Essential Clothing: The Indian Kurti

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This post was inspired by a question posted on one of my previous posts on Bandra Linking Road. What is a kurti? This got me thinking, a kurti is an essential piece of clothing for women in India and something that you probably only find in the Indian subcontinent.

Me in a modern kurti for a day of shopping

What is a kurti? A kurti is typically a short top (falls around the hips) made in a very light material, like cotton. Most kurtis have long or 3/4 length sleeves. In the summer, kurtis can come in short sleeves. I generally prefer the long sleeves kurtis as I feel they make me look slimmer. The kurtis are worn over skinny jeans or leggings. A quick way to identify a kurti from a salwar kurta? Kurtis don’t have a dupatta or scraf with them.

As with anything in India, kurtis are adorned with bright colors and patterns. You can easily wear a kurti to a party and have it accessorised with jewellery. It also serves as the perfect outfit to run errands, wear to work, or go shopping in one of the busy street markets. I was recently told you can even wear a kurti to an interview here. I might have to try this out and see if it really works.

An average kurti ranges anywhere from 200 Rupees  ($5) to 1500 Rupees ($30). If you want to go real high end, you can even pick a designer kurti for 20,000 Rupees. You can pick kurtis up at pretty much any clothing store. In malls, Global Desi and Biba have been my favorite shops for modern and fun kurti shopping.

Pakistani Kurti

A new kurti style that has recently emerged is known as the pakistani kurti. These kurtis are longer than traditionally kurtis and usually hit you below the knees. The pakistani kurtis are the current trend in Mumbai and Pune; most girls pair them with a pair of ankle length leggings. These kurtis are made of a georgette material, therefore making them quite light and airy.

In India, the kurti serves as a perfect blend of designer style and everyday comfort. My aim is to get more colorful kurtis in my wardrobe-make them my go to outfit for hot and humid days. Somehow, in a really weird and silly way, wearing a kurti makes me feel like I am fitting well into India, lol.

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3 responses »

  1. Thanks Swara! I love the picture; it’s nice to see you. Jessica and I had lunch with Jooi yesterday at Aladdin’s; it was fun catching up with her. I hope all is well!

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