Saturday, April 14, 2012

Imagine if Black Women Wore Sarees!!!

I LOVE SAREES! I saw some women in the mall yesterday wearing them. They are the ultimate feminine dress and they look so beautiful with their elegant designs, vibrant colours, jeweled accents, and delicately draping fabrics. They scream I AM WOMAN! When looking at a woman in a saree, depending on the style, she looks delicate and you don't want to do anything to mess up the beautiful garment. Sometimes the women have to hold the saree making it incompatible with carrying things, physically active tasks, or doing anything but standing or sitting pretty lol. This is what makes them so feminine because they are fit for someone sitting on a pedestal! They look like princesses! They are walking works of art similar to Geisha in kimonos.

These images were made using saree doll makers.
Just imagine, what if Black women had always worn sarees or started wearing them? Wouldn't we instantly look more feminine, delicate, and princess-like? Would we look more respectable? Would we be treated more like delicate feminine creatures who should be cherished and protected from harm? (please take a look at Michelle Obama in sarees!!!). I'm just daydreaming with this blog and I'm not actually suggesting you go out and buy a saree. People will look at you like your're crazy and Indian women will complain about cultural appropriation. Do we have traditional African or Caribbean clothing and would they actually look good on women today (*sigh*)? But honestly, we just need one high profile Black celebrity to start doing this and it could actually happen :)

I'm sure that in other countries women in sarees are probably disrespected sometimes but I'm just focusing on Black women in Western countries. Should Black women adopt a standard feminine garb? I think they would if it said Gucci lol! Wouldn't it be wonderful if Black women started wearing sarees all the time! I would be so happy!!!


  1. I love sarees too!!

    I recently couldn't resist purchasing three different types of saree fabric (orange with gold accents, pink with gold accents, and red with gold accents)from my local fabric store so that I can make short skirts out of the material. I, too, don't know if I could "pull off" wearing a full saree the traditional way. My Indian girlfriend told me that the ladies get angry when they see non-Indian women wear sarees because they are usually worn wrong. She told me that they have to be positioned in a certain way. Therefore, at this point in time I'm just going to make my saree short skirts and perhaps later on some tops when I'm a more experienced seamstress.

    Thanks for sharing your opinion regarding sarees. I agree that if more women of different ethnicities started wearing them then perhaps the "look" would catch on for those of us who are more feminine minded. It would be our way of honoring and expanding Indian culture to the masses.

  2. Ha, I know exactly what you mean about the saris...I've always loved the elegance and and ultra-femininity of the style but haven't actually bought one because I've not been sure about whether it would offend, in like you mention, a "cultural appropriation" way.

    The discussion of "traditional" African/Caribbean styles for ladies, reminds me of some of the elegant head scarves and traditional clothes of many West African women>>>

    I LOVE the style of these, and kinda like saris, they're ultra feminine and can be very elegant. :)

    I don't do the full traditional head wrap thing but I do love using scarves in my hair in creative ways!

  3. I asked my girlfriend her opinion regarding non-Indian women wearing sarees and she graciously gave me permission to reprint her comment (below):

    I don't think it's offensive, as long as you're wearing it as it is intended to be worn. (meaning don't flip it onto the opposite shoulder, don't cut it, don't wear anything but the intended blouse under it). A lot of my sister's American friends wore saris at her wedding and my aunts happily helped them put them on (I don't know how to put one on by myself, it takes practice). I've seen Caucasian girls wearing kimonos and not at a Japanese-themed event, so it's fine. :)

    But more importantly, where and when would you wear one? I think if you are going to an Indian concert or cultural show or a wedding, those are your best bets, but you will need someone to help you put it on. You also need to buy a special half slip and I don't know where to get those. My Mom advises not to buy Indian clothes in the US because of the insane price markup but I don't know how much choice you have. And I don't know if you will want to invest the money if you aren't going to get much usage out of it. :(

    Sorry to be such a downer, but there are other fancy Indian outfits you might like better, because they are easier to put on, you can sometimes mix them with jeans.

