The Grace of Lace

By Sarees Silk .

In the last decade and a half, lace has seen a surge of sorts in the Indian fashion scene.

Bollywood brings back lace

The credit goes to Bollywood for showcasing actresses like Aishwarya Rai in Mohabbatein and Kajol in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai donning traditional Indian garments made from the delicate fabric. As always, this of course translated to “trend” and we saw other non-Bollywood Indian designers following suit. More recently, Payal Singhal launched a beautiful collection featuring gorgeous sarees, anarkalis and lehengas made from Chantilly lace.

Lace has now acquired a unique position in the plethora of fabrics on offer in Indian fashion. It’s still a relatively uncommon and contemporary choice but almost certainly a head-turner when you step out in a delicate lace saree draped over you.

A timeless fabric fetched from Europe to the subcontinent

This delicate weave originated in Europe, many say France.  It is made of yarn or thread in an open weblike pattern, made by machine or hand. Lace can be made of linen, silk, gold or silver threads. Modern-day lace now also includes cotton.

So many types of lace…

There are many different types of lace used in traditional Indian garments today.

1. Delicate French or Italian Chantilly lace – the best type is made of silk

2. Heavier Italian lace

3. Embellished lace – usually with sequins and crystals

The price of a lace garment is determined by the texture and quality. The thinner the lace and more quality threads used, the more expensive the garment.

How to wear lace

The delicacy of the lace fabric exudes a certain understated elegance and glamour. It is best worn at more formal occasions e.g. an engagement, wedding ceremony or a reception. For an evening event, consider black, gold, silver or champagne lace sarees. An embellished lace saree would work perfectly for a Gatsby themed pre-wedding occasion, for instance. For day-time events, lighter coloured lace outfits work best e.g. sarees or anarkalis in cream, off-white, pastels, baby pink or even hues of lime green.

A lace garment is also great for a timeless, vintage, chic look at a wedding event. For wedding ceremony outfits, Anamika Khanna is one of the few Indian fashion designers that works with lace. It would be easy to add a touch of lace elegance by wearing a lace blouse or a bridal dupatta with lace finishings like Karishma Boolani did below.

Whether you choose a fully embellished lace saree or prefer to keep it simple, embrace lace with sheer elegance!

Favourite lace looks

About The Author

Sarees and Silk

Contributor at The Crimson Bride. Sarees & Silk is the ultimate Indian fashion blog. This is my take, my reflections and thoughts on all things to do with Indian and South Asian fashion. An outlet to allow my thoughts to breathe and share what I’d like to do and what’s relevant today. I’ve always been fascinated by fashion and having grown up in Sydney with an Indian background and a staple diet of Bollywood films, has helped me draw on the magical world of Indian / South Asian fashion. All that colour, the embroidery, the fabrics, those scintillating silhouettes - there is so much variety, I’m hooked.