How to DIY a Kurta Lehenga for 1/3rd the price #WeddingGuestStyleHacks

by Namrata Nautiyal
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diy kurta lehenga

I have been thinking about this post for awhile now. My sis in law got married earlier this month, and I was obsessing over what to wear to her million prewedding functions without burning a hole in my pocket. The answer – I got 4 out of my 6 or 7 outfits stitched by the local tailor and my mum. Problem=solved.

Luckily for us budget hunters, its been a good wedding season. What with crops tops, kurta lehengas etc in fashion, one can really play with the outfit styles.  Take for example the crop top. It can be used as a crop top lehenga, or with crop top pants and a long jacket thrown over it, the skirt of the crop top can be used with a long or short kurti and so on. Its all about the permutation and combinations.

No matter which store you shop in for readymade outfits, things are so expensive when it comes to wedding wear. The worst part is the more sober the look, the more expensive it gets. So I am going to share some of the hacks that helped me get through the wedding season, and hopefully will help some of you to get ready for the upcoming summer wedding season.


DIY Kurta Lehenga Tricks

#1 Focus on color rather than print

Do you like pastels or pop? Choose accordingly and work towards a look that you love. For instance, whites and ivory shade go well with any and every pastel shade from pinks, gold to brighter shades like mint. But if that’s not to your taste, you can pick a solid color which is doing well that season and accentuate it with laces and latkans for jazzing it.

Nowadays, there are so many shops where you can pick fabrics like mirror work look, or gota patti fabric. But those are expensive. So instead, what you can do is go for some bright colors like the yellow or red one above, and that color on its own throws its charm. You really don’t have to do much but just add a few accessories to it.

wedding guest outfit styles

Source – Joy Mitra

If you have a heavy kurta already, try which combination color goes well with it, and just make a plain colored lehenga skirt with it. You can then use the same dupatta or get a new one, and viola you have a new wedding guest look ready !


#2 Have that one contrasting factor

It could be your dupatta, it could be your skirt or the top. But one contrast color sometimes works better than the monotone look. Also, since we are getting this outfit stitched its always better to go for fabrics, designs and colors which are easily available.

Make sure you look at the 3 elements (skirt, top, dupatta fabric) in advance before making any purchases. The dupatta ideally should be your last element to be picked. You can check on Pinterest or check out any designer looks to see what color combinations work best.


#3 Choose the right fabric for your lehenga skirt

This is the one that probably costs the most, or wait…if you’re picking a heavy dupatta that might be costlier. Fabrics costs anything like 250 and upwards a meter. For a lehenga skirt, you need at least a 4-5 meters cloth piece given the siza of the panna. Panna is the width of the fabric and you can ask the shop if they are giving you the ‘big panna’ fabric.

If you want poof in your skirt, banarasi and brocade or raw silk are good ‘budget’ options. They look super rich and because of the heaviness and stiffness of the fabric, you don’t need a lot to make the skirt. With a banarasi or brocade/raw silk…you should go for a half circle lehenga skirt. No can-can needed whatsoever.

Brocade silk cost 150 and above a meter whereas raw silk comes in various price range starting from 100 bucks all the way to 600 bucks a meter. Banarasi is expensive. Chanderi on the other hand, looks really good especially for summers. They don’t cost that much and still look quite rich.

If you go for a flowy fabric like chiffon, georgette then those cost quite high, and you need a lot of fabric to make a flowy lehenga skirt. If you’re choosing this type of fabric, you need to go for a full circle lehenga, which will again cost you higher.

Alternatively, dig through your mom’s closet to see an old saree that she is fed up of, and use that to make a full gher lehenga skirt. You will save a ton of money + the saree pallu can be used in the border and in the dupatta as well.


#4 Don’t got for complicated designs – keep it simple

In the end it all depends on your tailors skills. It has happened to me, so I wouldn’t want you making the same mistake. Pinterest outfit designs may look simple, and you may think the tailor can pull it off, but if he is not able to…you’ll end up with a sad outfit with money gone down the drain.

Don’t try out over complicated designs like asymmetric kurtas, or heavy sequins fabric with cut piece borders etc etc. The plan may backfire, unless you obviously go and give it in some boutique.


Best place to buy the fabrics from

Lajpat Nagar in Delhi has everything available when it comes to fabrics. Form sequins, to chanderi, gota patti everything is available. There is a dupatta store right opposite where the metro work is going on, you can get any shade dyed to match your outfit colors.

They also have stunning heavy work dupattas costing in thousands and they look every bit designer worthy. You just have to have a bit of creativity to do your customization to the outfit.



  • Fabric Cost: Kurta Material + Skirt fabric + dupatta
  • Tailoring: Kurta (not more than 600) + another 1000 -1500 for the skirt

The minute you search for a decent lehenga look, the outfit costs anywhere upwards 5k guaranteed. But if you get yourself a kurta lehenga stitched, you can actually save up some big bucks, by reusing the kurta like normal salwar kurta set, or use the skirt with a crop top and dupatta and so on.



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