    Here's a link to an online store, but you'll see what I mean about the price. They are not this expensive in India:

    These are the kind you can mix with jeans and wear more frequently, then wear them with black pants for a more formal event:

    Lady Arabella Victoria

  4. Hi all,
    I am an Indian woman and loved to read all your opinions about the sari. In my opinion, it is not at all offensive. It's only that if you can wear it correctly it looks more elegant for which you need little practice. I have seen some celebrities wearing them which looked like wrapped than draped gracefully. In this case it does not really bring out the beauty of it. I feel sari would look very beautiful on black women because of your beautiful bodies. Sari accentuates the curves and sexy parts by hiding flab at tummy, thighs and above the waist line on your back. If you don't have these issues you can still wear it in a sexier way. My advice is choose right material, colors, and designs with a proper blouse (choli - which is very important to complete the look of the sari). For example, if you feel you are skinny and you want to look a bit fatter, you can go for thicker and stiff material. If you are on the plus size, go for flowing material which makes you look awesome. If you are tall you can go for any prints and patterns where as if you are petite go for simpler and elegant prints as bigger patterns look disproportional. Always go for a right blouse choosing right neck and sleeve cuts..go girls rock..(hope i did not say anything offensive to anybody here)..cheers.. snigdha

  5. You can also wear Sari inspired things aw well. You can buy your own fabrics and make sari inspired dresses. I love Saris the colors are beautiful.

  6. I've always thought Sari's are rather elegant clothing and ultra lady like. There is something about the fabric and bright colors that scream girly, womanly and to be cherished.

    Now there are elegant "African" clothes. There are very elegant "Ankara" dresses. On the high end, there is designer Doru Olu who use Ankara in his designs.

    For girly western clothes, there is African-American designer, Tracey Reece.

  7. Speaking of elegant Blk women, Shala Monroque is ubber elegant and chic. You can check out the Google images of her and you can check out her forum on

    Honestly, Shala is like a blk Jackie O. Just grace, poise, comportment and glamour.

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  9. I'm in a Indian Bollywood Dance group and have worn sarees many times in performing traditional Bengali dances. They're gorgeous!

  10. I agree the sarees are beautiful; but, not for every day wear. They appear a little confining. Naomi looks simply beautiful.


  11. I acturly belong to a hare krishna movement in my country and i wear sarees to attend temple. I love sarees and they do look elegant and feminine.

  12. I loove saris. I have a bunch of French chiffons that were gifted to me by various Indian friends (who know that I love saris) and every now and then I order more traditional Indian saris online...and I wear these all the time! I've worn them to parties, to church, to the supermarket, and to the theater. I always get compliments. Sometimes I get weird looks from uncultured people, but I don't care.

    Saris make you feel chaste and feminine...yet also really sexy. Once an Indian guy walked up to me and was like, "Black girls look really hot in saris." Then he hit on me relentlessly until he got my number lol.

  13. Traditional Indian fashion is so feminine.

    Have a look at these websites if you want to order some:

    One can also be creative with Indian fashion. It does not have to be a whole Indian look. One can do feminine "fusion" fashion.

  14. I love to wear my sari! My hubby is from Nepal and has bought me some. I've learned to wrap them myself and I feel so so sweet in them.
    And I always get comments from other Indians or Nepalis about how good the sari looks on me.
    Also, I think it is more of a compliment to them that I'm wearing their if I'm bridging a gap by just coming into their fashion.
    I'd love get involved in a fashion show or other SouthAsian event to show that we love their clothes and recognize the femininity of their style.
    Any ideas would be super appreciated!
    Thanks for your post!

  15. Kindly tel me wat colour saree would suite for black skinned girls. Please suggest through mail.

  16. My son recently graduated from West Point. I wore a Saree to the formal banquet the night before graduation and felt beautiful. If anyone thought it it inappropriate for a Black woman to wear a Saree, they kept it to themselves. I received only complements.

    I have loved the Saree since I was a little girl, I own 5 of them, two which are formal and 3 which can be worn on less formal occasions. I wear them whenever I like because I love how they make me feel - not to mention they are more comfortable and flattering for my "generous" curves than any Western garb.

    I was "schooled" on how to wrap the Saree by the owner of the Indian store. Hopefully I do it well! I am careful to be sure I use the proper adornment. Generally as a matter of personal choice I will wear a Tika only when it is really formal because the ones I own are elaborate. I do not use the Bindi because the religious significance traditionally associated and because I am not married.

  17. i am a black girl. i have always thought the indian dress is really sexy and feminine. so the other time i went shopping with my mum, i bought a punjabi( hope its the right name), the top is maroon with the decorations at the edges, the pants are yellow, very bright yellow and the scarf is yellow. i wore it to church actually and i was looking very pretty and decent i must say. i want to get me a sari this weekend i just dont know the perfect colors to go for. best thing is that they are not so expensive after all.

  18. Great article.I love silk Chinese dresses and blouses. I wear them all the time. My mother also wear them too.