A long flowing kurta, the extensive flare achieved through stitching together vertical panels of cloth, paired with churidar bottoms and dupattas – and you have the anarkali or the kalidar dress! It is believed that this style of dress evolved in India during the time of the Mughal emperor Akbar and the name of the outfit was derived from a famous courtesan of the times– Anarkali.
Though this history may be questionable, what is certain is that the anarkali suit or dress, is as grand and magnificent as an outfit belonging to the Mughal court should be! This is why anarkalis are extremely popular when it comes to wedding fashion or festive wear.
An anarkali kurta typically has a fitted bodice and a long, flowing frock-style skirt attached to it. It may be floor length or ankle length and even in some cases, calf length. They look grand and gorgeous and bring variation into a wedding trousseau which usually is filled up with sarees and lehengas.
33 Stunning Anarkali Bridal Dresses
1. Celeb-Worthy Chikankari Anarkali
Sonam Kapoor wears this stunning ivory toned chikankari anarkali for her Diwali celebrations! The flared kalis, the bodice resembling the peshwas and jagulfis worn by Mughal women look beautiful. The outfit has a vintage appeal.
2. Splendid Pastels
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This one is the dreamiest of the lot! Fit for every festival or occasion, this one comes in a soothing pastel blue tone, blurred out with a layer of golden net! The zardozi and sequin work elevates the look to a level of celestial beauty. The bootas all over and the ornate borders make the outfit look breathtakingly beautiful!
3. The Red Bridal Anarakli
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If you are bored of the red lehenga look for your wedding and want a slight variation, a flared, floor length anarkali dress with dupatta is the perfect alternative. The gold embroidery on this bridal anarkali is detailed and extraordinary.
4. White Cocktail Anarkali Dress
A bit of thread work on the neckline and a thick band of gold in the lower hem – this is all that needs to make this white anarkali dress stunning! Anarkali dresses have an exquisite cut. The hundreds of kalis on her dress and the pleated flared look they create nullifies the need of embellishments for this one.
5. Red Bridal Anarkalis
Another impressive maroon-esque red wedding anarkali! Paired with a flared skirt, this anarkali tells the story of an exotic royal garden, thread worked all the way round the kalis.
6. Blue-tiful Wedding Bridal Anarkalis
A layered wedding anarkali dress in a pastel blue tone – replete with premium zardozi embroidery also showcasing the use of stones, crystals and sequins! This ensemble is perfect for receptions and even bridal wear!
7. Brown in Glory
A dark brown grey-toned silk is used for the calf-length anarkali which is paired with a gold brocade skirt and woven design silk stole. The anarkali kurta has an ornate border and gold zari embroidery along the neckline and bodice.
8. Layered in Silver and Gold – Bridal Anarkali
A very unique design language is seen in this bridal anarkali dress! While light pastel blue and peach have been used, the heavy embellishments on this layered dress use both golden and silver zari and sequin embroidery along with zardozi work, stone work etc.
9. Post Wedding Blues
Ethnic wear other than sarees and lehengas, are of great use after the wedding! For post wedding functions amongst friends or relatives, a flared floor-length anarkali in a soothing powder blue shade and silver zari and sequin embellishments is sure to impress! So make sure you get hold of one of these for your wedding trousseau.
10. ‘Kali’ is the Code Word
This anarkali dress or kalidar dress is full of kali motifs! In other words it’s a floral anarkali. The round neck, full sleeve peach toned kurta has numerous kalis that flare and reveal intricately embroidered floral motifs in dark red, maroon and orange. The flared skirt bottom wear also flaunts similar motifs. The net dupatta is studded with embroidered kali-motifs too.
11. The Ornate Pishwa
A pishwas or pishwa frock is just another variation of the anarkali dress. They have the same fitted bodice look with kalis that flare below the waistline. Unlike traditional anarkalis, they are not usually ankle or floor length. Pishwas are mostly worn by Muslim brides of Hyderabad. This olive toned pishwa is intricately embroidered in zari threads, sequins, stones, zardozi metallic beads etc.
12. Hand Block Print on Indigo Cotton
Cotton anarkalis are a great option if you want to stick to ethnic wear on your honeymoon or post-wedding travels. In light and comfortable cotton fabrics and natural colors, these anarkalis boast hand block printing techniques like ajrakh, bagh, bagru, sanganeri etc.
13. Anarkalis in Royal Silks
They say purple is the color of royalty and the rich texture of this silk is no less regal. Gold zari thread work adorns the neckline and bootas are placed sparsely all over the dress.
14. The Splendour of Multi-Color Thread Work
This one-of-a-kind anarkali dress, a perfect choice for post-wedding travels or pre-wedding photo shoot, boasts exotic crewel work all over in multiple shades.
15. Quintessential Red Anarkali Suit
Wear it at your best friend’s wedding or add it to your own wedding trousseau – no Indian girl can do without a version of the red anarkali suit! This one boasts self-color embroidery and is studded with sequins. The calf length kurta is paired with straight ankle-length trousers and a solid dupatta.
16. Pastel Blue and Peach Wedding Anarkali
Wedding anarkalis are no less splendid that wedding lehengas! In fact, the flare of the kalis can any day replace the flare of the lehenga skirts! This beautiful light pastel blue anarkali dress is paired in contrast with a peach toned dupatta . The intricate gold zardozi work on the dress is breath-taking.
17. Mirror Work on Lilac
The detailed floral mirror work on this deep lilac toned anarkali looks exotic! The combination would photograph really well and is appropriate for pre-wedding occasions like mehendi and sangeet. Such an outfit will also do a great job on a pre-wedding photo shoot.
