Young ladies are out on the streets on the day of Pahela Falgun -- the first day of spring, celebrating the advent of the beautiful season wearing a 'bashanti' coloured cotton sari, red lipstick and multi-coloured glass bangles.
Spring reminds everyone of the bright colourful flowers, sweet rays of the sun, mild melody of the birds and hence the effect on the outfit. Many poets, writers and lovers have written ballads and sonnets on this month motivated by the romantic atmosphere and the beautiful charm of the flowers. Youthfulness, freshness and romance are prominent far and wide encouraging everyone, young and old to, embrace the season with delight.
Ever since independence, Bangladeshi women have been celebrating this festive season in a traditional way, dressing in the long-established looks. Changing times have seen a revolution in our sense of fashion and women today want to adorn themselves in trendy styles yet keeping a close tie with the roots.
Wearing the same familiar cotton sari with a tad bit of change in the colour, from a subtle yellow to a bright orange is hardly the rage now. If you wanted to look different this year, here are a few suggestions...
The 'deshi' look with a bang
Wear the cotton Tangail sari in blood red, magenta or fushcia accessorising your look with flower caps and fresh flower jewellery. Yes! Just like the ones that are prevalent in 'Gaye Holud' programmes. You can wear the flower wreath slightly angled on the top of your head to ooze out a stylish charm.
If you are not so much into saris but want to don the 'deshi' look do not feel disheartened; you can do so by wearing long skirts in bright solid colours (khadi material) and matching tops/kurtis with terracotta jewellery or dry flowers in antique gold hue to achieve that perfect, graceful look. The flower wreath can also be used to accessorise your hair but make sure the flowers do not overpower your entire look.
For those who are not so up front with trying out radical styles but want to look a bit different from the other years, please try on a different look with a contrast blouse. If you are wearing a yellow/orange sari opt for a shocking pink or magenta blouse or you can go sleeveless. Colourful glass bangles are a must-have to complete this traditional expression.
The elegant look
Flowing Greek-style long gowns seem to be the recent fad in Bangladesh. You can choose one with floral motifs this Falgun and count the number of heads that turn as you walk.
The chic look
Wear jeans and top it with a floral printed georgette shirt. The flowers imprinted can be prominent and colourful, otherwise the base colour of the shirt needs to be bright.
The Bohemian look
Fashionable girls can sport ruffled floral skirts that give out the high-spirited look with a bright but solid-coloured top. You can also top it up with a cute sun-hat. Turkish floral printed pants with cute tops are also an appealing option. If this look is too Westernised or edgy for you there is more on the list
The casual look
If you are at work or somewhere where you feel it looks odd to overdress, it does not necessarily mean that you cannot celebrate the beauty of the season. You can wear a regular block-printed kameez in bright colours such as light green, bright yellow, orange, etc.
You can also put on formal wear like a blazer with a white shirt and black pants. In this case you can replace your regular blazer with a colourful one or a floral printed one and even if this is too much for your sensitivity, then just a simple colourful scarf as an accessory can be the perfect option. You can put it on around your neck only when you feel comfortable.
If you have had a very busy day and you have completely forgotten about the occasion or you feel underdressed in comparison to your friends and colleagues, do not fret.
Go outside to a regular flower shop and adorn your hair with a garland of your favourite flower. Just a single flower bud will also do during desperate times. The basic idea is to feel festive, welcoming the season with all the warmth.
Whatever style you pick, the main point is to feel comfortable. You must also remember that the makeup and the hairdo must also complement the attire. Bare minimum makeup is sensuous and the hair can be tied in a bun when donning the very traditional look.
The main idea of style is not to be immaculate and show others the level of thought you put into the entire process, but to be personally happy and genuinely feel something for the new season and pay respect to it by putting on something that bears a similarity, like a bright coloured bag, a fresh flower tucked into the bun, colourful tops, etc.
So as you head out for that Falgun musical soiree or just a gathering of friends make sure you look neat, trendy and a whole lot 'deshi'.