Guitar strumming dudes and high-heeled damselsare quite common sights in Aizawl, Dimapur and Shillong. Street fashion is a big thing in the North East region and you will find ample evidence of it in even the smallest of towns of Nagaland, Mizoram or any other state of the region. If music runs in their blood, football in their adrenaline, then fashion is surely the signature oomph factor of most North Eastern Indians. If the Septuagenarian Lou Majaw can rock the denim hot pants and sleeveless t-shirt look at his age, then just think how fashionable the teens of the region can be. The teenagers here are the coolest fashion icons as they can rightly predict fashion trends yet have the guts to break fashion norms and can mix culture with latest trends effortlessly. So what makes the teens of North East look so much cooler?
The tussle with so-called ‘mainland India’ has made numerous youths of the region feel alienated from India. Most teens here do not identify themselves with Bollywood films, Hindi music or Indian fashion but are rather drawn towards western culture, especially fashion. This influence is easily seen in the clothes teens of North East wear. Jeans, tees and jackets are like staple clothes for the youth of the region, while sneakers their comfort shoes.
Korean and Japanese Influence
It is not simply Western culture that influences fashion and style of the teens here but increasingly K-Pop (from South Korea) and Anime (from Japan) have become very popular which is easily reflected in the clothes the teens were. Cosplay events are becoming annual events in cities like Aizawl, Kohima and Shillong while K-Pop and K-dramas have a hard-core fan bases here. Moreover, clothing merchants from the region frequently travel to Hong Kong, Seoul and Guangzhou to bring second-hand or factory-reject garments that are sold at throwaway prices in the region. The teens who have less disposable cash in hand buy from these sellers thus looking million dollar bucks by simply spending a few hundred rupees.
Advantage of Mongoloid Features
Most tribes (though not all) of the North Eastern region have Mongoloid features which means they usually have a lean figure. Since their body structure is similar to other Asians, clothes that come from Hong Kong, Bangkok etc. easily fit the teens here. That’s another reason why you will find most teens in cool clothes, all the time.
Ability to Mix and Match
Fashion is as much about following trends as it is about defining trends. In order to stand out of the crowd, you need to have the penchant of mixing and matching and this is what the teens of North East are good at. Even though they are hardly out of school, they have an inane sense of what can look good on them. Moreover they know how to wear traditional wear and give it a modern twist. That’s the reason why a Mizo girl wearing Puan (traditional wraparound skirt) looks like a runway model because she knows how to club the traditional weave with high heels and trendiest tops. Similarly leather jackets and shawls, cowboy hats and traditional wraps are common sights here.
Related: Hip fashion Styles from North East
Teenage Boys are Equally Fashionable
We often associate fashion with girls but visit the North East to learn how boys can also rock a fashionable look. The young boys you will find walking the streets of these small towns invariably have grace in their gait and fashion in their mind. Just as the girls know if boyfriend jeans are in fashion or not, the boys too know whether skinny jeans are for them or not.