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The Ultimate Indian Fashion Glossary

Every time I used to go shopping for an Indian outfit, the sales assistant would tell me how unique an outfit was because of its ‘zardozi’ embroidery or justify the extortionate price because of the ‘khadi’ fabric. Truth be told I never had a clue what those terms meant and just used to awkwardly nod in agreement. It turns out I wasn’t alone. Many girls will purchase their outfit without really knowing what they are paying for. 

Read on to learn the most common Indian fashion terms every girl should know.

Aari work

Patches of cotton individually hand embroidered and stitched together. 



A dress-like top normally worn with churidar trousers and a dupatta. 



India’s richest silk, known for its fine gold or silver brocade



Popular in Gujarat and Rajasthan, bandhani is a patterened cloth created by tie-dyeing to form a small dotted pattern.



Traditionally white thread embroidery on white muslin cloth.



A short fitted blouse which comes in many different styles. They are worn with lehengas or saris. 



Tight-fitting trousers with rouching around the ankles.



Cloth which has been hand spun and hand woven using the ancient Indian craft traditions. It can be any fabric including cotton silk or wool.



Wide-legged trousers with a top, the top can be short or long. 



Different shaped mirrors held in place with by cross-stitching. The use of mirrors to create embroidery. Shisha work came about from the Islamic belief that mirrors would reflect away any misfortune or notion of the evil eye. 



The technique of using metal based threads to create elaborate embellishments. It originated in Persia and has become popular among Asian brides. 


We hope this has given you a breakdown of the common Indian fashion terms to help you when it comes to finding that all important outfit!

See how many you can spot when your browsing the Loved Lehenga Listings!