From Romantic Chiffon To Tapori Chic, Every Bollywood Melody That Gifted Us An Iconic Monsoon Look

From Romantic Chiffon To Tapori Chic, Every Bollywood Melody That Gifted Us An Iconic Monsoon Look

Bollywood’s eternal prem for rains has always found a way out through utterly-butterly romantic songs. With lyrics that make your heart skip a beat and touch your soul in the hope to look out for a partner to share an umbrella with, we all sway to these little drops of rain. When I started my research for the many iconic melodies that had us dancing in the megha, I couldn’t stop but listen to them again and again for a better look at these beautiful Bollywood heroines, who were sugar, spice and everything nice in the tracks. Apart from the men, who did nothing but chant, “aaj rapat jaaye toh humein na uthaiyon,” these lovely ladies delivered both on the slippery roads and of course trendsetting styles. From chiffon sarees worn by Yashraj Films’ pretty divas to frill co-ord sets and sheer whites donned by Subhash Ghai’s mesmerising heroines, actresses played the main character with all their hearts. And as I look for my Prince Charming, or rather hope for him to look for me instead, I am tuning and taping to the tunes of these iconic baarish-favourite looks headlined by some of Bollywood’s most favourite women. Please join me with a cup full of chai and hot pakodas to soothe your soul. 

Nargis-Pyaar Hua Ikraar Hua Hai (1955)

Remember when Nargis and Raj Kapoor tapped to the tunes of “Pyaar Hua Ikraar Hua hai” in Shree 420? It was when I released neither mujhe pyaar hua hai nor ikraar, but I want ’em both. Apart from my very sad relationship with love, fuelled by this song, Nargis’ iconic printed saree, loosely tied braid, and a bold bindi, created by costume designer–C.G. Hanuman Khadilkar, shined in the monochrome frame. The song still takes the top seat in every monsoon favourite playlist.

Zeenat Aman-Bheegi Barsaat (1974)

Kishore Kumar And Lata Mangeshkar’s superheat track “Bheegi Bheegi Raaton Mein” from Ajanabee is a hard to miss track. Featuring Rajesh Khanna and Zeenat Aman, the 1974 song is still one of my favourites, all thanks to the actors’ sizzling chemistry and Zeenat Aman’s salmon pink, lace ensemble, teamed with two piggy tails and of course her persona. Honestly, it was a much-needed shift from the rainy-staple sarees, that women of the era were often seen dancing in, any and every romantic monsoon song.

Sridevi- Kate Nahin Kat Te (1987)

Only if I had a Mr India to myself, I’d take him straight out in the rains and dance to this song. Another iconic number from Sridevi and Anil Kapoor’s fail-proof chemistry was “Kate Nahin Kat Te” from their 1987 film–Mr India. Sridevi in the best of her chiffon sarees swayed in the year’s popular track and gifted her fans with the style trend of the season–a sexy saree.

Kajol- Mere Khwaabon Mein (1995)

It is through every character of Kajol in the late 90s that I felt the most connected with. And when it comes to dancing to my fake bathroom performances or waiting for my crush to respond to my messages, just like he did in my fake scenarios, Kajol played it all in this track from her 1995 hit film–Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge. Her solo performance on “Mere Khwaabon Mein Jo Aaye,” still has me itching to buy that pretty skirt-set, and dance mindlessly in the rain. PS–please usse kaho ki abh toh saamne toh aaye!

Madhuri Dixit- Koi Ladki Hai (1997)

While everything from Madhuri Dixit’s stunning kurta sets to Karisma Kapoor’s sexy athleisure from Dil To Pagal Hai, found a spot in style trends, this particular song made it to both wedding dance floors and Zumba classes. Madhuri Dixit’s sultry-stitched suit sets found a fan base in every girl who loves to romanticise the tiniest moments in her life. And one amongst her character’s closet favourites was this three-piece, sheer blue kurta set, with an interesting blouse attachment to it. And all thanks to designer Manish Malhotra for bringing this dreamy sartorial aesthetic to our screens.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan-Taal (1999)

Aishwarya Rai redefined our love for the swan-like colour white in Subhash Ghai’s 1999 film–Taal. Donning her innocence through her wardrobe, Aishwarya’s character delivered a raw, magical aura through loosely draped robes, sarong skirts and neutral tones, designed by Neeta Lulla. Her look in the film’s famous titular song–“Taal Se Taal Mila” had us all staring at Aishwarya, just like Akshaye Khanna in his blue raincoat.

