Dungarpur is the scenic state of hillocks situated calmly in the remote regions of southern Rajasthan. The chiefs or the rulers of Dungarpur’s Sisodia Dynasty were titled as ‘Maharawal’. This was founded by Rawal Samant Singh who was the first heir to the Mewar ruler Karan Singh. With the royal history of Dungarpur comes the culture of Mewar in the attires of Maharawals of Dungarpur.
The attires worn by the royal Maharawal citizens of Dungarpur were designed by the highly skilled weavers. Having the background of Rajputana, the head gear was an important part of the men’s attire. The way the head gear or the turban was tied, the silk and fabric used to make this turban, the length of the cloth and the handwork used in the headgear distinguished the royal Maharawal men from the general public.
The men folk of the Sisodia dynasty were closely connected with the Mughal dynasty and hence this too exhibited in their sense of clothing styles. Bright colors were chosen and the color of the turban was always coordinated with the color of the dress. The material for the main outfit was usually ordered from the lanes of Benaras and Gujarat for high-quality silk and cotton.
The women of Dungarpur wore a dupatta that was 10 feet long and 5 feet wide. This was carried off elegantly by tucking one corner with a richly crafted flared skirt and the other end was placed over the head in order to cover it. Most of the women covered their heads and faces completely, as part of their Rajput culture.
The jewelry worn by the women was nothing short of exquisite and was designed using special cut diamonds and precious stones.
Evolution Over Years
For as long as the royal clan of Dungarpur existed, The royal family always dressed in the traditional styles and the women were expected to don the heavy jewelry even while at home.
However, over a period of time, monarchy became diluted with a more modernized approach and there came a time in 1971, when the monarchical system was completely banned by the Indira Gandhi Government. This opened up more financial opportunities for the royal clan of Dungarpur. Women opted for lighter pieces of jewelry, and did away with the heavier ornaments. The customary pallu on the head was replaced with a more modernized approach, where the pallu was simply draped across the shoulder. Likewise, the royal men also opted for Kurtas or robes that were less ornate and more comfortable to wear.
The western world has always been taken in by the traditional royal culture of India. Dungarpur is no exception to this rule. The culture and the dresses worn by the Maharawals of Dungarpur have earned big reputation across the world. International fashion designers have started to imbibe this style in many acclaimed fashion shows.
Interesting Facts and Comparisons
– Dungarpur is home to many fairs and cultural festivals throughout the year. This is much higher than many of the other cultural districts in India.
– Dungarpur has one of the most amazing forts in the world
– Close proximity to ancient and world famous temples