Ladies, don't wear your underwear in public in India.


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#1 Mar 30th, 2005, 17:15
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#1
I always hear and read about female backpackers wearing sari petticoats in India thinking that they are normal ethnic type skirts. But I couldn't really imagine it or believe it till my brother told me that an Aussie female friend of his that travelled in India recently was extremely embarrassed when on a train journey an Indian lady leaned across to her and said, "Dear, you are wearing your underwear in public." This Aussie girl had on a sari petticoat she had bought, not realising it was Indian female underwear! She thought it was a Laura Ashley peasant style skirt.
#2 Mar 30th, 2005, 17:21
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#2
Don't really see anything wrong anyways!
#3 Mar 30th, 2005, 17:26
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#3
As I live in the West and have since I was a kid I can't understand the impact a sari skirt would have on Indians, though of course I know that you don't wear one in public as a skirt (or even around an Indian house!) as it's like wearing your slip in public, I think that would be the Western equivalent.
#4 Mar 30th, 2005, 17:39
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#4
Ladies in Kerala do wear the "petticoat" in public, don't they ? At least that's what the Malayalee films have us believe !
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#5 Mar 30th, 2005, 18:07
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#5
That's right, it's the equivalent of a slip. If she did wear it, people would have pro'ly given her a wide berth; stark raving mad, these foreigners, they'd have thought to themselves.

Shimla, it's called a munda and while it looks like an u'skirt, it's not.
#6 Mar 30th, 2005, 19:01
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#6
Not to worry about these things. We are a very forgiving people. Ignorance of culture is always fine, indifference is not.
#7 Apr 1st, 2005, 15:41
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#7
Yes, Digital Drifter, no lady in command of her senses in India wears a sari petticoat in public. What may look somewhat similar to a sari petticoat to a Westerner is obviously a regional costume skirt to the Indian eye. For example, the skirt sarong styles of some regions in the South and East and the Punjabi/North Western/Rajasthani/tribal etc ghagra choli, lengha choli etc styles. And the Western ethnic style skirt. But most Indians can tell a sari petticoat is a sari petticoat. However, it's true that Indians are tolerant that way usually. It's not like some country where you might be in danger for wearing underwear in public, usually all you will get is people thinking in their heads, "the girl is wearing underwear in public and she doesn't know because she's foreign, oh dear oh dear, hee hee hee".
#8 Apr 3rd, 2005, 01:53
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#8
it's an easy mistake to make! the first time i wore a sari to work i got some help putting it on from my landlady, and i just casually asked 'if it gets a bit too much i can just take this top bit off, can't i?'. her eyes widened, it was all rather funny
#9 Apr 3rd, 2005, 03:35
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#9

...but DO wear it when you should

At a Saree store in Delhi sometime back my sis and I were approached by an American female who wanted to know how to wear a saree. Sis explained in intricate detail how to drape it around your waist, how to make the pleats, take the pallu etc.

We later laughed on our way out when I pointed out that she forgot to mention the petticoat!
#10 Apr 3rd, 2005, 07:03
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#10
Quote:
Not to worry about these things. We are a very forgiving people. Ignorance of culture is always fine, indifference is not.
True. But do try to comply if you want to avoid undue attention.
#11 Apr 4th, 2005, 07:38
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#11
Quote:
Originally Posted by mala I have never seen a saree petticoat. What exactly is it?

( Would it be wrong to ask someone for a picture? )
I'm not sure if it would be right to show this in public.
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#12 Apr 4th, 2005, 07:48
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#12
If I'm corrent in my thinking, they're very popular here, I'm sure you've seen them. Often they're refered to as wrap skirts and are brightly coloured. Most girls just tie them around their waist and go, though there are a variety of ways to wear them. Most trendy import stores will have them
#13 Apr 4th, 2005, 07:48
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#13
Petticoat:
- Is a base garment for a saree,
- Is like a whole length skirt (but underwear), that uses a twine for a belt,
(Well belts come in less than half the size needed for Indian women...
you know how much urban Indian men and women like to excercise...
- Also acts as a belt for a saree but that is tucked over, not under.
(How yer gonna hang it there... suspenders...??)

For pics, see :Jayanthi's site

Oh well, its complicated to start using it... for beginners the salwar kameez is lot easier.



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#14 Apr 4th, 2005, 07:50
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#14
It's really just like a western slip....only really long... i have 3 of them and don't see how someone could wear them as a skirt...It looks like a slip.... I suppose there are those that are more adorned..I do have one that is many layered and heavy.....I mean VERY heavy.....Add a sari and it is hard to walk in! I love the way they feel.....so feminine...
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#15 Apr 4th, 2005, 10:56
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#15
Shimla, the traditional Kerala dress looks, to the casual glance, like a sari, but is actually a two-piece garment, the lower part like a Tamil man's vesti (mundu), the top part like a half-sari (Oh! there's another thing to explain!).

I think Malayalee women are prepared to expose more than Tamil woman.

Indiadreamn: no, a saree peticoat does not wrap, the mundu does. The peticoat you would step into and tie (it has a string/tape) around your waist.

If the sari it is worn with is opaque then it can be any old colour and will tend to be drab. If the sari is quite see-through, OTOH, then the material for the p-c will have been bought carefuly to match the sari, maybe using the same fabric for the blouse.

I think peticoats are always of plain design, but may have a little embroidery around the edge.

Half sari... this is worn by youngsters (traditionaly, I believe, before puberty, though now generaly worn by teenage girls). (well, it is very traditional, so 'generally worn' is probably a bit strong; I don't see many girls wearing them here). It is a skirt and blouse with a drape like the top part of a sari tucked into the skirt and taken over the shoulder. The skirt can be ornate and could not be confused with underwear!
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