Sonali Bendre-Jo Haal Dil Ka (1999)

Actress Sonali Bendre in a lovely, romantic red for Sarfrosh‘s “Jo Haal Dil Ka,” was truly magical. Credited to costume designer–Lovleen Bains, the look loaned its sartorial mood from old-school Bollywood’s favourite fabric–sheer chiffon. A spectacular red drap-skirt, accompanied by a pleated, boatneck blouse and a long-trailing dupatta on Sonali had us all obsessing over her. Am I right, or am I right?

Kareena Kapoor Khan-Bhage Re Man (2003)

I know these beautiful tracks are all love at first sight, but they truly are my favourite, until Kareena Kapoor arrives in her character Chameli in “Bhage Re Man.” Again c0-curated by the actress’ favourite designer friend–Manish Malhotra, alongside executive producer Rangita Nandy, Kareena’s Chameli is a character I will never forget. Rain again plays a prominent role between Chameli and Rahul Bose’s character Aman, as the two socially distinct characters bond. From Kareena’s gold-bordered, red saree, printed blouse to her embellished gold barrette, everything made her glimmering persona the shiniest in the frame.

Rani Mukerji-Hum Tum (2004)

Rani Mukerji and Saif Ali Khan have always been my OG favourite duo in films and Hum Tum stands in my favour. Singing along, to the titular track of the 2004 hit film–Hum Tum, the two had me watching them in awe, as they presented their spin on Bollywood’s idea of the rainy weather. From a cute maternity look, vintage-era prints, and Y2k favourite skirts to a dazzling sequin-bordered saree, Rani travelled through many tales of love in the song.

Also Read: We Made You The Ultimate Monsoon Playlist Of 25 Songs That’ll Speak To Your Soul

Esha Deol-Dilbara (2004)

I ain’t no fan of both Dhoom and Uday Chopra’s dancing prowess, but Esha Deol was a star in the 2004 film Dhoom’s popular melody–”Dilbara.” An ode to the 2000s’ blooming love for highlighter hues, clay rings, baby t-shirts and mini skirts, the ensemble was a package provided by Esha’s character Sheena in the film. It for me is the perfect fit for the tapori-chic aesthetic of the song and the roadside Romeo-Juliet mood. Again thanks to legend–Anaita Shroff Adajania for creating this gem.

Kajol-Dekho Na (2006)

Kajol returned with her love for the rainy weather in her 2006 film–Fanaa. A vision in green kurta and churidaar, we felt every droplet of the rain, just like Kajol’s character Zooni, in this track. Co-created by Manish Malhotra, and Mandira Shukla, the actress’ look was relatable, and thankfully far-far away from any forms of exaggeration, which is a given in romantic Bollywood tracks.

Kareena Kapoor Khan-Zoobi Doobi (2009)

Kareena Kapoor paid tribute to monsoon staple chiffon sarees when she danced to the tunes of her super hit film–3 Idiot‘s “Zoobi Doobi.” A representation of our dream dance numbers, Kareena wrapped a gorgeous orange saree with traces of glitter, as she stood out in the frame of this popular song. While her spectacular bridal entry on a yellow scooter is still a screen stealer for me, this orange saree, striking a contrast imagery with the polka-dotted umbrellas and a cute-sexy Aamir Khan in the frame is all that I am asking for.

Konkona Sen-Iktara (2009)

If you ask me about my favourite romantic scenes in a Bollywood film, it has to be the last soulful segment in the year 2009’s Wake Up Sid. Weaving our love for Bombay ki baarish, and the picturesque sea, with the beautiful Marine drive set in the heart of this beautiful melody–”Iktara,” Konkona’s no fuss, chikankari kurta, white hoop earrings, teamed with boot-cut denim jeans, channel every new girl in the city aesthetic for me. It is relatable and touches the right chords.

Katrina Kaif-Tip Tip Barsa Pani (2021)

While nothing can beat the OG Raveena Tandon look in the 1994 film Mohra, Katrina’s sartorial magic in this latest version of “Tip Tip Barsa Pani” from Sooryavanshi, is hard to ignore. Giving her very own spin on Bollywood’s favourite sarees, Katrina replaced romantic chiffons with a sparkling shimmer and of course, lighted up fire in pani. But please don’t come at me, because we still stan Raveena Tandon’s OG yellow number.

Video Credits: YouTube

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Jasveen Kaur Sawhney

Jasveen Kaur is a fashion writer, and pyjama hoarder, who loves watching interviews of all kinds, and checking her Pinterest mood board every hour!

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