The array of costumes of Karnataka presents a harmony of
tradition and modernity before the world. If you happen to
walk down any road in the capital city of Bangalore or
Mysore, chances are that you will find men and women wearing
clothes which range from formal office wear, which are
highly suitable for working environments of the Silicon
Valley of India, to Mysore crepe sarees, salwars, and sarees
of Karnataka's handloom cotton. At the same time, we can
even find many girls dressed in jeans and trousers. The
costumes of Karnataka reflect great diversity.
Due to the advent of computer technology and the wave of
modernity that it
has brought about in Bangalore and Mysore and other parts of
Karnataka, you now have more men and women adapting to
wearing clothes like trousers, jeans and salwars. You will
normally find men in Karnataka wearing formal shirts or
T-shirts and trousers and jeans to work and to colleges.
Trousers and jeans are mostly worn by men in the cities and
in most towns of Karnataka. But you still have the older men
wearing dhotis in the villages.
Though most men of Karnataka wear modern clothes as daily
wear, on special occasions they dress themselves in
traditional costumes like the panche. This is a dhoti-like
costume which is worn along with a traditional headdress
called Mysore peta. Though technology has caught up with
Karnataka in a big way, most of the women of Karnataka still
prefer the traditional costume which is the sari.
Especially the silk sarees, which are worn on special
occasions like marriages and Diwali and the Hindu New Year
or even other festive occasions like Ramzan and Christmas,
is a wonderful fashion statement of Karnataka. These silk
sarees come in abundant varieties and are very smooth and
sleek. They also come in gorgeous brocades and chiffons.
These exclusive creations, using gold threads interwoven to
create exquisite designs, have become highly popular and are
still the favourite costume of Karnataka, for the ladies.
The state is famous for its Mysore silk sarees.
During weddings, the bride is decked up in Kanchipuram silk
sari. These sarees are quite a craze in the weddings as they
are rich in texture and come in mind-blowing colours, and
are accompanied with the most exquisite designs. Kanchipuram
silk sarees are very expensive and are normally reserved for
the bride and for the very rich who can afford them.
The Mysore silk sari is the more affordable of the silk
sarees. It is more reasonably priced and is also made from
pure silk with silver zari. The Mysore silk sari is very
soft and smooth, and quite light in weight unlike the
heavier Kanchipuram sari. ..The Mysore silk sari looks more
lustrous and gives the wearer an elegant look. Most of the
women now wear cotton sarees which are more comfortable at
Yakshagana is a traditional dance of Karnataka where the
dancers wear colourful costumes. The traditional costume for
this dance comprises of dhoti, a pyjama, a jacket and a
loose gown. Most of the costumes of the dancers who perform
the traditional ritualistic dances of Karnataka, are eye
catching, colourful and bright.