Trendy and Stylish Traditional outfits for Navratri Festival

The nine days of Navratri festival is a time for traditions and trends. On one hand there are fasts to be observed, special food to be prepared and prayers to be sent up to the heavens. On the other are night long dance parties, dandiya music, colourful clothing and a lot of cheer. We are here to help you make that second part better. Okay, the dandiya dance will have to be taken care of by yourself. But I can tell you how to look good while grooving to the drum-beats and swinging your dandiya sticks.

The first and only thing that comes to my mind when I hear the words Navratri and Dandiya are the mirror-worked chaniya cholis in a brilliant array of colours. In the home state of dandiya, Gujarat, these are the absolute choice of dandiya dress for everyone – from little girls to middle-aged mothers. The men get their share of mirror and resham work too. Some match their ladies chaniya cholis with traditional angrakhas and dhotis or at least wear a heavily embroidered waistcoat over their white kurtas.

But, times have changed and there is a need to look beyond century old fashion. That doesn’t mean that you discard your chaniya choli fascinations all-together. Just make a few additions or give it a modern twist to dust-off the tried and tested looks from yesteryear. And, if you are not too hell-bent on following traditions as it is, there are a million Navratri outfit options to choose from. Starting off with the skirt and blouse with dupatta look to frock-suits to keep you comfy, let’s take a walk through the latest Navratri fashions.

Okay, let’s just start with the original Chaniya choli – but with trendy twists.

Traditional and Trendy Outfit for Navratri Celebrations 

Take a look at these traditional and trendy outfit options to stay stylish throughout the long Navratri celebrations.

The Classic Black Outfit:

The Classic Black Outfit

It cannot get any more traditional than this. The main elements of the traditional chaniya choli are all there in this dandiya dress – the delicate but vibrant thread embroidery that form floral patterns then embellished with discreet mirror work and the typical drawstring detailing on the back of the blouse. These dandiya dress designs often and traditionally come in comfortable fabrics like cotton and cotton blends. The fabric is quite important as dandiya is no slow-dance. You’d appreciate a great level of breathability and ease of movement as you match step-to-step with the fast paced dandiya music.

Now, about accessorising the look – simply keep it original with traditional heavy metallic jewellery. A choker would be a great pick for the statement neck-piece. Match it up with heavy Rajasthani earrings and bangles. Add a mang-tikka with matha patti if you are in the mood for some serious jewellery indulgence. Anyways, the drawstring detailing on the back screams for an updo hairstyle. It would only be fair to adorn a simple updo with hair accessories. Get some chunky anklets to add that extra bit of your own music to the festivities. Keep the make-up simple to balance out everything else that is on the verge of going overboard. Better say no to the traditional dupatta – you’ll dance better and won’t spoil the look

Its all in the colours:

vibrant dandiya dress

If black and red is too simple for your Navratri fashion-consciousness, try this vibrant dandiya dress in a million warm hues that will set you apart on the dance floor. A sparkle here and there from the mirror and bead work can help too. See how the dupatta is kept simple with minimal embellishments and in a colour that contrasts with the rest of the ensemble. Keep the accessorising and make-up to a minimum too.

Dandiya Dance Print:

dandiya dress chaina choli

Navratri fashion often tend to sway towards dark base with vibrant thread embroidery in hues of warm yellows, reds and pinks. But if you do not want that dark theme and want to show off your fair side, try a dandiya dress like this. This somewhat rare white chaniya choli stands out not only because of the bright base fabric, but also because of the fabric paint alternative used in place of resham thread work. The motifs are also unique and truly echoes the spirit of Navratri traditions. It would be quite the task to find a ready-made fabric with such prints. But if you have an artistic side, get out those paint brushes and put paint to fabric. Voila! Custom made Navratri outfit – perfect if your dandiya night plans include winning the “Best dressed” title.

Mirror and Glitter:

mango yellow lehenga with an uber cool cut-work choli.

