Wednesday, October 10, 2007

ladies kurtas

Ladies kurta is a traditional piece of clothing worn in northern India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. It is a loose shirt falling either just above or somewhere below the knees of the wearer. It can be worn with salwar or chudidaar. The ladies kurtas are formal as well as casual wear. These ladies kurtas are usually custom-made by South Asian tailors, who work with the fabric their customers bring them. A wide range of traditional ladies kurtas for women that is suitable for special occasions as well as regular use could be easily search able. One can have a variety of selection and choose from different fabrics like silk, poly silk, cotton fabrics etc. These kurtas are also available in variety of colors and embroidered designs. One can feel comfort at home wearing these ladies kurtas. Ladies kurtas enhances the spirituality with a modern and a divine creation.

Costume of Kerala

The word `costume` refers to the dress patterns of the people of a particular community. We know that there are different costumes in different countries and nations. It is the costume of a community, which differentiates its people from others. The costumes of the people around the world are wide and varied. India alone has innumerable varieties of costumes. The people of the South of India are easily recognizable from those in the North. The people in the East and West of India have equally varied ways of dressing. However the four states in the South of India namely Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh have a common way of dressing.

The people of Kerala are very simple. They are very moderately dressed. They cant be seen wearing tight jeans and top with all make up and different colors on their hair. They Mundu dressgive importance in` being decently dressed`. To narrow down and discuss about the costumes of Kerala let us look at its history and culture. The main dress worn by the people of Kerala are mainly traditional in nature. The costumes are guided by the geographical conditions of the region. The traditional dress forms are the `mundu and neriathu`, which is worn by both men and women. The `mundum-neryathum is the extant form of the ancient saree. Women can also be seen wearing sari and blouse. The word `sari` is derived from the Sanskrit word `sati`, which means strip of cloth. In the `mundum neriyathum, the traditional piece is the `mundu` which forms the lower garment while `neriyathu` forms the upper garment. It consists of two pieces of cloth. The `mundu` is worn below the navel and around the hips. It is a hand woven cotton cloth.which is very comfortable during the summer. It is white or cream in color with a colored strip known as border or ` kara`. On going out, men wear `shirt and mundu` with a small `neriyathu` on their shoulder and smear sandal paste on their chests and brows. This gives them a dignified and royal look. In addition to this Muslim men wear a cap. They wear the `mundu` in a different style from that of Hindus and Christians.

Women also wear `mundu` in the same style of that of men except for the Christian women, the `mundu` is folded in fan-like multiple folds and this portion is hung at the back. On the top of the `mundu` women wear a special kind of blouse, which covers the navel. The `neriyathu`, is the upper garment worn over the blouse with its one end tucked inside the mundu and the remaining long end worn across the front torso. It is worn diagonally from along the right hips to the left shoulder resembling the saree. Both the `mundu and neriyathu` is starched before being draped and is worn with the blouse that matches the color of the border or `kara`. It was worn as an everyday costume and on festive occasions people used to wear it with an ornamental `kara` or border which is either golden, copper coated or artificial colored with peacock or temple designs. The color of the blouse is determined by the age and marital status of the woman. Young unmarried girls wear green blouse while married women wear red blouses. During the Keralite festival of Onam, women of all ages wear it and take part in the folk dance called `kaikottikali`.

The `mundum neriyathum` was the traditional costume of Kerala. Now it is becoming an old fashion and is worn by old women of Kerala. Today it is replaced by the `Set-sari`. It also resembles the `mundum neriyathum` with the only difference that it consists of a single piece of cloth. Now the `Set-sari` is worn by Keralite women as a quasi `mundum neriyathum` and known as the `Kerala saree`. Today women wear this sari only on festive occasions like Onam and Kerala day (November 1st).

Today saris are woven in mechanical looms and are made of artificial fibers as polyester, nylon or rayon, which do not require starching or ironing. Everyday costumes of men consist of `dhoti` or `lungi` with or without shirt. Women wear `lungi` with a breast band. Previously, women only wore one draped cloth and exposed their upper body.

