It's the birthday of one of India's and the world's most iconic women: Indira Gandhi. In the '70s and '80s, Indira Gandhi was an independent decision maker who spoke with conviction. She was not only an inspiration to thousands of women, but she also showed how a powerful persona can rise above everything else, even powerful ideologies and men. We can only imagine a day in the life of someone like her - a woman prime minister who was also a mother, wife and daughter. And of course, Indira Gandhi was also a style icon; no one else really connects fashion and politics like her.
Today, on her birthday, let's look into some of the best fashion tips we can garner from the wardrobe of the "Iron Lady of India". Here are some ways you can incorporate power dressing into your daily fashion and channel a bit of Indira Gandhi.
Young writes of her outfits, "Without the bright chintz prints or brocade borders found in saris made from softer silk or georgette, [Gandhi's] starched silhouette was sturdier, and so was her message." This shows us that Indira Gandhi used her dressing as a powerful medium to send across a certain message. She always wore khadi, a fabric that played an important role in the Indian independence movement, which encouraged Indians to weave their own cloth as a form of economic empowerment to oppose British rule.
2. Travel Wardrobe:
Indira Gandhi was a woman who, not only was the PM of India and an MP from Rae Bareli, but also travelled the world. She was known for her elegant dressing sense even when she was abroad. Each time Mrs. Gandhi visited a foreign country, she would mix style sensibilities by wearing a lot of trench coats as well as saris, she also would trade her usual hairstyle for a more official beehive look. So the clothes showed a woman who embraced her heritage but with a modern twist.
3. Saree Drape:
Indira Gandhi always wore neatly pressed, pleated, stiff, starched hand woven sarees. She also used to drape her pallu casually over her left shoulder and over her head, something that all women politicians in India now follow, including Mrs. Gandhi's daughter-in-law and grand daughter. Grand occasions called for pure silk sarees, which were understated and chic. One of her favorite kinds was the Silk Kanchipuram saree from Tamil Nadu.
The Iron Lady of India never went over the top with accessories. Though she was from a very affluent family and could afford plenty, she never donned chunky jhumkas, necklaces or bangles. In fact, in the year 1962, Indira Gandi donated her jewellery to the National Defence Fund during India- China War. On a daily basis, she always wore a rudraksh beaded necklace around her neck and a simple HMT 'Janata' wristwatch, which was another distinct trademark in terms of her style.
5. Saree Blouses:
Indira Gandhi's taste for sarees didn't end with just the drape her saree blouses were even more subtle-the backs were as high as her nape, sleeves till her elbows, and the waists offered no peeks. Truly an Indian way of power dressing and showcasing royalty, don't you reckon?
What do you think of Indira Gandhi's sense of style? Do share your views with us, we love hearing from you.