Nehru Jacket: At home anywhere in the World

The Nehru jacket has gone a long way. It had its ups and downs.

The jacket was originally called “Bandh Gale Ka Coat” or “Closed neck Coat”. Its first appearance was in the 1940s, but it became more prominent when the first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, did some public appearance using the style. From then on the hip-length with a mandarin collar jacket style was called ‘Nehru’ jacket.

Before it become popular globally, the so-called jacket was just a simple shirt over a kurta and is under any style of coat. It was exclusively for men. Presently, the Nehru jacket can already be worn by women; the jacket became shorter and more refined or tailored; but the main design – fitted style with mandarin collar – remained the same.

The fame of the Nehru jacket went sky high when four British good-looking guys wore their Nehru jacket in a concert. The Beatles first appeared using the jacket in 1965 at the Shea stadium. Yes, the gals can’t seem to get enough of them; and yes the paparazzi kept clicking. But it was the fashion experts who noticed that something is different. Different and nice! The group once again used the style in another concert, thus making the sixties the golden years of the Nehru jacket.

From Hollywood to Bollywood!

After the Beatles, other big artists followed the trend. Some well-known international artists like Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Johnny Carson, Sean Connery as well as fictional character Dr. Evil (Mike Myers) in the movie Austin Powers were seen using the Nehru jacket.

Bollywood stars like Aamir Khan, Ranbir Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt and Saif Ali Khan also showed their support. Meanwhile, noticing that the jacket has influenced both Indian and international stars, fashion guru Anita Dongre called the Nehru jacket a ‘classic’.

It’s Back!

Like any other fad, the popularity of the Nehru jacket died down after a few years. People wearing the jacket are now called ‘old-fashioned’ or ‘frozen in time’. But in the fashion world the out dated style can turn to a gigantic hit in a manner of minutes!

Nehru jacket style returned in the nineties when it started showing up in fashion magazines. In fact, well-known fashion designer Ermenegildo Zegna came up with his ‘guru suit’ in 2002. The suit showed the comeback of the Nehru jacket. Even political leaders showed their renewed interest with the style. In 2001, US Bill Clinton wore a suit with the Nehru jacket style in a public gathering. And, in 2011 Chanel presented their Paris –Bombay collection with the Nehru jacket style as the star of the show.

Change in the Nehru jacket style was inevitable. Fabric materials went from simple linen to cotton, velvet, tussar silk and brocades. Intense patterns and designs as well as sophisticated embroidery were also included. The younger generation also changed their color preference. From traditional colors like black or grey, the Nehru jacket can now be seen in pastel colors like chrome yellow and sky blue.   Meanwhile, Nehru jackets for women have shorter sleeves, bolder patterns and the length may be waist length or knee length.

The enigmatic Indian fashion became more appealing in time. Just last year at the New York fashion week, Marchesa showed an Indian inspired Spring/Summer collection.

So while it’s still around, let us all enjoy the monomania over the Nehru jacket from India. Hey you! Got your Nehru jacket on???!

The Nehru Jacket and the Pop Culture: Catch the Full History Here From the Beatles to James Bond!

The Nehru jacket originated from the name of famous Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru. He was in charge from 1947 to 1964 and his trademark was the hip length tailored coat with the very classy mandarin collar coat. The jacket was based on the modified design of the South Asian sherwani or achkan. The iconic difference between the achkan and Nehru jacket is the length and the collar. Achkan falls below the knees whereas Nehru hardly reaches the hips and the unique collar shape resembles the jacket from other clothing. The pop culture has casted a big picture for the promotion of the great Nehru Jacket. The revolution of this iconic wearable has long history of the past that relates famous individuals. Let’s get the hint of the how the pop culture collaborated with the fashionable clothing.

The apparel of the famous jacket was innovated in the mid of 1940 and the stylish wearable was named as “Band Gale Ka Coat (Hindi)” which translates as “Closed Neck Coat.” It appeared in the market in a modified design ad updated fabrics from mid 1960 and the promotion of the clothing got popular with the Prime Ministers iconic appearance with the jacket. The wearable was the named as Nehru Jacket from 1960 and lately in 1970 the trend of wearing the jacket got huge market as foreign cultures welcomed the fashion tend warmly.

The legendary band Beatles wore the Nehru jacket in concert held on 1965 at Shea Stadium. The band again featured the clothing in June 1st 1967 as the lead vocal and guitarist Jack Bruce wore the Nehru Jacket. The rare concert footage of Cream held in Des Sports Paris hold the crispy memories of the golden days.

Famous artist Johnny Carson also promoted the Nehru Jacket. During his performance in the mid-1970, he wore the Nehru jacket to perform in a show. Rumors pledged that he used to get commission for wearing the Nehru Jacket. Before that, he wore the Nehru Jacket intentionally in 1966, which was manufactured by the famous men’s apparel brand Hart Schaffner, and Marx.

The one and only bond series also signifies the fashion trend of long jackets. Bond villain Dr. No, wore the Nehru jacket in the film titled as the same name. Famous Indian actor Kamal Khan coated with the same garment in several color in the Octopussy film. The olden days of the jacket has been tremendously mesmerized in the bond series movie Tomorrow Never Dies. The leading character Elliot Carver casted with the black Nehru Jacket throughout the whole movie. The Nehru fashion lately extended in the Spectre chieftain show as the actor Ernst Stavro Bofeld featured the Nehru jacket.

Image Credits - http://si.wsj.net

Image Credits – http://si.wsj.net

It should be mentioned that the popularity of the Nehru jacket even spread from the action packed Bond series to the comedy series also. The villain Dr. Evil from the Austin Powers series also dressed with the Nehru jacket. Though, the origin indicates the political individual of Prime Minister of India but it has been widely popular as the villains costume in movies. However, the trend has been still contained by the cultural activities in some regions. The wedding ceremony of Asian culture still lists the Nehru jacket as one of the favorite wearing.