In South Asia, the Sri Lankan groom’s wedding attire holds a remarkable charm, unlike any other. With its distinctive plush hat and regal appearance, the groom’s outfit stands out as a symbol of elegance and tradition.
The Origins of the Kandyan Look
Originating from the Kandyan royalty of the 19th century, the Kandyan look is fit for kings and reserved for special occasions. The hat and jacket, made of plush velvet fabric, showcase intricate gold and silver embroidery. The draped cloth, known as the mul anduma, is crafted from opulent fabric, adding to the ensemble’s grandeur.
The Four Components of the Sri Lankan Groom’s Attire
The Sri Lankan groom’s outfit encompasses four essential elements: the hat, jacket, mul anduma, and shoes. The hat, resembling a crown, features a golden tree-like ornament that rises from the center. Jackets, adorned with lacework and sequins, come in stunning variations of burgundy, red, blue, silver, and gold.
A Tradition for All Ages
The Nilame costume, as it is also called, is not exclusive to weddings. Men and boys of all ages wear this attire to celebrate festivals, special events, and parties. The groomsmen of the wedding party often dress in matching Nilame costumes, adding to the overall splendor of the occasion.
The Symbolic Embroidery
The jacket’s design includes prominent shoulders that mirror the puffy sleeves of the bride’s osariya. The back of the jacket showcases an embroidered symbol, often depicting a tiger, a Hasna swan, a peacock, or a Gurula, a two-headed bird. These symbols hold cultural significance and add an extra touch of magnificence to the attire.
The Significance of Mul Anduma
The mul anduma, a long white cloth with a frill, is wrapped around the groom’s waist and tied just above the belly. Donning this garment is a meticulous process, taking almost an hour to complete. It holds immense importance and serves as a commemoration of significant milestones.
To create the mul anduma, the groom begins by wearing frilled white trousers. A vibrant red cloth is then draped around the waist, followed by the kavaniya, a cream-colored fabric piece that can span up to 100 yards in length. The kavaniya is pleated and layered, resembling a blossoming flower bud. The fabric layers are secured with a wide belt, adorned with a carved gurula, creating a beautiful three-fold draping of white, red, and cream.
The Final Touches
The shoes of the groom’s attire are specially designed with an upward-turning toe. Completing the ensemble, Sri Lankan grooms accessorize with a striking signet ring and a necklace, adding a touch of charm to their regal appearance.
As we conclude our guide, the only remaining aspect to explore is the delectable Sri Lankan wedding food. Stay tuned for more captivating photos and details.