One of the many things I like about SL is the opportunity it provides to explore, albeit virtually and to a necessarily limited extent, aspects of cultures other than one’s own. Like me, you probably have several favorite places to visit in SL, and I’m willing to bet that at least some of them don’t look like your RL neighborhood. Â Perhaps you like Paris in springtime, Barcelona in the fall, or the dark side of the Moon. Â A recent series of more-or-less random TP hops brought me to a fairly impressive replica of the Taj Mahal, and I was inspired to outfit my avatar appropriately for a return visit.
Fortunately, SL also provides opportunities for a wide variety of ethnic attire. Â Some designers specialize in clothing designs of a specific culture, while others supplement their lines of contemporary clothing with the occasional specialty item. Â Such is the case with Zaara Kohime’s eponymous Zaara, where I found Zaara’s recently released Adyan Kurtas. Â From Wikipedia, which as always is my friend:
A kurta is a traditional item of clothing worn in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Â It is a loose shirt falling either just above or somewhere below the knees of the wearer, and is worn by both men and women. Â They were traditionally worn with loose-fitting paijama (kurta-paijama), loose-fitting salwars , tight-fitting churidars , or wrapped-around dhotis ; but are now also worn with jeans. Â Kurtas are worn both as casual everyday wear and as formal dress.
Zaara’s kurtas are clean and simple in design, honoring the original intent of the traditionally simple cut, which was to leave no wasted fabric. Â Elegantly sculpted cuffs and bottom hem give shape to the jacket- and shirt-layer base garment. Â Although contemporary kurtas often have a Mandarin collar, these have no collar in the traditional style. Â The look is cool, comfortable and casual, well in keeping with the kurta’s run of popularity in hippie fashion of the Sixties and Seventies. Â Everything old is new again.
Although kurtas (while simple in construction) can be elaborately decorative, with embroidery and horn or other unusual buttons, Zaara’s are free of these extra touches. In my opinion, this allows the finely detailed artwork of the fabric texture and graceful curves of the cuffs and bottom hem to shine all the more. Â Look closely to see the carefully colored and shaded edging of the collar, cuffs and hem–it’s subtle but beautiful. Â Although plain solid-color styles are also available, the fabric of mine is printed with a repeating motif of the “Aum” (or “Om”) character, which represents the mystical or sacred syllable of the Indian religions. Â The Aum emphasizes the singularity of God in the face of the multiplicity of existence. Â In essence, Aum is the signifier of the ultimate truth that all is one.
“This one syllable [Aum] is the highest. Â Whosoever knows this one syllable obtains all that he desires. Â (The Katha Upanishad, 1.2.16)
L$190 each at Zaara (Zaara 157, 132, 26); some pack pricing options are also available. Â I love this beautiful Saffron color, but there are two other prints and six solid colors to choose from. Â These are for women as well as men, but they’re not generically unisex; each includes prim pieces sculpted for both male and female avatars.