Most women prefer wearing a saris (a straight piece of cloth clad around the body as a long clothing) with short blouses. They place its movable end over the shoulder or head. Prosperous women may be dressed in saris made of silk, with boundaries of gold thread. Many women in urban areas wear pyjamas, full trousers with an extended blouse and a cloak. Jeans and T-shirts, Western style of clothing are gaining popularity nowadays. Like last Indian women, women in Kerala wear jewellery, particularly earrings & bracelets. Many women also carry a kumkum (round dot) in the center of the forehead. The kumkum, which is generally prepared from a black or red powder, is regarded a mark of beauty.
It is during the festivals and celebrations, particularly Onam and Vishu, that one can see the characteristic Kerala covering when the women in ‘Set Saris’ (white saris with boundaries of gold thread (Kasavu)) and blouse corresponding the sari border colour could be perceived with men, who prefer white dhoti with ‘kasavu’ boundaries for such celebrations. Young girls wear extended skirts and blouses of several colours.
Most of the rural people, principally females, do not wear shoes & when footwear is required, they prefer sandals.
However, Throughout Kerala, Western dress is more and more in vogue, chiefly among urban and educated males, and Western-style school uniforms are worn by both girls and boys in many schools, even in the rural areas of Kerala.
Traditional clothes of Kerala reflect the simplicity and intrinsic lifestyle of Malayalis. Most of the people of both sexes usually wear white attires. The main clothing which individuals wear is highly traditional. The form of costume worn by the people like Mundu & Neriyathu has a white cloth piece containing golden zari boundaries indicating royalty for men and women.
Mundum Neriyathum is a traditional & cultural dress worn by women in Kerala. The traditional section is Mund that is the lower material consisting 2 pieces of cloth. It is worn around hips and below the navel. It is woven clothing, which is completely made of pure cotton. Mund is very simple and comfortable to be dressed in during summer. This is a white & creamy dress with colourful strips known as border or Kara. There is a special type of blouse which is worn with Mundu casing the whole navel.
Akrishta is a passionate blogger and enjoys writing on travel and tourism related articles from across the country.