Tips to Look Good in a Sari

By Shae Hazelton

A saree is a traditional Indian garment consisting of a single length of cotton that drapes around the body to accentuate the curvy female figure. Sarees seem complicated at first, but they are quite easy to wear once you get the hang of tying them. With so many styles of saree out there, it's easy to find one that looks good on you.

A saree can be worn to a variety of occasions.

Complimentary Undergarments

The saree isn't the only part of the outfit; it would be a little awkward if it was. Before you don the saree, you need to choose a shirt that cuts off just below the breast line and an ankle-length skirt. While you completely cover the skirt with the saree, the right shoulder of the undershirt is visible. You should match the color of your skirt to that of your saree so it isn't visible. Your shirt can be any color that will complement the color of your saree. For example, a black undershirt would go nicely with a gold saree.

Proper Wrapping

The best way to look confident and beautiful in your saree is to wrap it properly. An improperly wrapped saree will look more like a collapsed tent than an elegantly draping garment that hints at your figure. There are many different ways to wrap your saree, but the most common is the "Nivi style." Create seven pleats in one corner of your saree. Tuck the pleated end of the saree into your skirt just left of your navel. Wrap the rest of the saree around your waist, tucking the edge of it into your skirt. Take the extra fabric of the saree that you didn't tuck into your skirt and throw it over your shoulder so it drapes around your front and hangs down your back. Pull the edge of the fabric down to cover your left arm from the shoulder to the wrist.


If you don a saree with tennis shoes and a baseball cap, you're going to look a little uncoordinated. Usually, women wearing a saree will wear sandals; place a bindi on their forehead (the small jewel that rests just above the nose); and accessorize with necklaces, bracelets and handbags. Match your jewelry, handbag and bindi to your saree. For example, if you wear a simple cotton saree without any heavy embroidering, wear simple wooden jewelry accessories that match the toned-down garment.


Donning the proper clothing and accessories is only part of the battle when it comes to looking good in a saree. The saree is a lose garment that provide you with a wide range of movement, but it can still be difficult to navigate in one at first. The ankle-length fabric and long, draping sleeve can interfere with your gestures and stride. Practice navigating around your house for a while before you travel anywhere wearing the saree. Grow accustomed to the long sleeve on the left hand so you don't catch it on doors or knock over items.