The kaftan is a long flowing, loose fitting dress that is synonymous with comfort and relaxed style. The kaftan is a popular dress form worn in many parts of the world, particularly in Persia, the Middle East, Pakistan and India. It is worn in regions where temperatures can soar high during the summers. The loose and flowing nature of the kaftan permits the body to remain cool and enables air circulation.
History of the Kaftan
The earliest documented use of the kaftan was in the 14th Century during the period of the Ottoman Empire. It was initially worn only by men but because of its modesty, age appropriateness, versatility and ability to suit all body shapes and sizes, it was quickly adapted to women’s wear.
Style and Design
The kaftan is a lengthy, loose fitting garment that reaches the ankles. The sleeves are extended towards the wrist. A kaftan can be from a variety of materials such as cotton, polyester and rayon. They may feature floral prints, a fusion of various colors or more whimsical patterns. Some kaftans are simple, featuring just a single color.
High fashion kaftans are typically made from silk or composite silk fabrics and often feature intricate embroidery and fine stonework in the front. Kaftans can be found in any color and some even have ribbons and buttons as embellishments.
Modern Interpretation of the Kaftan
Traditional kaftans reach the ankle and even the floor and cover the entire arm. Modern kaftans may be as long as a T-shirt or reach just below the knee and usually have short sleeves. Some even have pockets on either side.
A kaftan can be accessorized according to the occasion to which it is being worn. For instance, if you’re attending a dinner party, you will likely wear a silk kaftan with heavy embroidery. In this case, wearing a pair of heels with a clutch purse would suit this attire. You would also stylize your hair and makeup accordingly.
For more casual occasions or even at home, a kaftan can be worn with open-toed sandals or even a casual pair of bellies.
Stay cool, comfortable and chic this summer by wearing a kaftan. Visit Indian Wedding Saree to view our exclusive kaftan collection.