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The Nehru Jacket Guide | What you didn’t know about Nehru Jacket

nehru jacket style guide

Nehru Jacket is gaining popularity at the moment, not only in India but also overseas and one reason for that could be our honourable Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi who is very fond of them. He wears it to nearly all of the functions and meetings.

The Nehru Jacket

nehru jacket men

It is a mixture of Indian and Chinese styles. It looks like the Mao suit which is worn in China and the name ‘Mao’ is because, the Chinese leader Mao Zedong popularised it by making appearances in it many times during his term.

The collar is in the mandarin style which originated in the Imperial China. The front is inspired by the Sherwani coats which are worn by aristocrats and by Indian grooms.

Where did the name ‘Nehru Jacket” come from?

We have to thank India’s first Prime Minister Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru for making this popular among the media and the masses initially. But the man himself, actually never wore the Nehru jacket himself. He used to wear either an Achkan jacket (lighter weight, unlined) or more typically a Sherwani Jacket (heavier weight, lined).

Jawaharlal Nehru Jacket

Though the Nehru Jacket is named after Jawaharlal Nehru, what he actually wore was a ‘bandh gale ka’ (closed neck coat) of which a more westernized version was popularised in the late 1940s.

Nehru Jacket and Mao Jacket - What’s the Difference

Chances are high that while looking for or searching about Nehru jackets online, you must have seen the term “Mao suit” come up many times.

mao suit

You can notice the boxy cut, the short collar and the absence of lapels. It is not necessary to wear a shirt or tie, although a white shirt can be worn beneath the coat with the shirt collar peeking out the neckline.

What distinguishes the Nehru Jacket from a normal suit jacket is the mandarin collar. It is a short and stand-up collar which doesn’t feature a lapel and is not turned upside down.

Nehru Jackets – Our answer to Tuxedo

Seeing the ethnicity and rising popularity, perhaps you should consider the Nehru jacket the next time you are ordering a bespoke tailored suit.

It is elegant and sexy. In 2012, it was listed among the top 10 global political statements. It is just a classic and it is not only us who are in awe of it, but the west is equally influenced by the trend.

The Nehru jacket Is the foundation of the Bandhgala and Jodhpuri suit & is accompanied always with the Nehru collar and occasionally with embroidery. Nowadays, Nehru Jacket is subject to interesting twists by labels and designers all over the world which contributes to its popularity.


Every material is fit to tailor a Nehru Jacket and this differs according to the geographical location. The khadi version is popular in the North region but it would be useless to the people living in the northern Himalaya region. People there can be seen wearing Nehru jackets made from cashmere or merino wool.

Though Khadi was made popular by Mahatma Gandhi in the struggle for independence, it is still worn by many people in India.

Though we cannot predict whether Nehru jackets will become a mainstay in the fashion world, but it is here to stay and amaze people for a long time.

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