Romancing the saree ft. Nangalia Ruchira

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

As much as I love the ease and comfort of a pre-draped concept saree, nothing compares to the good ol’ six/nine yards. The traditional saree gives you much more freedom to experiment with the styling and draping, especially when teamed with an unconventional blouse. It never ceases to amaze me how one of the world’s most simply constructed garments can bring such a strong sense of individuality and sophistication to a woman’s personality.

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Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt
The festive collection by Nangalia Ruchira, aptly titled ‘Belle Ame‘ which means ‘beautiful soul’ feels nothing short of refreshing, owing to the dreamy hues and relaxed silhouettes accentuated with light, intricate floral embroidery. Ruchira fuses traditional with contemporary for an avant garde charm. Based in Jaipur, her use of delicate chintz prints and gota embroidery truly bring forth the spirit of the pink city.

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Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

Kind soul that she is, Ruchira sent across some pieces from the collection recently and I just couldn’t resist romancing this blush pink organza (which happens to be one of my favorite fabrics) saree. So much so that all that flirtation with its femininity led to me styling this ethereal creation in three different ways. I live for experimentation and when it comes to Indian-wear, nothing gives me more joy than playing with the saree drape. Heck I’d be a saree sartorialist if I could, experimenting with a new drape every single day of my life! 🙂

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt
The saree comes with a chanderi silk, chintz print peplum blouse, which I felt was a good alternative to the traditional blouse and more representative of the younger generation of stylistas. Mismatched blouses are always a breath of fresh air and align well with western fashion trends, don’t you find?

Coming to my looks, the first one features a traditional ‘nivi‘ style drape which I’ve always thought of as nothing short of spectacular. Shooting this look on a passing winter day made me want to layer a sleeveless velvet front open jacket over it. The emerald green jacket which is also from Nangalia Ruchira, features matching gota and and french-knot floral embroidery and has a contrast tie-dye lining. Luckily for me, I had the perfect bag to go with the old-world charm of this ensemble – one that has been sitting pretty in my wardrobe for years and I feel proud to include in my list of prized possessions. Handcrafted by my dear dadi (grandma) for her own wedding trousseau back in the day, this embroidered  vintage satin beauty with a wooden handle is one of my favorite hand-me-downs from her. Pastel block-heels and chandbalis aka crescent earrings from Indiancultr completed the look.

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

Instead of going for a conventional petticoat, I wore a chanderi chintz-print sharara matching with the blouse, under my saree. Organza being a sheer fabric allows for a hint of the print to be visible from under the saree and that in turn adds more character to the overall look.

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

I wanted the second style to look more effortless so I chose to bring the pallu in front, casually draped over my right shoulder. This style also allows for the peplum blouse to be more visible, making the entire look seem more regal as a result.

For the third look, I was somewhat inspired by the Hyderabadi khada dupatta drape. After getting rid of the pleats on front, I brought the saree from the both the sides from under my arms and pinned it together on my left shoulder. The end result, I felt, had a very Grecian, toga-like appeal to it.

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

Surbhi Sethi HeadTilt

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Hope you enjoyed the post! Tell me which one’s your favorite style in the comments section below.

*in collaboration with Nangalia Ruchira

P.S. – Take a look at some of my previous saree looks here, here, here, here and here 🙂

Photographed by Manik Sethi
All clothing – Nangalia Ruchira
Bag – Vintage
Earrings – Indiancultr.com

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