In this article, you will learn the intricacies of draping a saree over a lehenga, the traditional Indian ensemble that combines a long skirt with a matching blouse and a sheer drape. With step-by-step instructions and expert tips, you will master the art of elegantly draping the saree over the lehenga, creating a stunning and harmonious fusion of two iconic Indian garments. Whether you are attending a wedding, a cultural event, or simply want to try something new, this guide will equip you with the skills to effortlessly drape a saree over a lehenga with confidence and style.
Choosing the Right Saree
When it comes to draping a saree over a lehenga, the first step is to choose the right saree. As the saree will be draped over a lehenga, it is important to select a saree that complements the lehenga and enhances the overall look. One of the key factors to consider when selecting the fabric of the saree is the weight. Opt for lightweight fabrics such as chiffon, georgette, or silk blends to ensure that the saree does not weigh down the lehenga. Additionally, consider the design and color of the saree. It should harmonize with the lehenga and match your personal style and the occasion you are dressing up for.
Selecting the Fabric
The choice of fabric plays a significant role in the overall appearance of the saree draped over a lehenga. Opt for fabrics that are lightweight and drape well, such as chiffon, georgette, or silk blends. These fabrics lend an elegant and graceful look to the saree, making it flow effortlessly over the lehenga. Avoid heavy fabrics like velvet or brocade that may make the drape appear bulky or overpowering. It is essential to ensure that the fabric has enough fluidity to create clean pleats and a smooth drape.
Choosing the Color and Design
When selecting a saree to drape over a lehenga, consider the color and design that will complement the lehenga and create a visually appealing ensemble. Choose colors that harmonize with the lehenga and your skin tone. Solid-colored sarees in shades like pastels, neutrals, or metallics are versatile options as they can be paired with a variety of lehengas. If you prefer a printed saree, opt for designs that are not too overwhelming and blend well with the lehenga’s design. It is important to strike a balance between the saree and lehenga to create a cohesive look.
Considering the Embellishments
Embellishments on the saree can add a touch of glamour and enhance the overall appeal of the outfit. However, it is crucial to consider the embellishments on both the saree and lehenga to avoid an overpowering effect. If your lehenga is heavily embellished, opt for a saree with minimal or no embellishments to maintain a balanced look. On the other hand, if your lehenga is relatively simple, you can choose a saree with intricate embellishments to create a statement. Choosing the right combination of embellishments can elevate the overall look of the saree draped over the lehenga.
Preparing the Lehenga
Before draping the saree over the lehenga, it is important to make sure that the lehenga fits properly. Ensure that the waistband of the lehenga is secure and sits comfortably on your waist. If needed, get the lehenga altered to achieve the perfect fit. Additionally, pay attention to the blouse. Make sure it is properly fitted, with the sleeves at the desired length. The blouse should sit well with the lehenga, complementing its design and adding to the overall aesthetic. Once the lehenga and blouse are ready, you can move on to securing the lehenga with a waistband, which helps keep the drape in place.
Ensuring the Lehenga Fits Properly
The key to a flattering saree drape over a lehenga lies in ensuring that the lehenga fits perfectly. Start by measuring your waist accurately to determine the correct size. If you have purchased a ready-made lehenga, check the measurements and alterations needed, if any. If you are getting a lehenga tailored, provide accurate measurements to the tailor to ensure a great fit. A well-fitted lehenga not only enhances your body shape but also creates a solid foundation for the saree drape, allowing it to fall gracefully.
Getting the Blouse Ready
While getting the lehenga ready is important, do not forget about the blouse! The blouse plays a significant role in the overall saree drape. Ensure that the blouse fits well, hugging your upper body comfortably. Pay attention to the neckline, as it should complement the saree and lehenga. The sleeves of the blouse should be tailored to your preferred length, ensuring ease of movement. If you have opted for a backless or low-back blouse design, make sure the hooks or ties are secure to prevent any wardrobe malfunctions during the drape.
Securing the Lehenga with a Waistband
To keep the lehenga in place while draping the saree, it is crucial to secure it with a waistband. A waistband not only helps maintain the perfect fit but also prevents the lehenga from slipping down during the drape. Choose a waistband that matches the color of your lehenga or opt for a transparent one that blends seamlessly. Wrap the waistband tightly around your waist, ensuring it is comfortable and secure. The waistband acts as an anchor for the saree drape, allowing you to move freely without worrying about the lehenga shifting.
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Draping the Saree
Now that the lehenga is prepared and in place, it is time to drape the saree over it. Draping a saree over a lehenga follows a similar process to draping it traditionally. Start by tucking one end of the saree into the waistband, and then begin making pleats. Pleat the saree neatly, ensuring that the pleats are of equal width and fall gracefully. Once you have pleated the entire saree, bring it around the waist and secure it with the waistband. Tuck the remaining loose end of the saree into the waistband, creating a seamless look.