This one’s for the style divas out there – filmy and daring, but drop-dead gorgeous! Stand out from the crowd in this offwhite and mango yellow lehenga with an uber cool cut-work choli. Watch the mirror work and golden zari on your dandiya dress cast their charm as the spotlight falls on you while swirling your way across the dandiya dance floor. This one really doesn’t need any accessorizing. But a delicate gold earring and maybe kamarbandh could be a good idea. Pick out a thin kamarbandh of gold chains and wear it above the skirt waistline. The star of this ensemble is surely the blouse. So, do not take away any attention from this statement piece by wearing a heavy neckpiece. A pretty maang-tikka can be allowed to adorn the hair. Wear your hair in a bun, an updo or a braid to show off those wide shoulders and embellished sleeves.

Trendy Lehenga Choli Styles:

Now that we have had a look at the Navratri outfits that stay closest to the traditional sense of style, why not check out a few lehenga styles. After all the typical chaniya choli is nothing but a Gujarati-Rajasthani version of the ever popular lehenga-choli, made unique by the stand-out resham and mirror work.

Let’s take a look at some of the trendiest lehenga-choli styles you can sport for the dandiya dances or any other time during the Navratri festival.

Patch Work Lehenga

Patch Work Lehenga

Let’s start off with something totally down-to-earth but fresh in style. This patchwork skirt with an elastic waistband is the perfect solution to stay comfortable and stylish at the same time. Patchwork is not rare among Navratri dress styles. However, what’s different here is how the simple yet vibrant fabric squares come together to form a medley of colours that can surely add to the cheer of the festivities. The wide border at the bottom breaks the monotony to give an extra dimension to the ensemble. Interestingly, a plain black choli with a deep wide neck and long sleeves have been used to complement the skirt. This ensures that all the attention remains focused on the colourful skirt, but at the same time balances the overall look. The dupatta that mimics the skirt border is a good final touch to the look. I would suggest beaded jewellery and a simple hairdo to go with this Navaratri outfit. But you can always style it up or down according to your preference.

Embroidered Silk Lehenga:

Embroidered Silk Lehenga:

Worried about midriff baring dandiya dresses? Here’s your solution. A long choli is no less stylish than a short fitted one. If you are not comfortable in the traditional short choli and lehenga, you should try this look for the Navratri festival. Also, these colours work well from day to night. You could try other colour combinations too. Go for a self-print silk fabric or light brocade for the blouse and get it tailored to fit you perfectly. Sagging shoulders and baggy yokes won’t work well for this Navratri outfit idea. If you do not want the heavy sleeve-ends and lower border, switch it for a thin strip of gota patti or metallic beads. Try crushed silk or even tissue fabric for the skirt – add a couple uneven layers and a lot of volume for the drape. You sure want look great while swirling around the dance floor. Add some extra bit of drama with mirror worked patchworks and drawstring detailing on the waist. Accessorize according to taste – dress up with heavy jewellery and traditional makeup or dress down with discreet gold jewellery and dewy fresh-faced makeup.

Ikat Skirt:

Let’s take a bit of south Indian brocade inspiration and think out of the box. What you see here is an ikat skirt matched with embellished crop-top that works well as a lehenga-choli. To customize this look and get this navratri dress tailor-made for you, go exploring your’s or your mom’s saree collection. Pick out a brocade that pleases your eyes with the colour and zari work. Now ask the tailor to use the pallu for the choli and the rest of the saree for a well-draped skirt. Decide on how you want the neck and sleeves – I would suggest to keep it sleeveless and high-necked for the desired fusion look. Three-fourth sleeves and round necks can give it the traditional pattu-pavadai look. Make sure the choli is well-fitted and the skirt is voluminous with a wide zari border on the bottom. You can sew on sequins, stones and mirrors for that extra bit of glimmer. Accessorize appropriately with gold or silver jewellery – discreet but elegant. Carry a dupatta – preferably in tulle or chiffon – if required.

