How to dress for India and stay a cool fashionista
On my way to Australia this year I stopped off in India for a month. Like many other countries in Asia, India is humid, hot & sweaty. It's also conservative, so wearing skimpy tops & shorts isn't safe or appropriate - good news for us women of a certain age!
These are the outfits that have become my favourites for countries like India that require a certain amount of covering up whilst keeping you cool. And with the right accessories you can still travel light and look cool.
A big thank you to Charlotte, of A Beautiful Weirdo who styled & photographed me in Byron Bay. Hope you like.
Top tips & details of clothes below.
This black and white kaftan I bought for the beach is so old I can't even remember where I got it! But add the amazing turban, supplied by Spanish website Fullana, sunglasses (Trash, Byron Bay) & necklace I hope you'll agree that it's really brought the whole outfit alive and could be worn anywhere hot.
TOP TIP: DON'T pack many outfits because you can buy amazing clothes in India, very cheaply. But DO pack headscarves, turbans, sunnies & your favourite necklaces & bangles as they don't take up much room. I'm going with a half full suitcase next time
I actually found this kaftan in vintage shop A Brown Paper Vintage in Mullumbimby in Australia. It was $30 (£15) What a find! Another gorgeous turban from Gaia Soul, Byron Bay. The sunnies are also vintage & from my favourite shop in Byron Bay, Trash. I then took them to the eye doctor who put prescription lenses in!
TOP TIP: if you are a sunnies fan like me, shop vintage, they're cheaper than shop frames, take your prescription with you & get a local optician to put the lenses in. Really cheap in India and certainly cheaper than the UK in Australia.
My gorgeous, colourful kaftan found God knows where in Australia last year! I know it was cheap and it certainly kept me cool in hot, humid, sweaty Byron Bay. Perfect for India.
Another pair of vintage frames (I have a bit of a problem!) that I bought in New York at Fabulous Fanny's - yes you read right!
TOP TIP: pack or buy bigger scarves, they take up absolutely no room & can really dress up an outfit plus you can use them in so many other ways: covering your head, wearing as a makeshift turban, round your neck, over your shoulders or even round your waist!
Finally, shop locally. Things are really cheap in India & I found these navy blue, light cotton pants in a great store called Kalki in Pondicherry for like a tenner. The long white top was from a swap shop in the UK so cost me nothing & covered me up! (India doesn't mind a bit of midriff flesh on view BTW)
These pants also saw me through Australia, where I dressed them up with a gorgeous necklace I found in Pondicherry and my fav vintage shirt from Trash and, of course, the obligatory headscarf & sunnies! (My favourite black & white sunglasses were gifted to me years ago)
TOP TIPS: take really comfortable sandals. I love Fit Flops and have worn one pair to their grave travelling all over the world for the last 5 years! They're super comfy, look good & give me a bit of height. Another pair of light walking shoes like Converse and you're all set.
AND take casual handbags that can be packed flat in your suitcase. This one took me all over & was one of my best buys last summer from Elif Kose in Rottingdean, Brighton, UK. Perfect for travelling.
I hope you like my choices and that I have given you a few tips for travelling to hotter climes.
Happy shopping and travelling and if you have any questions, ask away!