My Style Journey: A Qissaa of Fusion Fashion, told through Sarees

My Style Journey: A Qissaa of Fusion Fashion, told through Sarees

Anyone who knows me today knows of my love for fusion fashion. They know that if I’m in the mood, I’ll turn up in a quirky combination – perhaps of a black dress with purple sports shoes, or of dhoti pants with a suit. I might turn my scarf into a shrug, or pair my mom’s saree with my top.

My Style Journey - A Qissaa of Fusion Fashion, told through Sarees: JustODThings

My Style Journey – A Qissaa of Fusion Fashion, told through Sarees

My Style Journey: A Qissaa of Fusion Fashion, told through Sarees

But, when I’m not in the mood, I’ll pull a t-shirt out of my dad’s wardrobe. Jeans and t-shirt – that’s what I feel most ‘at home’ in. Wearing a pair of denim pants with a loose, shapeless t-shirt feels like following my animal instinct. It’s this primal outfit in which I feel most at home.  I survived my years of high school college and post-graduation in, when a cute top or a kurti were the fanciest I would get for special occasions like parties and weddings. Honestly.

From Dad’s wardrobe to Mom’s

It’s not that I never noticed when the bandage dress ruled the red carpet, when the androgyny started to go big on the runway, or when other trends came and went. But, I chose the easiest way out. And the easiest, most comfortable way out was in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. But, over the years, my society’s expectations to dress a certain way, and my need to conform to the set standards of image presentation made me leave behind my jeans, tops, and tees to explore my mom’s collection of sarees, salwars, and more. And, every time I was caught in a saree, it encouraged my relatives and family members to gift me the most gorgeous Indian ethnic pieces.

My Personal Style - A Qissaa of Quirk and Fusion: JustODThings

My Personal Style – A Qissaa of Quirk and Fusion

And then, I found myself

It was only after I started working that I found something fun and creative in playing around with the items in different wardrobes. I started experimenting, and eventually, I found out that it was through experimentation that I would be able to constantly express myself. I broke up with my juvenile need to meet expectations. And, experimenting has taught me to be bold and ignore people’s reactions. It’s likely that the same people who will shriek and gasp and faint to see a new, quirky look, will find the inspiration to try out their own quirky outfit ideas next time they step out.

My Fusion Saree Story

There are some things we are not supposed to mess with, including tradition. And, saree being a traditional wear, I know I’m not supposed to play with it. But, I do, because traditional or not, it’s always possible to mix and match elements of different forms of fashion. That’s why I brazenly team my sarees with unlikely elements, western or otherwise, and experiment with draping styles.

Saree and Denim – Street Style Recreated with Elegance

I have tried my hand at saree with jeans before. It’s one of my favourite ways to go really bold. For me, sarees are all about beauty and grace. Jeans, on the other hand, represent an active and outdoorsy quality. In fact, denim, in general does that for me. In this outfit, I have draped the beautiful Bengal handloom saree with a pair of inky jeans. The “ulta pallu” style adds elegance and sophistication to the look, as opposed to the street style of washed out jeans. The brown boots complement the pair. What I was particularly excited about was the ‘blouse’, which is a denim crop kurti! White and blue is a universal favourite colour. Thus, in ths outfit, I have tried my own version of the blue-jeans-with-white-shirt look, and given the saree a street style touch with elegance.

Bengal Handloom Saree from Qissaa - Saree with Jeans Look: JustODThings

Bengal Handloom Saree from Qissaa – Saree with Jeans Look

Saree and Palazzo – A Bold Story

Having tried the saree with jeans look a couple of times now, I decided to take a step ahead, and styled the saree with a pair of black palazzo pants. My draping showed off the pair perfectly. The black print has been complemented by the colour of the pants and the top. I absolutely adore batik, and this one is a unique piece with block batik print on tussar. To give the look an edge, I have styled it with a crop top with trendy ruffles and fish net patches. The fusion element of the look has been completed by the nude pumps. Amidst all the dark shades, the bright colours of the eyewear chain add a quirky, almost ‘desi’ pop to the whole look. It was a bold outfit for me: it takes courage to decide not to conform to traditional rules, at least when it comes to sarees.

Tussar Saree with Block Batik Print from Qissaa - Saree with Palazzo Look: JustODThings

Tussar Saree with Block Batik Print from Qissaa – Saree with Palazzo Look

White Saree with Black Meshy Crop – A Tale of Comfort

I love white sarees. Back in high school, wearing a saree and performing at the Teachers’ Day function was important for us; and, I wore white to that event. A white Georgette with golden droplets in my Mum’s wardrobe has always captured my attention. And, I fell in love with this white handloom piece from Qissaa. I wore it with a black crop. The red thread neck-piece stands out against the monochrome. The hair-bun in this look, the fishnet of the top, and the saree’s white shade, which, besides being classy, is also breezy and comfortable, make the whole look perfect for spring-summer and summer! My style mantra being, “comfort first”, I always prefer my hair either in a bun, or to simply let it down down, as they fall on my shoulders and face. Both these fuss-free styles go well with this outfit.

