North Indian Fashion Trends: Then and Now

North India has always been a geographically strategic location and as such, it has been the center of political struggles for centuries. Though many rulers have come and gone, it has remained an immensely important political center. This has resulted in a very diverse and rich culture made up of different religions and communities that have influenced each other tremendously. The clothing fashions of this region are a great way to explore its multi-cultural nature. Though many of the most popular north Indian outfits, like the salwar kurta or the Punjabi suit, are quite traditional, they have evolved over the years to meet the demands of each new generation. The end result is a tremendous amount of variety in terms of cuts, colors and designs.

The most popular casual wear garment for men that is worn across Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and many other north Indian states is the salwar kurta. It consists of a long, straight-fitting tunic and a pair of loose pants that gather at the ankles. The salwar kurta can be worn by men as well as women, though women typically go for the more feminized salwar kameez. This outfit was initially only worn by men as a casual wear outfit, preferred because of its comfort and versatility. It came in classic colors like white, beige and tan. The modern, fusion salwar kurta outfit is worn by both men and women and sometimes, the kurta is worn alone in combination with jeans or trousers. There are many different varieties of the salwar kurta, from the classic, loose fitting garments in neutral tones to the designer, modern versions with fitted silhouettes.

Today the kurta has become a huge trend in both Indian and western fashion. It is considered an Indian version of the stylish tunic top and comes in a plethora of different colors, designs, patterns, fabrics, necklines and sleeve styles. In north India, it has become as popular as the Punjabi salwar kameez, especially for casual wear amongst the younger generation. The kurta can be worn for daily wear as well as special occasions depending on the richness of the outfit. It is sometimes paired up with fusion garments like the Nehru jacket (which is a well-fitted jacket distinguished by its high, closed neck collar) to create a smart, formal look. The kurta and Nehru jacket combination is one of the most popular wedding ensembles for men in north India, along with more traditional garments like the silk salwar kurtas and embroidered sherwanis.

The emergence of online portals as the premier mode of shopping has really changed the face of fashion in India. Many of these classic north Indian outfits have become popular and in-demands across India. For men and women in different parts of the world interested in buying kurtas, pyjamas, salwars and Punjabi suits, online shopping has proven to be a great boon. Now, both traditional and classic varieties of these outfits can be easily purchased no matter where the customer is located.