vintage sequin blouse

6

One of the ways in which Devdas (1936) differs from versions that came later is in scenes that capture the ambience and camaderie of the kotha in which Chandramukhi works. There is a brief dance sequence but this is not performed by Chandramukhi and there is a good deal of emphasis on the accompanists. 

Like subsequent versions, Devdas (1936) draws on the fashionable styles of its time. Chandramukhi wears a sari in all her scenes and these are usually spangled or with bold geometric designs.   Chandelier earrings as seen here were very popular in the 1930s. For the short dance sequence (mistakenly labeled as Chandramukhi’s dance) you can see that the costume is a ghagra and a diaphanous dupatta. This is quite different from courtesan representations, both in costume and dance, in subsequent films like the 1955 version*. 

For the men, the costume of the singer is colourful and rakish (pic 3) while men who seem to be long time customers are in an achkan and dhoti-kurta. 

*This fitted Anarkali version is the standard courtesan dress in many films and probably dates from the late 19th century.