January 8, 2015

Reader Query: Finding the right Shela

Needless to say a "Shela / Shawl" is really important for maharashtrian brides as it is seen in most bridal pictures. Dont believe me?? Check wedding Outfit 1 & Outfit 2 yourself! There isnt one pic without the shela. This explains why I got multiple requests for a post on this topic. Shela in simple words is a stole/dupatta for a maharashtrian bride literally used to tie-the-knot. 

Things to remember: 
  • Consider buying a transparent shela (intead of opaque): You want to show off the beautiful designer blouse right? I bought an opaque shela which honestly didn't look good on my final outfit. It was too late to change as I realised this on my wedding day. Let me warn you, transparent shelas look too simple/light for a bride. But try to visualise it with the whole outfit. 
  • Avoid gold shades: Gold shelas are easily available, cheap and the most common myth about gold shelas - it goes with any saree colour. I find gold shelas too tacky. Even the see thru ones! As it is most Maharashtrian brides wear a yellow saree and enough gold jewellery. A gold shela on top of it will then seamlessly merge the bride with the wedding decoration. 
  • Play with colours: Red, Maroon, Hot pink, Leaf Green will look fresh! I should have bought a red transparent shela matching the delicate resham work on my yellow saree. Instead I tried to match the shela with the heavy purple border and unfortunately the blouse was of the same colour. 
  • Keep it simple if your saree is heavy. Although, heavy dupattas instantly turn a simple saree into bridal. I have seen brides not wanting to spend too much on the yellow saree as it can barely be used again (you absolutely make sense girl! I have only seen my yellow saree once in 2 years). If you go for a heavy bridal dupatta, it can be reused post wedding on a plain dress.
  • Give a thought on the cloth material: It is difficult to tie a knot with some synthetic materials. A loose knot is the last thing you want right! 

How to drape a Shela: 
  • Prioritise on what should be the focus on Eg: blouse, pallu, saree draping style, shela, etc. Since I didnt like my Shela that much, I neatly folded it and placed it on one shoulder (just for the sake of it). Also it is easily removable then. This style is not recommended for brides wearing 9 yard saree (most styles). 
  • My SIL wore a contrast see thru shela and she opened it up on both her shoulders. This draping style is a strict no-no for opaque/thick Shawls & non skinny brides (unless you want the shela to be the focus). Recommended for a 9 yard saree. 
  • If your dupatta has a Jardosi, kundan, etc border, you may want to pleat the border up and put it on one shoulder. The other end can neatly be tucked in at the waist. You can enjoy being a handsfree bride!
  • I have rarely seen a maharashtrian bride covering her head. In case you want to go for it, choose a light weight flowy dupatta. A contrast border at dupatta's back will look regal. 

Marathi Weddings tip: I feel you should only wear your Shela during the pheras when it is really required. Just do away with it for the rest of the times if possible. One less responsibility is a lot of relief on your wedding day. Only dont push your family too hard leading to a controversial topic. You will definitely have bigger issues like the guest list to fight about. ;P 

I bought my shela for less than 800 bucks from "Gore and Company" - Shanipar Chowk, Pune.


  1. Nice post, y the long break? Hope all is well

  2. Hey Aditi​, Thanks for a new post after so long!!!

    U know...even I have planned that I'll use a bright color sheer dupatta with heavy work on it as a shela on the yellow wedding saree as it can be used post wedding on a plain white dress. If we get a typical "Shawl" as Shela then that would be of no use after the wedding day
    Glad to know that there is a bit resemblance in our thoughts n ideas ;-);-)
    Btw I had noticed the oti holder in u r hand in the wedding pics. Can u suggest from where in Mumbai I can get that?? and does the small lil thing is able to hold all the ingredients of the oti??

    1. Thank you Pranali! The Oti holder comes in a standard size which is sufficient. To be on a safer side make sure you get the small fruits

  3. Aditi..you look fab...thanks a lot for this post.. :-)

  4. Hi .. I am getting married in april and your blog is just what i was looking for. Thanks a lot for sharing all that valuable information. Keep it up. Great blog.

  5. Hi .. I am getting married in april and your blog is just what i was looking for. Thanks a lot for sharing all that valuable information. Keep it up. Great blog.

  6. Heya ..happy to c ur new post...hope u doing good...keep writing

  7. I love Marati Wedding and this blog is giving good informative.Wedding Designer saree Is superb to see.Thank you for sharing it..Wholesale Sarees

  8. Great post! And very good explanation of Indian traditional Wholesale sarees. Thanks for sharing.

  9. I love Marati Wedding and this blog is giving good informative.

  10. Thanks for sharing the info. I located the information very useful.

  11. nice looks Fashion Style, Gorgeous Look,

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