It is a symbol of Rajput festivity, the only ensemble the bride will ever wear. Even if she can well afford and order a lehenga from the Sabyasachi Atelier, the Rajput bridal ensemble Poshak is the most poetic of all in the Indian wear segment. And one that has been worn by Rajput women at weddings since time immemorial.

Yuvrani Vasundhara Rajya Laxmi

So what exactly is a Poshak? It is a four-piece ensemble worn by noble and royal women on celebratory occasions. A rather straight-lined lehenga with eight crisp kalis to make its flowing form is worn with a fitted, backless, tie back kanchli which also plays the role of an ornamental inner. Over this tiny, sexy blouse goes a loose kurti with a low, cowl neck and etched slits on the sides. A square-shaped dupatta with gold ruffles on two sides completes this ensemble and is draped almost like half a sari. And firmly placed to cover the face in the case of the bride. Mostly made from the finest satin silk with a dupatta in chiffon, the Poshak is light in weight, delicate in its embroidery, and often made from a single shade of red, pink, yellow, and orange. Though many elderly women even opt for pastel, understated tones. 

Rani Sushma Kumari of Sahaspur Belari

A unique ensemble, Poshak is sacrosanct to a Rajput woman, its silhouette unflinchingly constant, and its form unchanged. Not to forget its near ethereal beauty that so perfectly cusps the beauty of many gorgeous royal ladies who do such justice to it. 

Traditionally embroidered with pure gold threads and embellished with precious pearls and semi-precious stones, the Poshak is made by just a few traditional craft Ateliers. Mangalmayee in Jaipur topping the list. Though the women from the noble family of Naila too are known to do full justice to this ensemble.

So next time you get invited to a royal wedding rest assured every beautiful woman in attendance will be clad in one. That is if she is not wearing the chiffon sari, another synonym of royal dressing.

Published on December 4, 2020 ByAnshu Khanna as at The Daily Guardian