Indian Veil Draping Instructions

Updated April 17, 2017

In India, some women choose to wear loose veils. They are made out of cotton or georgette and are often heavily embellished. Though this is not a strict religious or cultural requirement, many women in the northern region of India choose to wear veils, or dupattas, to religious services. Many rural women wear them out of respect for their elders. Aside from everyday use, veils add an element of festivity to such events as weddings. Many women also use them as fashion accessories; they can be draped in a number of ways.

Drape the veil over your head, keeping the two ends even at your sides. Push the top edge of the veil back to the crown of your head to reveal your hairline and show off your tikka hair ornament if you are wearing one. The tikka hair ornament is a jewel that dangles from the part in your hair.

Drape the veil over the head and shoulders for a more modest look. Place the veil on top of your head with the edge near your hairline. Keep the two ends uneven with about a 1 1/2-foot difference between the two lengths. Wrap the longer side over the front of your shoulders and allow the end to dangle behind you. If the wrap feels insecure, pin it in place where the two sides of the veil meet near your face.

Wear the veil like a scarf, which is a trend that has come into fashion through the Bollywood scene and is favoured by many young women. Drape the veil across the front of the neck and allow it to fall down the back or wrap it around your neck so that the sides hang at the front and back of your body. Alternatively, drape one side of the scarf over a shoulder and rest the other end across your opposite forearm. This style, which emerged at the turn of the century, is reminiscent of the sari and is particularly appropriate for longer dupattas.


If the veil feels too loose when you have it on, secure it to your hair using a hair clip at each side.

Things You'll Need

  • Hairpin
  • Tikka hair ornament
  • Pin
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About the Author

Andrea Hamilton has enjoyed being a writer since 1996. She has been published as a poet in "Fine Lines Magazine." Hamilton holds a Bachelor of Arts in literature from Iowa State University and is pursuing a Master of Arts in creative writing from London South Bank University.