What makes a saree hot?

What makes a saree hot and desirable for our young wannabes? For the young, fashion-conscious generation of today who wants to live life to the fullest and make an impression with whatever they do, dressing conservatively is unthinkable.


Ask them to dress like their moms did two decades back and see all hell let loose. Other than getting a good verbal bashing and dirty looks, you will be branded a ‘jerk’ and a ‘misfit’! This young brigade who will stop at nothing wants to wear clothes that reflect their attitude and approach to life-rebellious and flamboyant. They will lap up branded jeans, capris, tank tops, hot pants, tube tops, corsets, bikinis with as much aplomb as they will sexy sarees, designer ghaghra-cholis and salwar-kameez suits, as long as they feel their outfit can make a style statement.

The saree is one piece of our traditional ensemble that has evolved beautifully over the last few years and is now available in both versions- conventional and conservative; chic and prêt. One major factor contributing to this change in the look of the saree is the fact that women in the bygone times were basically homemakers and spent a greater portion of their time at home. Now that a lot of young gals are working, they need attires that they can manage easily and yet look formal and appropriate at work. What has made the saree hot is the hardwork of the new lot of fashion designers, who have infused new life into this five and a half meter drape and the Bollywood leading ladies who have been wonderful brand ambassadors for this symbol of our tradition in its new avatar. Both of them together have managed to give the saree a much needed makeover, immensely enhancing its popularity with the younger generation.

There is a lot more to choose from for the young brigade besides the heavy and cumbersome silks which would have one sweating under the sheer weight of the fabric in a hot country like India. The monsoons could be particularly nightmarish, thanks to sudden downpours and muddy potholed roads, which are characteristic of ‘India shining’. Sarees are now available in lightweight fabrics which are easily washable like georgettes, faux georgettes, shimmer, chiffons and crepes which are washable and easy to manage. Light and breezy fabrics seem to be a natural choice where the summer season is rather long-ish. A little skin-show will, besides keeping the wearer cool, make the saree hot and turn on the heat on others!

For a generation obsessed with style, sarees are now being crafted in transparent, diaphanous fabrics which leave nothing to imagination. To add to the oomph, the garment is tied way below the navel to flaunt a perfect hour-glass figure. Add to it a delicate piece of jewellery on a pierced navel and a tattoo on the back- the gentlemen among the audience will be sweating for sure! Flaunting a well-toned midsection and, may be, even the navel makes a saree hot. To make things even hotter, the saree could be crafted out of a sheer fabric – it would have an aphrodisiacal effect on men. The men love to watch hot babes and, thanks to the way the saree is draped these days, navel watching has now become a national obsession.

Clothes these days are designed to reveal much more than they can conceal and in keeping with the current fad, blouses are unconventional and out-of-the-box. Getting paired with spaghetti-strapped blouses, corsets, backless blouses, bikini-tops and halter-necks has added to the oomph and appeal of sarees, making it a much sought after garment. These drastic changes in the look of the saree might seem offensive to a few oldies but they have managed to give this very sensuous garment a much needed makeover and made it a huge hit even across our shores. Angelina Jolie made the saree hot by walking down the red carpet at Cannes in a Wendell Rodricks designed saree-gown making the entire fashion fraternity sit back and marvel at the versatility of our centuries old piece of clothing.

A perfect embodiment of the resilience of our heritage and values, the saree has now adapted itself to find support with the fashionistas across the globe!

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