Elise Øverland In India

Elise Øverland is a frequent visitor to India, where she’s picked up no small number of friends (and a few inspirations for her collections, too). The Norway-born designer was recently on the subcontinent for the wedding of Shivraj Singh, the Prince of Jodhpur—along with Sting, Trudie Styler, Sarah Ferguson, and more.

Having spent so much time in India over the years, I always have a string of friends’ weddings in November. (Whereas the traditional wedding month in the west is June, Indians prefer November—basically, you do nothing but go to weddings, and it seems like the henna stays on from one to the next. I’ve even heard that Vogue India’s November issue is dedicated to wedding saris. Maybe it’s the weather: no monsoons in November, and it’s not too hot.) Even with all the competition out there, there was something very magical about the marriage of Shivraj Singh, the Prince of Jodhpur, to Gayatri Kumari—and not just the starry guest list. As a general rule, the dress code is pastel saris for day—absolutely no black for any occasion, which must seem unbearable to New Yorkers—and as many bangles as you can manage. (For men, the traditional Rajput outfits: a long coat called an achkan, fitted pants, colorful wrapped turbans called safas, sharp swords, and cummerbunds.) Hundreds of guests came to the lawn of Rambagh Palace in Jaipur to give their blessing, and spent the next day at the continuing events in Jodhpur, which raised the question: Who’s taking whose plane?

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