With the changing trends in fashion and designing, the dress codes too have changed. The traditional style is disappearing among the people. Today men and women are clad in a variety of dresses. The people have now taken to the northern style of dressing. Men have taken to tea-shirts and trousers imitating Western fashion, which is more comfortable and suited for traveling. Women of all communities wear the North Indian style churidar. At home, both men and women wear revert to the traditional styles to cope with the hot climate and humidity.

Now a days, tradition has lost its value and is considered by the modern generation as an old fashion. People now are in search of `the new` and change according to the recent trends as seen in cinemas and movies. Of course, you have to change but never forget ones tradition and consider it a shame. Wherever you go, you have to uphold your tradition and consider it as a pride, which makes you a unique person, than considering it a shame.

Costumes of Kashmir

For many years Kashmiri men and women have worn the same style of dress. The Handicrafts & Textiles of Kashmir people is famous all over the world. The Pheran and `Poots` consist of two gowns, one on top of the other, falling to the feet in the case of a Hindu, worn up to the knees by a Muslim. Hindus wear them narrow with turned up ends. Traditionally there was a brightly colored design on the outside, with Yak or goatskin on the inside to keep the wearer warm. This has now been changed by fashion to a simple ornament of brightly colored material, although in winter many women still wear the goatskin for warmth. A Muslim woman`s pheran is knee-length, loose and embroidered in front and on the edges, a Hindu woman`s pheran touches her feet.

The long loose sleeves are fashionably decorated with brocade. With this type of Hindu costume goes the headdress called taranga, which is tied to a hanging cap and tapers down to the heels from behind. The younger Hindu women however have taken to the sari, after the reform movement of the thirties. Even then, on the wedding day they have to wear the taranga ceremonially. It is covered with the palav of the brides wedding sari. Taranga thus stays as part of the bridal trousseau.

Costumes of KashmirUnlike a Hindu woman`s pheran, which gives her a Roman look, the Muslim woman`s pheran is beautifully embroidered in front. Their headgear, the Kasaba, looks very different from the taranga. It is red in color, tied turban-like and held tight by an abundance of silver pins and trinkets. It has an overhanging pin-scarf, which falls grace fully over the shoulders. A work-a-day shalwar goes with it. Unmarried Muslim girls wear skullcaps, embroidered with gold thread and embellished with silver pendants, trinkets and amulets. With the passage of years, an appreciable change has come about in the dress of the Kashmiri women. Saris, shalwar-kameez, churidars and jeans are becoming popular, yet none of these belong to them as much as the good old pheran.

Gujjars: The hilly people of Kashmir are called Gujjars. The dress of a Gujjar woman of the hills in the valley is very much similar to that worn by the Turkish village women. It consists of as plenty shalwar and full-skirted tunic with loose sleeves. A thick covering on the head falls back to the shoulders. The Gujjar woman joins her hair in multiple plaits, which hang in front, covering half of their moon-shaped faces.

Dogra DressDogras: Diverse castes and sects inhabit Jammu province. The Dogras inhabiting the hilly tract bounding the mountains of the Kashmir valley generally are dressed in grey woolens and loose pyjamas, they also flaunt a kamarband. Women wear long, loose tunics, close-fitting chudidars and dupatta or cap to complete their charming ensemble.

LadakhiLadakhi: Ladakh is a part of the state Jammu and Kashmir. Ladakh is known as the `land of the Lamas` and the Buddhist of Ladakh prefers to call their religion Lamaism, which is much the same as Mahayana (or Great vehicle) form of Buddhism.

Women`s Clothing: Women wear a similar robe called a "Kuntop" but on their backs they add a colorful shawl, the "Bok" in which a baby or parcels can easily be carried. It used to be worn for warmness and a protection on the back against heavy loads of sticks and rocks.

Men`s Clothing: Men traditionally wear bulky woolen robe called "Goucha", fastened at the neck, under the armpit and tied at the waist with a colorful sash known as a "Skerag". The Skerag is about two meters long and 20 cm wide, wound round and round and tucked in. In this sash men carry the small essentials of Ladakhi life.