If you were to wear just one item of clothing for the rest of your life, what would it be? Believe it or not, but for the gorgeous gals of Bollywood, it would most likely be a flowy, cool kaftan. And why not – it is super comfortable, has a free-flowing silhouette, can be styled in different ways and it comes in a plethora of colours and prints!
A royal affair!
If you reel back to this humble garment’s history, its origin is believed to be the ancient Mesopotamia (modern-day Middle East). Kaftan is a simplified version of ‘Khaftan’, a Persian word for a long-length tunic or a robe with full sleeves and a cinched waist. During the Ottoman empire (14th to early 19th century) it was mostly men who wore kaftans, embellished to the tee. Brocade, silk, satin, velvet and cashmere were the choice of fabrics to make the regal dress.
Gradually, kaftans piqued interest of North Africans in Morocco, West Africans and of the French in the 20th century, when luxury Maisons, Christian Dior and Balenciaga, designed kaftan-inspired pieces for their collections.
Kaftan mavens in India
Closer home, designers Payal Khandwala, Namrata Joshipura, Rajdeep Ranawat, Sahil Kochhar, Payal Singhal and Malini Ramani and Pria Katariaa Puri have their own, edgy take on kaftans.
From a royal garb to a chic loungewear to now being a wardrobe staple, kaftan has had quite a journey. So, whether you’re holidaying by the beach, sipping cosmos and martinis at a brunch date or attending a bride’s bachelorette – let the easy kaftan inspire your look.
Here, we look at how Bollywood divas are working up kaftans in all its glory.
A diva on a vacation! That’s Priyanka Chopra for you, who loves making fashion statements. Here, she is wearing a soft blue, silk kaftan dress by Rick Owens, cinched by a white waist belt.
Kareena Kapoor loves her kaftans and makes sure to share it with the world on Instagram. Here, she is wearing a House of Masaba number, a crepe mustard yellow kaftan with the designer’s signature tribal streak digital print.
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Aditi Rao Hydari
From tropical getaways to at-home parties, this sea green crepe kaftan sported by Aditi Rao Hydari is a fitting summer outfit. And if you like accessorising, throw on a neckpiece, a bracelet or a cute turrband on the head.