Most of the work places today, prefer to keep the dress codes as smart casuals, unlike the past where offices meant mostly formal wears. So when you get the mailer for the ethnic/traditional day at office, that’s your chance to bring in lots of freshness and the bling in your attire. Usually, such days are held around Indian festivals and what a day it is to spend a little more fun time with your co-workers! But is your wardrobe ready for the occasion? Or do you struggle to choose your best attire for the day?
Here are some tips to help you look your formal best with the ethnic look.
Picking the right clothing from your wardrobe isn’t always about one single set. Mixing and matching is a great way to bring out the best combinations available. And since you will be wearing the attire to the workplace, why not be a little mindful so that you look very much in sync with the environs. The fabric is a crucial part of dressing and for the traditional day at the office, Silk, Cotton and Khadi are the best of the fabrics.
Indian wears like Kerala settu sari look best when they are accessorized. In ethnic wears, accessorizing is almost a must as it imparts a sense of completeness to the whole look. Try oxidized pieces of jewelry like Jhumkas, chunky bracelets and bangles. Bindis are a super advantage in ethnic look. It brightens up your face and imparts a very pleasant look.
Now, let’s take a look at ten of the most popular and recommended looks-
- Ethnic Sarees
The nine-yard wonder is one of the most versatile dresses. But it’s important that you pick the right fabric and design to suit the office environment and also carry it well. Chiffon and net don’t go well as a work wear, especially for a sari. Wearing the saree pleated is better than leaving it open. Plain sarees with thin borders would be a good choice over printed or heavy border ones. Traditional zari borders are a good choice for the occasion but make sure you don’t look like you are coming straight from a wedding. Team up the sari with elegant but simple blouses. Three-fourth sleeve or even a sleeveless one would look perfect.
- Settu Sarees
Not just among Malayalis, or even south Indians, Kerala Kasavu settu saree is a popular attire when it comes to workplace ethnic wear. With this, you can not only look traditional but by teaming it with the right blouse, you can don a smart look for the office. There are a variety of designs and styles to choose from. Be it the golden border or the trendy silk borders, there are endless varieties to pick from.
3. Punjabi suits
The Punjabi version of the traditional salwar suits is a hot favorite in ethnic wear. The wonderful varieties of the salwars like the Patiala, semi Patiala, the plain salwar and the dhoti style offer an amazing variety to pick from. Combine a heavy work dupatta with basic colour plain kurta and chudidaar/salwar or don an elegant formal kurta with a semi Patialia. Tight braids and bindis complete the look.
4. Represent your regional attire
What better day you could ask for to wear your favorite traditional dress representing your region? For both men and women, all major regions of the country have wonderful sets of attires to represent their nativity. Sometimes, the mailer from HR says that they want employees to represent their regional traditional costumes on an ethnic day. For example, Bengali balas can wear the typical Bengal cotton or the traditional white saree with red border. Wearing it the typical Bengali way isn’t suggested at the workplace, so you can just drape it as a simple saree and complete the look with a round red bindi. Maharashtrians may sport the much popular Paithani sari with the hair tied into a neat bun. For the men, dhoti and kurta are the best suited.
5. Western-Indian Fusion
Even ethnic dresses are not left out from western influences. Though the indo-western fusion collection is quite popular, this variety is not too easily available. Be it sarees or Salwar kurtas or even long skirt and tops, the fusion varieties are on the rise in popularity. The most popular designs from this variety are reflected in long skirts and tops/shirts with Indian prints, western cuts and vice versa.
6. Kurta Chudidaar … pics of both men and women
If you find the dangling pallus or carrying the pretty Dupattas at the workplace inconvenient, formal Kurtas and churidars can always come at your rescue. Within few minutes, you can get ready in an elegant Kurta and leggings. A formal dupatta will be an added advantage along with a formal hairdo and bindi.
Choose straight cut kurta over Anarkali. Full or semi stand collars are also a good choice for the office. An embroidered neck or subtle prints or plain formal ones are more suitable than the heavy embroidered ones.
7. Mundu Shirt/Kurta for men
Ethnic day is a chance for men to sport some colors in their wardrobe. It’s the day to give the usual shirt/T-shirt and trousers look a skip and be a little more vibrant in attire. Kurtas are the most convenient option to pick on an ethnic day. If you are opting for a Sherwani- kurta, keep the work on the fabric simple and avoid carrying the Dupatta. You can go for basic dark colors with not too big prints or works. For south Indian men, combining shirt with traditional white mundu with a golden border is a good option.
Things To Keep In Mind
The basic thing about dressing up is dressing for the occasion. It’s all about the place and the purpose. So here are few tips to help you team your best ethnic outfits and accessories without overpowering the office vibes.
1. Avoid showing off bare backs with low back blouses. Also, leave out the blouses with strings and hangings. Keep your blouses elegant but not attention catching.
2. Try avoiding Anarkalis specially ones with heavy glittering borders.
3. Avoid typical western dress symbols like denims. Do not sport denim even on your hand bags. If you need warm clothes, carry a woolen shawl, skip the jackets.
4. Choose palazzos and cigarette pants over Salwars. Try kurtas, ethnic tops and more with these bottoms.
5. Avoid cloth with glitters or mirror works.
6. Do not compromise on comfort or convenience. Take care that you are at your comfortable best at your workplace.