Celeb-approved Retro style saree Looks

Celeb-approved Retro style saree looks that you need to channel right now!

Fashion is like a merry go round. You spin around as much as you want; eventually, you come back to where you started. The retro style is also making a smashing comeback and yet again proving that old is gold! Bollywood celebrities have gone back in time, mould it and repackaged the retro saree style with a fresh appeal.

Bharatsthali’s roundup of the retro look of this year comprises timeless weaves with modern fabrics and contemporary styling! If you are looking for some inspiration for the wedding season or missed some of the trends, scroll down to have a closer look!

The indisputable OG retro queen of the style who inspires the retro look even today is Mumtaz! Her 'aajkal tere mere pyarke charche' is still in charcha for the edgy and playful style. And why not? The Oscar award winner Bhanu Athaiya took an orange saree and just transformed the very life of it. A coy six-yard cloth, which was the embodiment of a modest heroine, was suddenly sensual, exposing the midriff, showing the curves with the pallu just there - hanging on to the shoulder for its dear life!

Besides this immortalised Mumtaz drape, the big floral prints, polka dots, big frills and puffy shoulderscontinue to live on. The Bollywood heroines flaunt the retro style saree like a pro and playing with the style in their own way.

What is a retro style?

Okay, we have been going on and on about retro style but what is it? The fashion that was prevalent duringthe period of the 50s to 90s is referred to as retro. The polkas, plaids, bell bottoms, the shararas, the palazzo, angrakhas, sherwani, checks, abstract geometric pattern, winged eyeliners, hairbands and ruffles – are the signature of a retro style.

The terms vintage and retro are used interchangeably but they are as different as night and day. Vintage refers to the authentic piece of clothing or products during the 20s to 80s. Vintage is old and original.

The retro, however, is updated and polished version of the old style. They aren’t original but an “inspired” look with a contemporary twist. The ‘retro’ comes from the Latin word, ‘retrospectus,’ which means to look backwards. The retro trend is essentially a comeback and a redux trend.

Mumtaz - Retro Style Saree Drape

Now, when the technicalities are out of the way, let us focus on some mainstream retro saree style now! Shall we? And what could be better than starting with Mumtaz drape? The similar sensual midriff-exposing, the no-frill body-hugging draping style and still as iconic.

Mumtaz retro style saree
Mumtaz saree looks in Retro Style

While Mumtaz took the fashion world by storm with her saree, it was Sharmila Tagore rocking the world with her knotty, retro style, frilly, butterfly knot bandeau blouses. And do we need to tell you who all are living on the edge and enjoying these frilly affairs? Kriti Sanon rocks a Banarasi saree with a bandeau bralette that has a butterfly knot at the back. Touted as a traditional sari, the Banarasi gets a contemporary makeover!

The beauty queen turned actress, Manushi Chhillar dons a silk organza six-yarder with a frilly knot saree blouse. The saree flaunts hand-painted flamingo flowers and the blouse gives the traditional drape a modern twist.


Reliving the retro-glam look of yesteryears’ actresses is Sonam Kapoor. A pastel sari paired with side bangs, cascading waves and nude makeup- she does a complete 360 from here modern-day fashionista look in retro style saree appearance. And does she look ethereal? Totes!


Have you ever seen a better crossover than this? The hand gloves, the gold-ivory kanjivaram saree and corset blouse! She is the fashion queen that slays and shows no mercy.


Here Kangana can be seen flaunting the retro hairdo of Marilyn Monroe and the chocker pearl necklace ala Sadhana or Vaijyanti Mala style.



Saree Inspirations
Sadhna in Saree Looks

Note the fuss-free frills, the floral pattern and the hairdo of Kangana’s drape. Can it get any retro-er than this?

Kangana Ranaut in Retro Style Saree


Kangana Ranaut makes ethereal beauty of Lucknowi ‘koti’ and floral blouse come alive. Do you know where you saw this last time? In Meena Kumari’s Pakeejah! The gold zari motifs on an otherwise solid colour saree and the gota lace along the length of the saree sets look exceptional.


Shilpa in Organza Retro Saree Looks

Love the floral patterns that give you easy-breezy feel in summers? You know who to thank! The retro floral prints are now bouncing back and winning votes of many Bollywood stars. Besides, you can see many stars flaunting organza sarees with hand-painted flowers.



Saira Banu in Retro Saree

Deepika Rocks in Retro Saree Looks

Trust Deepika Padukone to rock ruffles and frills like no other. When it comes to the sarees, she is the queen of fashion! Taking the classic weave for a spin, she experiments with the drape only to bring the sunshine to the universe of fashion!


The de-glam and neutral makeup with a tone-on-tone blouse and a cotton saree! With a sleek chignon and statement jhumkas, she takes the spunky retro and adds her drama to it. Just a tip of the hat to the classy retro trend in her own dramatic way!


In between promotional events and wedding celebrations, Deepika takes another saree and exudes old-world appeal. The contrasting zari border along the sari adds depth to the drape. The same colour blouse is an out of the rule book look yet works in a charmingly unexpected way! The jadau kundan-pearl jewellery blew up the look!


The pared-down aesthetic of the saree, statement pearl earrings and neutral makeup give this retro-style an effortlessfeel! The red roses in the bun and centrally-parted hair give the saree a punctuated look.The intricate tone-mute embroidery on the saree is the work of a brilliant craftsmanship. All in all, a beautiful retro trend in a millennial world looking at us.


And you thought off-shoulder tops and saree blouses have become trendy just now! Here’s the ethereal Madhubala looking sensual than ever, with a flower brooch, winged eyeliner and red lipstick. Can’t think of anything better. Nope.



Bollywood Saree Love
Old Celebrity Looks Sarees

The sleeveless saree blouses are a trend of Retro era as well! Today, the celebrities flaunt the stylish sleeveless blouse or bralette saree blouse with traditional Kanjivaram or raw silk sarees to bring a dash of modern to their overall ensemble.

Take Alia Bhatt for example. She wears a sleeveless blouse with her bandhani saree, playing peekaboo with the traditional drape and championing the style!



Old Celebrity Looks
Old Celebrity Looks

Remember Dimple Kapadia in Bobby or Zeenat Aman in ‘Chura lia hai tumne’? Now, check this out! Shilpa Shetty in front-tie blouse and polka dot saree! The two top retro trends come together and make a smashing comeback! What do you think of this look?


When it comes to ethnic wear fashion, Shilpa Shetty boasts of an envious wardrobe. She flaunts timeless sarees meant for traditional brides and the drapes that are perfect for women who want to experiment and open to new ideas!

Coming back to her style, she flaunts this ready-to-wear ruffled saree draped in the Mumtaz style. She completes her look with a statement necklace, wavy hair swept aside.


The ruffled pallu and edges seem to be this sultry siren’s favourite yet again! Don’t forget to check out the retro-styleemerald green blouse that lends a sexy silhouette and make a smooth transition from formal to casual wear when you want!


Inspiration; https://blog.rajwadi.com/2017/06/03/eternal-retro-fashion/

Trends come and go but retro is here to stay! Because sometimes it is better to take a few steps back and retrospect!