Bengal Handloom Saree from Qissaa - Saree with Crop Top Look: JustODThings

Bengal Handloom Saree from Qissaa – Saree with Crop Top Look

Of Saree, Kimono-Sleeved Top, and Orange Lips

I have never been a fan of cotton blouses. I can’t really put my finger on the reason, but I know I have avoided sarees because of them, until I realised that I could sort the problem by wearing a top instead. In this outfit, I have yet again picked a tussar saree with block batik print and paired it with a simple but cute top with kimono sleeves. Ruffles are in vogue this season, and in this outfit, I was surprised to find that the way the sleeves gather gives an almost Tagorean touch to the final look. Such a traditional effect from a contemporary combination! I also particularly like how this top sits on me, in a gentle way, and adds an element of refinement and modesty. Add to that the orange lips and the double bindis, and you have a young, fresh flavour.

Tussar Saree with Block Batik Print from Qissaa - Saree with Top Look: JustODThings

Tussar Saree with Block Batik Print from Qissaa – Saree with Top Look

A Traditional Qissaa of Saree – with a Twist

One look at this Nakshi Kantha saree, and you will want to go traditional on it. It is just so Bangali, not only because of the misti sound of its name, or the embroidery that originates in this region, but because of the colours! Green and brown threadwork in different patterns across the light beige body made this saree preciously, typically Bengali in nature. And, of course, I had to drape it in a Bengali style of wearing a saree, with all the detailed pleats everywhere to showcase the ornate nakshas everywhere. This is the kind of saree that screams for a keychain for a latkan. I loved how the However, I had to add my own touch to it, and make it more ‘me’, I wore it with my black crop top. While the mesh patch gave it a modern twist, the trendy ruffles added a traditional touch.

Nakshi Kantha Sarees from Qissaa - Bengali Style Saree with Crop Top Look: JustODThings

Nakshi Kantha Sarees from Qissaa – Bengali Style Saree with Crop Top Look

Going Classy with Black – in a Saree and Crop Top, and Junk Jewellery

I love black. Everyone loves black. it’s classy, beautiful, and the easiest way to look fabulous. When in trouble, I go for black, be it for a simple coffee date or a fancy dinner party. And, if that black outfit has a touch of sheer, like in this black Kota piece, there’s that right amount of sensuousness. This kind of material makes a classic outfit like saree chic and youthful. I left the pallu open to optimise the translucence. The top’s mesh patches complemented the thin saree, and totally amped up its charm. The centrepiece of this look is the chunky neckpiece. I’m a huge fan of beaded accessories. Mum and I used to make them together. She is trendy that way; I’m glad women of all ages are now wearing them, even with traditional wear. They’re quirky and unique. The saree just needed this ‘me’ touch.

Saree with Beaded Neckpiece Look - Kota Sarees from Qissaa: JustODThings

Saree with Beaded Neckpiece Look – Kota Sarees from Qissaa

Fusion Fashion, as I see it

The key to creating a good fusion look is to make everything blend. It can be a mix of western and ethnic, or casual with formal, an androgynous look, or a unique attempt. In every case, I try not to pick elements that are too different to make sense. It looks like I’m trying too hard. Like, I would never wear a Banarasi with a tux. That’s why I chose the above sarees. They capture the essence of ethnic fashion and are still contemporary. They were easy to team with crops, jeans, palazzos, etc.

Every day, I play with my clothes. I pick items I feel like wearing, without spending hours, and they reflect my mood. Those of us with the privilege to choose what we wear tell a story through our personal style. So, as I choose to portray different elements in me through fashion, I tell the world that I am not to be taken for granted.

And that, my friends, is my style Qissaa. What’s yours?

My Style Qissaa, told through Sarees: JustODThings

My Style Qissaa, told through Sarees

Saree: Qissaa
Jewelry: Qissaa
Photography: Social Bong

Oendrila De

The unique, odd, crazy journey of OD, i.e. Oendrila in the world of fashion, food and everything else in this big, bad, beautiful world.

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2 Responses

  1. Sapna says:

    Wearing saree is really tiring for me but your post n impressive looks are kind of motivation.
    Keep sharing such good stuff

    • Oendrila De says:

      Thank you so much, Sapna. You are always so sweet and encouraging! As for sarees, I think the possibility to have fun with them is endless. Hope to see your take on it, soon 🙂

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