How to Style a Shrug

Our Kantha Sari Shrugs have been one of our best-selling products since we started making them in 2012. And I think I know why: they're a unique and incredibly versatile way to wear our beautiful textiles; the style lends itself to layering and the drape is flattering on a range of body shapes and sizes. We often get asked how to style them, so we wrote this guide to give you some ideas.

Kat at the Pushkar Camel Fair in India wears a Kantha Sari Shrug.


Kate from Tokyo Urban Baby, in one of our Kantha Sari Shrugs.

What is a shrug?

A shrug is essentially a large shawl, with arm holes that allow it to be worn like a very loose vest. It's a cape without a hood. It's a free-size sleeveless jacket. It's a hands-free scarf. It's a silk cardigan. We started making shrugs from our Kantha Sari Shawls and they were such a hit that we now make shrugs from a variety of gorgeous textiles, including shawls from Laos, Cambodia and Thailand.

A Khmer Ikat Silk Shrug.

Suvarna from What My Sister Wore models our Kantha Sari Shrug

How can they be worn?

Our Kantha Sari Shrugs are reversible, which is a good thing as often one side of the fabric is very different from the other. Wear them loose; wear them wrapped around your body and tied with a brooch; wear them fastened with a belt. Wear them inside out. Wear them outside in. You can even wear them upside down to lengthen or shorten the back.

Wear them over jeans; over a dress; over a sari; over a shirt or sweater. Wear them in balmy weather; wear them in hot weather, draped over your shoulders to protect you from the sun; wear them in cold weather over a sweater and tight around your neck.

Twist the fabric and you can even wear our shrugs as a scarf around your neck.

The shrugs are free-size, so most women can wear them, though they will be loose on a petite frame and tight on the back and around the arms for an XL size woman.

We do custom size orders for our customers who would like a smaller or larger sized shrug. Just email us for details!

Love our shrugs?

Shop our wide range here.

Shruti wears a Kantha Sari Shrug, Minneapolis.

Style Guide

Bhavna, co-founder of our online partner, Tadpole Store, was so smitten with the beauty of these silk shrugs that she created the following looks with our Kantha Sari Shrugs. Text and images below from The Tadpole Store.

1. Jacket – Add a belt around the waist and you are ready with a stylish look that works great for semi-formal occasions. The belt lends structure to this free flowing garment and the pleats that gather on the sides give you a flattering shape.

2. Asymmetrical Dress – Add an oriental touch to this shrug made of the quintessential Indian garment. Take the corners across your waist and add a stylish waist belt to wear the shrug as an asymmetrical dress. The belt at the waist takes care of the muffin-tops we all try to hide and adds length to your silhouette. You can also wear it as a long tunic.

3. Asymmetrical top with a Rose – Silk as a fabric has glamour woven into it. The kantha work on these shrugs adds class and texture to it. Now make it stylish by turning it into a top with a rose. Take the edge across your neck and tie it through either of the armholes. Spread the knot to make it look like a rose. And voila! You now have a blooming shrug!

4. Ying-Yang Triangular Dress – The best way to flaunt the two bright sides of your shrug is to wear it with the collar upturned. Spread the edges away from you and add a brooch in the centre. Zen-like state is now one step closer!

5. Cross-back Top – You do not need scissors to shorten your shrug up. Just take the ends, cross them up in front of you and tie then up behind your neck. You now have sexy silk top like nobody else.

6. Tie-roll Tunic – Is it a tie? Is it a scarf? No! Its a Super-Shrug! Create the illusion that you are wearing a scarf around your neck like a long tie with this style. Just roll the ends outwards away from you, bring the two sides together and add a stylish brooch to hold it together in the center.

7. Open Sandwich Style – Last but definitely not least, this style opens up the other side that you’ve been hiding! Take the edges and tie it at the back and bring the front two creases together with a stylish brooch.


#shrug #kantha #textiles #India #style

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Based in Delhi & working with women makers, NGOs & master artisans across the width & breadth of this extraordinary land, House of Wandering Silk reimagines India's most beautiful textile traditions.

Proudly crafting one of a kind, zero waste & small batch textiles, clothing & accessories founded on our values of authenticity, respect & beauty, since 2011.

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