18. Grey-aceful Anarkalis
A stunning combination of a cool toned grey and pink make this outfit memorable! The bodice and sleeves have all over boota motifs. A line of zari embroidery runs all along the borders, neckline and along the kalis. The waist area from where the kalis start showcase ornate intricate work. It is paired with a chiffon dupatta having cut-work border.
19. Twirl Worthy
This bottle green silk anarkali dress with an excellently flared cut is totally twirl-worthy! The wide pink border creates a stunning contrast. Huge floral motifs in gold adorn the dress and a different one runs along the dark pink border.
20. Wine Toned Wonders
On a rich base of wine toned silk, gold and beige have been used resplendently to create an outfit which speaks for itself. The anarkali dress has a high neck and the sleeves are ornate. The borders of the dress and dupatta have thick bands of gold and beige.
21. Green and Pink Banarasi Bridal Anarkali
This gorgeous anarkali dress in dark green and gold has an ornately embroidered yoke area and a slit down the centre from the waistline revealing the gorgeous Banarasi brocade skirt underneath. The kurta and the skirt border have touches of contrasting dark pink which find full expression in the dupatta.
22. When Blue is the Color of Love – Bridal Anarkali
Calling this powder blue bridal anarkali dress ‘gorgeous’ would be an understatement! The outfit is out-of-this-world, almost celestial. The use of serene silver resham threads for the embroidery, layered with feather-light net, studded with crystals and sequins, the larger-than-life flare – all this and more redefine the language of love through this outfit.
23. Glitter and Gold – Bridal Anarkali
Sabyasachi the Boss! A contemporary option for those brides who prefer their wedding attire to be a little different – this all gold anarkali dress is low on the flare-quotient accentuating the figure of the wearer and comes with a belt detail that gives it a unique shape.
24. White Mirror-Worked Bridal Anarkali Dress
While white chikankari anarkalis have an appeal of their own, you can’t really carry that look on your wedding day. If you still want a white anarkali dress for bridal wear, go for something like this – intricate self color embroidery combined with mirror work and silver zari work.
25. Blue and Red Mirror Work Anarkali Dress
The combination of light blue and red itself steals the show! Moreover, the resplendent use of mirror work with mirrors of all shapes and sizes makes this outfit one of a kind! It is ideal for any Indian festivity as well as wedding related daytime functions.
26. Black. Period!
Nothing, simply nothing can match up to the richness, the class, the sophistication and the grandeur of black! In a decadent fabric, this jet black and beige anarkali dress is stunning! The intricacy of the beige Kashmiri crewel work on the kalis stand out on a background so deep.
27. Berry Toned Anarkali Dress
A combination of matte gold and berry is surely eye-catching. Add to this the gracefulness of the minimalistic embellishments and you have the perfect anarkali dress for attending an Indian big fat wedding.
28. Magnificent Banarasi Anarkalis
A luxurious silk in a dark purple tone is combined with a arctic blue and silver Banarasi brocade to create this magnificent anarkali dress. The sleeves have Banarasi work and so does the dupatta. The belt attachment and the yoke of the kurta flaunt zari and gotta embroidery in silver.
29. Brocades and Kalis
Plus size Bridal Lehenga and anarkali – The magic of brocades come alive in this gorgeous reddish-maroon anarkali dress. The gold brocade work on the kalis – running in three floral lines horizontally all around the dress – is simply stunning! The bodice has gold bootas.
30. The Summer Perfect Anarkali
This faded azure blue anarkali suit, layered in chiffons with printed floral motifs of cream toned tulips, ivory roses and bright blue chrysanthemums, is just perfect for the summer season.
31. Lilac Love
Some outfits stand out because of the unique colors they come in! This stunning lilac anarkali dress is one such outfit which also flaunts a decadent texture of a rich silk. Silver resham threads and crystals have been used for understated yet intricate embroidery. Boota motifs adorn the entire outfit as well as the net dupatta.
32. The Riot of Colors
Can any other outfit match up to the ethnic appeal of this multi-tone bridal anarkali dress? Displaying explicit gold zari embroidery, the dress uses to its advantage three bright colors dear to the Indian bridal palette – green, pink and gold! Looking for something gorgeous to wear on the mehendi function? This outfit is your destination!
A couple anarkali dresses or suits is a must for your bridal trousseau! They are comfortable to carry and come very handy in any function or occasion – before or after the wedding – in which you would rather not wear a lehenga or a saree! So, get in touch with us and get us to customize some stunning anarkalis, meant only for you!
33. Layered anarkali design
Again this bride chose a layered and floor length peach anarkali for her wedding day with net at the bottom and heavy embroidery above it to give a contrasting effect to the overall outfit. Now this is a style statement and piece in itself. This Indo-western beige double layered anarkali gown is perfect for a cocktail event as it’s chic, embellished and modern with those bell sleeves at the end of the arm. Go opt for this one if you want something Indian but with a western touch.
Conclusion – Anarkali
Who doesn’t love floor length outfits to embrace an elegant and sheer style. And what better than a floor length anarkali. This is an ever lasting choice for everyone and anyone who wants to stay rooted to the traditional design of an anarkali but still look flamboyant. You as a would-be bride can invest in all-embroidered, handwoven, thread work, lace-laden or even embellished anarkalis with a flowy fabric to give the “kalis” some added twirl when you go round and round with your partner for photos like georgette, net, shiffon or even silk and cotton.
The material and work of the anarkali also depends on the type of function and time of the day, along with season. Like you might not want to wear a heavily embellished bridal anarkali for a day mehendi, but a heavily embellished net or georgette might work for evening event in summers or even autumn.
Also, choose the right accessory to suit your anarkali in the best way so that the attention doesn’t drift away from the overall style of your anarkali.
Reference sites: Wiki