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Differentiate between Churidar and Salwar Kameez

Updated on January 6, 2010

Popularly known as the Indian suit or Pakistani Suit, a set of Salwar Kameez normally constitutes of a tunic called Kameez, a baggy trousers called Salwar and normally a matching stole called Dupatta.

 Kameez varies in length from thigh line to knee line. Embezzled with delicate patterns and stone works, a Kameez is the main piece of the set. A Salwar is usually gathered at the hip either with a drawstring or elastic. Dupatta is often weaved in sheer fabrics and add brilliance to the Salwar Kameez.  

Churidar Kurta or Churidar Pyjamas, on the other hand, are tightly fitting trousers and are often referred to as Moghul Breeches. While stitching these are cut wide at the top and they narrow down as they reach ankle. This style is preferred more because it emphasis the contours of the leg. Churidar are usually cut longer than the length of the leg and finished with buttoned cuff tightly fitted at the ankle. The excess length then falls loosely over the leg in ripples or folds and often resemble the bangles, hence the name “Churi-dar”

While Salwar is a pyjama like trouser drawn at the hipline either by drawstring or elastic, Churidar is tighter, fitting at the hips, thighs and ankles and look more like leggings. The latter one is longer than the legs and their extremes are crinkled and crumpled to fit.

Both Salwar Kameez and Churidar Kurtas are made from variety of fabrics including cotton, silk, satin, and crepe, georgette, brocade, tanchoi and heavy satins even with real gold and silver embroidery, studded with precious stones. Elaborate patterns are done with Phulkari, Chikankari, Meenakari embroidery works or Kundan, Resham, Zari and Zardosi patterns. Other patterns include Bandhej, beaded sequins, mirror work, Leharia and block cum handprints.

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