Royal Blue Lehenga:

Royal Blue Lehenga

If too many colors are not your kind of style palette, stick to two well-contrasting hues – like this royal blue and hot pink thread embroidered lehenga-choli set. Notice the tassel detailing down the waist – that’s all you need to gets heads turning. The skirt itself is made from tulle with a thicker base fabric. The gall of the skirt drape is made perfect by the heavy thread embroidery, which ads just the right bit of vibrancy to the whole Navratri dress option. The silver patchwork detailing right above the wide skirt border also adds an extra element to the lehenga. The choli itself stands out in its bright hot pink base fabric and matching pink thread embroidered motifs with blue highlights. Accessorize this dandiya dress look with silver or white metal jewellery to match the stand-out patch work. As the skirt’s waistline is quite plain, you can add a thin kamarbandh to spice things up too. Use soft shades of pink and peach for make-up.

Aquamarine Blue:

waist band of golden chains and a pretty little maang-tikka.

Now if you are looking for a totally out-of-the-box colour pallette for the Navratri festival, why not try something like this lehenga choli in sober chrome yellows and aquamarine blues. The floral motifs used all over the skirt makes it special and different from a basic pair of skirt and blouse. The choli prides itself on the embroidery detailing on its sleeves. Accessorize with red and gold bangles, a waist band of golden chains and a pretty little maang-tikka. If the dupatta is a must, use something in net fabric with heavy gota patti border.

Patola Lehenga:

Gujarati patola lehenga-choli and dupatta set.

To keep up with traditions while dressing up for the Navratri festival, you could try a traditional fabric for your dandiya dress, like this Gujarati patola lehenga-choli and dupatta set. Other fabrics you can try are bandhini /bandhej and  Rajasthani lehariya. The common theme for all these fabrics lies in their vibrance. Staying true to Indian traditional aesthetic trends, these home-grown fabric designs exhibit a multitude of colors that are perfect for the Navratri festivities.

Fusion of colours:

Fusion of colours:

Now, if colors are what turn you own for the festive mood. Here’s a look at what you can try out for this year’s Navratri celebrations.

Firstly, there are the all too familiar bright shades of red, yellow, pink and green. Go all out complimentary with a fusion of colours that lay close to each other on the colour wheel. Gradients work great in this case, especially on skirts. Stick to one colour out of the many from the skirt, for the choli. Choose to accessorise or not, but make sure you do not go overboard

green and pink, yellow and blue

Or you can try and create a contrast with bright shades that lay opposite to each other on the colour wheel. Like green and pink, yellow and blue. Balance it all up with a black choli and border detailing. Accessorize with silver jewellery or simple beaded jewellery.

Navratri outfit look.

You could also try out a combination of complimentary colours and black with golden highlights. However, keep accessorising to a minimal for this Navratri outfit look.


If pinks and red don’t excite you much, try this cool blue and green combination with gold for company.

So, there you go! That’s quite a handful of inspiration to keep you looking forward to the dandiya music and Navratri festival cheer. What would your Navratri outfit style be – traditional and trendy or chic and colourful?

Leave a Reply

Explore More

Traditional Outfits for your Navratri Festival Style Files

April 22, 2024 0 Comments 5 tags

As the year comes to a close, two of my favourite things come along – the winters and the Indian festival season. Its time to bring out all that glitter

Ghagra Choli Designs for Dandiya Nights

May 6, 2024 0 Comments 1 tag

Ghagra choli is also known as lehnga choli and has been a part of the Indian attire in the regions of Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh amongst many. It basically comprises of

Indian Wedding Dresses – Pink is the New Red

April 10, 2024 0 Comments 3 tags

Indian Wedding Dresses have with time, seen numerous changes in style. With the growing trend of wearing different colours at weddings, Pink has emerged as the new Red. Inspired by