Evolution of Indian Fashion: From Traditional to Contemporary - Inayakhan Shop

Evolution of Indian Fashion: From Traditional to Contemporary


Indian fashion is a captivating tapestry of culture, tradition, and innovation. Over centuries, it has evolved from being steeped in tradition to embracing contemporary styles and global influences.

In this blog, we will take you on a journey through the fascinating evolution of Indian fashion, highlighting the key milestones and trends that have shaped it into what it is today.

1. Traditional Roots:

Indian fashion traces its origins to ancient times when clothing was deeply rooted in culture and tradition. The diverse regions of India contributed to a wide array of traditional clothing styles, including sarees, dhotis, sherwanis, and lehengas. These garments were crafted with intricate embroideries, handwoven fabrics, and vibrant colors, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of the country.

2. Colonial Influence:

The British colonial period in India had a significant impact on Indian fashion. Western clothing styles, such as suits and dresses, began to influence urban fashion, especially among the elite. This fusion of Indian and Western elements gave rise to unique attire like the Indo-Western sherwani and gowns with Indian motifs.

3. Post-Independence Era:

After India gained independence in 1947, there was a resurgence of interest in traditional Indian fashion.

Leaders like Mahatma Gandhi promoted Khadi as a symbol of self-sufficiency and nationalism, leading to its popularity as a fabric of choice. The saree and kurta-pajama became iconic symbols of Indian identity and pride.

4. Bollywood Influence:

The Indian film industry, Bollywood, played a pivotal role in shaping fashion trends. Actresses like Madhubala, Rekha, and Madhuri Dixit became style icons, influencing the way women dressed across the country.

Bollywood also popularized fusion styles that incorporated Western elements into traditional Indian clothing.

5. The Rise of Designers:

In the 1980s and '90s, Indian fashion saw the emergence of talented designers who blended traditional aesthetics with contemporary design.

Names like Ritu Kumar, Manish Malhotra, and Sabyasachi Mukherjee created a new wave of fashion that celebrated both heritage and modernity. Their designs became synonymous with luxury and sophistication.

6. Globalization and the Internet:

With the advent of globalization and the internet, Indian fashion began to transcend borders. Indian designers started showcasing their collections on international runways, and Bollywood fashion gained global recognition.

The availability of Indian fashion online made it accessible to a global audience, leading to a fusion of global and Indian styles.

7. Sustainable and Eco-Friendly Fashion:

In recent years, there has been a growing awareness of sustainability in the fashion industry. Indian designers have embraced eco-friendly practices, using organic fabrics, natural dyes, and promoting fair trade. Sustainable fashion has become a significant trend in India, aligning with global efforts to reduce the environmental impact of the industry.

8. The Streetwear Revolution:

Indian youth have been at the forefront of the streetwear movement, creating a unique fusion of traditional and contemporary styles. Streetwear brands and influencers have popularized casual yet stylish attire that combines elements of Indian and Western fashion.

9. Gender-Fluid Fashion:

Indian fashion has also witnessed a shift towards gender-fluid clothing, with designers challenging traditional gender norms. Unisex and gender-neutral fashion is gaining acceptance and recognition in India.


The evolution of Indian fashion is a testament to the country's dynamic cultural landscape and its ability to embrace change while preserving its rich heritage.

From traditional garments rooted in history to the globalized, sustainable, and gender-inclusive fashion of today, Indian fashion continues to evolve, inspiring creativity and self-expression for generations to come. It is a remarkable journey that celebrates diversity and innovation in the world of style.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.