / outdoor ceremony). See here for an example of east meeting west.
- Reception: go formal – Western and Indowestern are both suitable (pun intended). While ladies deck out in gowns and jewels, men can (and should) up their game too. We would of course recommend an Indian touch with a Bandhgala (Indian suit jacket), formal trousers, all spiced up with a pocket square. Here’s an example of keeping it clean and classy.
Indian weddings are an explosion of color, food, dance, and revelry. Get ready to have fun, but more importantly, always dress to be remembered, not just noticed (Giorgio Armani...kind of)
Note: Saffron Lane offers a Style Concierge. You can reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be happy to help with attire selection, coordination, etc