Pleating the Saree
The first step in draping the saree over the lehenga is pleating the saree. Start by holding one end of the saree and tucking it into the waistband, slightly to the right side of the navel. Now, slowly start making pleats, around 5-6 inches wide. Ensure that the pleats are neat and even. Once you have pleated the entire length of the saree, tuck it into the waistband, slightly to the left side of the navel. The pleats should cascade elegantly, falling in a straight line parallel to the floor.
Tying the Knot
After pleating the saree, it is time to tie the knot. Take the remaining loose end of the saree and bring it around the waist, towards the front. Make sure the length of the saree is equal on both sides. Now, take the loose end and tuck it into the waistband, at the center. Ensure that the knot is secure and tight, as it will hold the drape in place. Adjust the saree so that it falls evenly and covers the waistband completely, creating a seamless transition from the lehenga to the saree.
Adjusting the Pallu
Now that the saree is draped over the lehenga, it is time to adjust the pallu, which is the loose end that falls over the shoulder. Start by taking the pallu and bringing it over your left shoulder from the back, allowing it to fall gracefully. The length of the pallu can vary based on personal preference and occasion. For a more traditional look, opt for a longer pallu that falls below the knees. To create a contemporary look, keep the pallu shorter, ending just above the knees. Adjust the width of the pallu based on the amount of fabric available.
Enhancing the Look
To enhance the overall look of the saree draped over a lehenga, consider adding accessories that complement the outfit. Choose jewelry, such as necklaces, earrings, or bangles, that harmonize with the color and design of the saree. Pay attention to the occasion and choose the appropriate level of embellishment. Additionally, applying makeup can elevate your look. Opt for a makeup look that suits the saree and lehenga, highlighting your best features. Lastly, style your hair in a way that complements the outfit, whether it’s an elegant updo or loose curls.
Accessories play a significant role in completing the saree drape over a lehenga. Choose accessories that complement the color and design of the outfit. Consider wearing a statement necklace or a delicate pendant that enhances the neckline of the blouse. Earrings can add a touch of elegance, while bracelets or bangles can add charm to the overall look. Pay attention to the occasion and select accessories accordingly. Remember, accessories should enhance the outfit without overpowering it.
Makeup can enhance your natural beauty and complete the look of the saree draped over a lehenga. Start by prepping your skin with a moisturizer and primer to ensure a smooth base. Choose a foundation that matches your skin tone and apply it evenly, covering any imperfections. Enhance your eyes with eyeshadow in hues that complement the saree and lehenga. Apply eyeliner, mascara, and false eyelashes for a more dramatic look. Finish off with blush, lipstick, and highlighter to add a radiant glow to your face.
Styling Your Hair
Hair styling plays a crucial role in completing the overall look of the saree draped over a lehenga. The hairstyle should complement the outfit and enhance your facial features. Depending on the occasion and personal preference, you can opt for an elegant updo, such as a bun or a French twist, to create a polished look. Alternatively, you can leave your hair open and style it with loose curls or waves to add a touch of glamour. Use hair accessories like hairpins or embellished clips to enhance the hairstyle further.
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Maintaining the Drape
To ensure that the saree drape over the lehenga stays intact throughout the day or evening, it is important to maintain it properly. This includes fixing any loose pleats, avoiding snags, and handling the pallu with care.
Fixing Loose Pleats
During the course of the day, the pleats of the saree may become loose or unraveled. To fix this, gently hold the saree at the waist and carefully adjust the pleats, ensuring that they are even and fall correctly. Once the pleats are in place, use a small safety pin to secure them to the waistband, preventing them from coming undone. This will help maintain a neat and tidy look throughout the day.
When wearing a saree draped over a lehenga, it is important to be mindful of potential snags or damage to the fabric. Be cautious around sharp objects or rough surfaces that may cause the saree to snag. Avoid excessive movement that may lead to the saree getting caught on something. Additionally, be mindful of jewelry or accessories that may have sharp edges, as they can easily snag the delicate fabric. Taking these precautions will help keep the saree in pristine condition.
Handling the Pallu
The pallu, or the loose end of the saree draped over the shoulder, requires careful handling to maintain its appearance. Avoid pulling or tugging on the pallu too forcefully, as it may cause the drape to come undone or become uneven. If you need to adjust the pallu throughout the day, do so gently, making sure it falls gracefully and covers the waistband completely. Be mindful of the length of the pallu and ensure it does not interfere with everyday tasks or activities.
Even with careful preparation, there may be certain issues that arise while draping a saree over a lehenga. Common issues include fit problems, saree slip, or adjusting pallu length. Here are some solutions to these common problems:
Solving Fit Issues
If you experience fit issues with the lehenga or blouse while draping the saree, consider using safety pins to secure the drape and ensure a proper fit. Use discreetly placed safety pins to adjust the fit of the blouse or lehenga, ensuring that it sits comfortably on your body. The safety pins should be hidden within the layers of fabric, maintaining the seamless look of the saree drape over the lehenga.
