Winter weddings offer the best excuse to bring out the ethnic jackets, flouncy lehengas and heavy silks, designers say

When Sabyasachi Mukherji showcased a collection of voluminous outfits, with fabrics as varied as silks, velvet and satin and colours ranging from chocolate browns to deep maroon at the grand finale of Lakme Fashion Week Winter Festive 2013, he was spot on. Lightweight velvets and satins have slowly found acceptance in bridal trousseaus, especially in wedding held during winter. The rustle of heavy Kanchi and Banaras silks are irreplaceable, but along with these, designers have been experimenting with other fabrics that can help us beat the chill.

Hyderabad’s winter doesn’t have the bite of the Delhi chill is a common refrain. But through this month, a number of weddings are scheduled to take place in the city, and some of them in resorts that dot the city outskirts. If you’re attending one of these where pre and post-wedding functions extend till late in the evening, it doesn’t hurt to ward off the chill.

Focus on basics

Layer it up? We’ve heard that before. Some amount of planning goes into that layering. A random shawl or sweater will end up ruining the look. Designer Shravan Kumar Ramaswamy, before moving to other wardrobe essentials, suggests investing in good quality pashmina shawls in off-white, beige and black colours that can be teamed up with outfits in different colour palettes. Asmita Marwa emphasises on getting the basics right — not leaving your shoulders and mid-riff exposed to the chill.

Take a cue from winter/festive collections showcased at Lakme and Wills Lifestyle Fashion Weeks or the recent Amby Valley India Bridal Fashion Week. Ethnic jackets on lehangas, long tunics, long-sleeved blouses do the trick. The colour palette can vary from ivory whites to bright shades, says Shravan: “Wear sober shades for a morning event and bright ones for the evening. An ivory white sherwani will look great. Women can choose colours ranging from dry leaf green to cobalt blue, maroon to orange and purple to fuchsia pink. Coffee brown is the new black for this season,” he says.

It’s all in the fabric

Shravan roots for lightweight velvet, satin and hand-woven silks — from Kanchi, Dharmavaram, Peddapuram, Madhavaram and Srikakulam — besides the universal khadi.

For men, Shravan suggests tuxedos, jackets with brooch and a scarf, sherwanis in velvet, dhotis in woven silks. “Brouge shoes, what we call Oxford shoes, are big this season. Men should consider these shoes for winter weddings,” he adds.

“This is the time to bring out those blouses with long sleeves, wear jackets with high slits on saris and lehangas. Also, play with the drape of your sari and take the pallu over the neck. Some times, replacing a regular blouse with a shimmery tee can also make you look different,” says Asmita. A Banarasi sari worn with the right kind of shimmer/velvet top can set you apart from the crowd.