Friday, November 5, 2010

Bollywood Bride: Aishwarya Rai in Jodha Akbar

For me, one of the unexpected side effects of writing this blog has been a growing appreciation for Bollywood cinema.  Growing up in North America has instilled in me a sense of cynicism that made it difficult to relate to the melodrama and over-the-top style of Bollywood movies. Or so I thought.  The truth is that the popularity and worldwide audience of Bollywood is testament to the fact that no matter who you are, there's something in it for everyone.  For me, it's the clothes.

I realized recently, that I never devoted a decent amount of time to covering the costumes of Jodha Akbar, which is a major oversight, considering the influence the movie has had over South Asian fashion, bridal fashion particularly, over the past two years. The movie, starring Aishwarya Rai opposite Hrithik Roshan as Jodha and Emperor Akbar, respectively is a narrative of the marriage of a Rajput princess and Mughal prince based loosely on actual events.

As is always the case with a production starring Aishwarya, no detail is spared in making sure it is a cinematographic marvel and the whole film is a joy to watch if you are a fashion spectator. The entire costume design was left in the very capable of hands of Neeta Lulla. Lulla was instructed to create a look that would be believable to the audience. Based on the reception of the movie, and a the successive influence on fashion, she more than accomplished her aims.

To counter the elaborate embroidery, fabrics, beadwork and embroidery called for in the making of these costumes, the colours used were warm tones of saffron, emerald, copper, brown, and henna red. The jewels too, were ornate and very heavy, admittedly unaffordable in real life. Even the male cast of this movie wore lots of jewellery, and if you have recently seen a groom wearing a jewelled turban, or embroidered sherwani, his outfit was influenced by the movie.

Because this a three hour movie, there were loads of costumes, and a lot of inspiration.  Unfortunately, I couldn't get to it all this week, and I'm gonna have to post it next week.  I just didn't want to end the week with nothing, you know? 


  1. loved this series of posts on jodha akhbar [all the ones on bollywood fashion actually!] thank you!!

    loving the new layout btw <3

  2. @Aisha...these are honestly the hardest to put together, but I am always pleased with the end result. Bollywood fashion seems to resonate with everyone, don't you think? That and the cheesy song and dance numbers...even if we deny it.


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