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This is How Fashionable Women from Northeast India Wear their Mekhelas


We’ve grown up watching the women in our lives wearing the mekhela so effortlessly, either in the traditional form or with an uconventional twist. Usually seen as a traditional attire, mekhela has stood the test of time and is still an essential part of our lives today. Thanks to the young women from Northeast India, always looking for innovative ways to ramp up their wardrobe – and most likely, with borrowed inspiration from their mothers. Let’s take a look at how different women style their mekhelas.

Mizo ladies in their traditional mekhelas ‘Puan’ paired with trendy tops and accessories.


Mizo girls in their traditional ‘Puans’ | Photo courtesy @jojoismomo

Yakching looking lovely in her Naga silk mekhela paired with a white bell-sleeve top, perfect for a day-out.


Yakching in a traditional silk Naga Mekhela | Photo courtesy @yak_ching

Valentina in all her elegance, in a pastel toned Naga mekhela, and matching shawl.


Valentina Elika Zhimomi in a pastel colored Naga mekhela.

Her take on mekhelas : “Although elegant to look at, it requires a skill to be in it all day. It always needs readjusting (especially if it’s made of silk) and one cannot do that openly in public. This is why my mom sews an extra piece of cloth on the sides so that it’s easier to pull it together. That’s how I wear mine with ease. I love how comfortable it is while adding a touch of femininity.”

Arunachali girls of the Nyishi tribe flaunting some serious chic vibes in their traditional mekhela – ‘Gale’.


Beautiful girls from Arunachal Pradesh in their traditional ‘Gale’ | Photo courtesy @techipriya

How pretty does Ilikivi look in a pastel toned short mekhela with a simple sheer top and Naga head gear?!


Ilikivi in a short Naga mekhela | Photo courtesy @ilikivi

Keeping it elegantly feminine and fabulous in the Manipuri ‘Phanek’.


Manipuri women in their traditional mekhela ‘Phanek’ | Photo courtesy @reenaahanthem

What appears like a saree here, is actually a two piece drape called as the ‘Mekhela-Chador’ worn traditionally by the women of Assam. Pretty easy to drape and super elegant.


The elegant handmade silk from Assam ‘Muga’ worn as ‘Mekhela Chador’ | Photo @PoojaGhose



Curator and Co-founder of Instagram account : Nagasstreetstyle. Mother of two imps and part time radio jockey; constantly scouring the internet and magazines, to keep track of what's trending in the fashion world.

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  • Sumen Thingujam

    i don’t know about other states but meitei people wear the phanek in almost everyday day to day life. If you roam in imphal you will see every women and girls pulling it off.

    • Hello Sumen – that is indeed wonderful! Even in other states, young people are keeping traditional attires alive by giving their own spin and strutting them proudly- and they all look gorgeous! Inspiring isn’t it? And thanks for dropping by 🙂