Fixing Saree Slip
If the saree slips down from the waistband while wearing it, use safety pins to secure the saree to the waistband. Take discreet safety pins and attach them to the saree fabric and the waistband, ensuring that they are hidden from view. This will prevent the saree from slipping and maintain a neat appearance.
Adjusting Pallu Length
If you feel that the length of the pallu is either too long or too short, it can be adjusted easily. For a longer pallu, gently pull the saree fabric from the shoulder and allow it to drape lower. If the pallu is too long and interfering with your movements, simply fold the excess fabric at the shoulder and secure it with a pin. This will create a shorter pallu, allowing greater ease of movement while maintaining an elegant look.
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Different Draping Styles
When it comes to draping a saree over a lehenga, there are various regional and cultural draping styles to choose from. Some popular styles include the Traditional Gujarati Style, Bengali Style, and Maharashtrian Nauvari Style.
Traditional Gujarati Style
The Traditional Gujarati Style involves pleating the saree in a way that showcases the pleats prominently. Start by tucking one end of the saree into the waistband, slightly to the right side of the navel. Begin making wide pleats and tuck them neatly into the waistband. Once you have pleated the entire length of the saree, bring it around the waist and secure it with the waistband. The pallu is draped over the left shoulder, with pleats forming a fan-like shape in the front.
The Bengali Style of draping a saree over a lehenga is elegant and graceful. Start by making pleats in the saree and tuck them into the waistband, slightly to the left side of the navel. Bring the remaining fabric around the waist, back to the front, and create pleats at the left side of the waist. Make sure the pleats are wide and neatly arranged. Now, bring the pallu over the left shoulder, allowing it to cascade down the front. The pallu can be draped over the head for a more traditional look.
Maharashtrian Nauvari Style
The Maharashtrian Nauvari Style is unique and distinctive. It involves draping the saree in a way that resembles a dhoti. Start by tucking one end of the saree into the waistband, slightly to the right side of the navel. Take the remaining fabric and bring it around the waist, back to the front. Divide the fabric into two parts and make pleats on both sides. Secure the pleats at the center of the waistband, creating a dhoti-like effect. The pallu is draped over the left shoulder, allowing the loose end to fall freely.
Tips and Tricks
To ensure a perfect saree drape over a lehenga, here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind:
Practice Makes Perfect
Draping a saree over a lehenga may take some practice to get it just right. Before the special occasion, spend some time practicing the drape in front of a mirror. This will help you familiarize yourself with the steps and make adjustments as needed. With sufficient practice, you will become more confident and comfortable in achieving a flawless saree drape.
Use Safety Pins
Safety pins are your best friend when it comes to managing the saree drape over a lehenga. Keep a stash of small, discreet safety pins handy to secure the pleats, adjust the fit, or keep the pallu in place. However, make sure to hide the safety pins within the layers of fabric to maintain a seamless look.
Choose Comfort over Fashion
While draping a saree over a lehenga is undoubtedly a stylish and elegant choice, it is important to prioritize comfort. Ensure that the lehenga and blouse fit well and allow freedom of movement. Opt for lightweight fabrics that drape well and do not weigh down the lehenga. Avoid excessive embellishments that may cause discomfort or snag the fabric. Comfort should always be given priority to enjoy the occasion confidently.
Ideal Occasions to Drape a Saree Over a Lehenga
When it comes to choosing the right occasion to drape a saree over a lehenga, consider the following:
Weddings and Engagements
Weddings and engagement ceremonies are perfect occasions for draping a saree over a lehenga. The combination of the saree and lehenga creates a stunning and traditional look, perfect for these joyous celebrations. You can experiment with bold colors, intricate designs, and elaborate embellishments to stand out on these special occasions.
Festivals and Traditional Events
Festivals and traditional events provide an opportunity to showcase culture and heritage. Draping a saree over a lehenga adds a touch of elegance to these celebrations. Opt for traditional saree styles and colors that reflect the essence of the festival or event. This combination allows you to embrace tradition while maintaining a contemporary look.
Formal Parties and Receptions
Formal parties and receptions call for an outfit that exudes sophistication and style. Draping a saree over a lehenga creates a glamorous and fashion-forward look, perfect for these events. Choose a saree and lehenga combination that complements the formality of the occasion. Opt for rich fabrics, elegant embellishments, and color combinations that make a statement.
Draping a saree over a lehenga is a beautiful way to create a unique and stunning ensemble. By carefully selecting the saree fabric, color, and design, as well as preparing the lehenga properly, you can achieve a flawless saree drape. Using the right draping techniques, accessories, and makeup can enhance the overall look, allowing you to make a lasting impression. With some practice and attention to detail, you can confidently drape a saree over a lehenga for weddings, festivals, parties, and other special occasions, creating a stylish and elegant look.