Whenever we think about West Bengal, two things strike the head- one being the obvious Rasogullas and the other one is the world famous Howrah Bridge. Both these things might be popular for the state but there is so much more than these to rejoice about. Bengal is widely known for its heritage and rich culture.
Bengal gets its legacy from the nobility and royal patronage that has introduced multiple world-class techniques of stitching, weaving, and embroidery. And the same thing still exists in their traditional dresses. Over time, people here have found multiple ways to inherit fashion and trend in their existing outfits.
So, let’s have a look at the popular traditional outfits of West Bengal.
1. Dhoti and Kurta
The traditional dresses in West Bengal for men do not have a huge variety but this one is an elegant piece of work. Initially, the fabric that was used to make this outfit was silk or cotton but over time, it has changed immensely. This is a comfortable, delightful, and popular dress worn by the men of Bengal.
Mostly, people here wear cotton Dhoti and Kurta which is white in color. But nowadays, you will get a lot of versatility and variety in this attire. Be it the color, design, style, or material; you can get options. And there is another element that they wear on top of this attire and that’s a shawl. Mostly grey and solid- but there are still varieties available, even in this.
2. Dhakai Jamdani
West Bengal is known for the number of saree options that are available. And one of them is the Dhakai Jamdani which happens to have originated in Dhaka- hence the name. This is a very unique type of saree which is known for its “hazar Panna.” The translation of this is thousand emeralds. The saree also has flowered weaved on it using silver and gold colored threads.
Dhakai Jamdani is an expensive saree all because of the laborious technique required to make it. The saree looks amazing and simply worth every penny you pay for it.
3. Korial and Garad
If you know a person who is a Bengali; you must have seen the ladies of the family wearing a white color saree with red borders and stripes towards the end of their pallu. This saree is known as Garad and is a traditional saree of West Bengal. Needless to say, this saree is a timeless gem of the females of Bengal because they look astonishing in this attire.
Now, Korial is the cousin of Garad which comes with some tweaks. It has intriguing flower patterns and much more. Where Garad is simply plain. When wearing any of these attire, Bengali women pair heavy accessories with it. Jhumkas, necklaces, red bangles, and payal. It is a fact that when a lady wears Garad or Korial- she looks elegant and beautiful.
4. Tant Saree
Another type of saree that Bengalis love to wear and flaunt is the Tant Saree. It is undoubtedly, one of the best traditional attire of West Bengal for females. And usually, this is worn by the ladies during some rituals, festivals, occasions, or marriage event.This saree gets its name from the loom it is woven which goes by the same name; and it is extremely popular amongst the people of Bengal. The saree is quite long but it is light-weight which is one of the reasons why it is popular.
Wearing the Tant Saree is very easy and effortless. With all the characteristics offered by Tant Saree; women of West Bengal prefer wearing it mostly in the summer or monsoon. When the temperature is hot and humid. These saree are usually made with flowers and motifs of paisleys, and they have a thick border to weave this. But this saree is perfect “everyday wear” for women in Bengal.
5. Muslin Cotton
If you wish to buy a simple saree or something that’s popular for its simplicity- then we would suggest you get a Muslin Cotton saree. This outfit completely justifies the description that we gave in the first two lines. Muslin Cotton is an extremely soft fabric with fine quality. To recognise this fabric, all you need to do is get its feel.
Due to the nature of this fabric, soft hand work is only done on it. And majorly you will find just soft paste colors with delicate patterns. Sarees made out of this fabric are adorned with multiple colorful patterns. If you wish to buy them; you will get an affordable as well as an expensive range for this attire.
6. Baluchari Saree
When it comes to buying a saree; there are so many options available in the market. But Bengali Sarees always have the upper hand in those areas. And one of the best Bengali traditional outfits is the Baluchari Saree. It originated in the Murshidabad District of the state. Which happens to be a very small town. These sarees are always on high demand and are worn from common day to day lives to multiple special occasions.
The saree is made of fine silk. Usually, irrespective of the color of the saree; it is seen that they are made of gold hue borders. And the embroidery is done in the same color. There are multiple things made on it but mostly it represents the religious and historical scenes. And it is usually taken from the Indian Mythology.
7. Tussar Silk Sarees
When you look for more options in the sarees in West Bengal; you are up for a treat. Apart from all those already mentioned above, here is an amazing option which you can’t overlook and that’s Tussar Silk Sarees. It originated from the Malda District- and still this place is known to be the hub of this saree.
Bengalis are strongly connected to their culture, traditions, and techniques. All the attire we have mentioned above are absolutely amazing. People still wear these attire with a lot of amusement and the major reason behind it is the adoption of new trends. Yes, the way we have mentioned in the beginning of this blog- Bengalis have kept on tweaking things to keep their traditional wears and mainstream.