How To Dress In A Sari Petticoat?

Much like many Indian-Americans, my closet space is divided into two major clothing groups: Indian and everything else. About 80% of that Indian subcategory includes saris which many claim are too fussy to wear (imagine being wrapped in 4-6 yards of fabric), but are my absolute favorite type of Indian clothes! 

Each sari is worn with a blouse and wrapped over a petticoat, or a skirt, to keep it in shape and comfortable. I have a million of these petticoats in every color and they mostly just sit around until someone gets married or something, giving me a chance to show off my sari collection.

While reorganizing my closet recently however, I was tempted to re-style these petticoats into something fun for the summer! Here are my three attempts so far:

**A bright green petticoat paired with a sleeveless printed top

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**A bright pink petticoat paired with a white and gray stripped tank.

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**A black petticoat paired with a cotton string-tank (it’s actually a slip that goes under another dress)

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While many, including my sister, would never ever be caught dead in wearing an under-layer out in the open like this, I have to admit that I loved repurposing them into normal skirts. The light cotton makes them so airy and comfortable in this hot and humid weather. And I can’t deny how happy I feel with the bright pops of color.

Some things to keep in mind if you plan on wearing sari petticoats as skirts.

  • Wear a slip – Petticoats are usually made of very thin cotton, so make sure to wear a slip underneath. I like to use men’s boxer-briefs which are far more comfortable than a satin or polyester half-slip.
  • Look for uniqueness – Picking one that is bright in color, or one that has nice hem detailing, makes for a good choice as a stand alone skirt.
  • Seal the opening by the drawstring – I use a safety pin to avoid the “open zipper” look.
  • Wear it a little higher – I usually wear a petticoat under or over my belly button when wearing a sari. In this case however, I learned that hiking it up a little makes it more comfortable.
  • Pick a sleeveless top – In my experience so far, a short with sleeves makes the whole look fall apart. May be I haven’t found the right top, but until I do, I think the sleeveless tops balance off the otherwise long and full coverage skirt rather well.

So, dear Indian ladies, would you consider wearing your petticoats like this? I’d love to hear your thoughts or even get new ideas on how I can make my summer wardrobe a little more unique and exciting without spending any money!

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