By: Nirmal Yadav, Saroj S. Jeet Singh & Nisha Sangwan


A study was conducted to identify the problems faced by working women in the preferred dresses at work place. It was found that Salwar-Kameez was the most preferred dress at workplace followed by Top-Trouser. The study revealed that in the existing styles of dresses, the major problems faced are no provision of keeping the belongings (kameez-salwar, top), free hang of dupatta (kameez), tying string tightly(salwar),short length (top) and available in limited varieties of fabrics(trouser).


Clothing is dressed to be symbolic of working women success in life and social position. Down through the ages women have taken pride in their personal appearance and have sought the beautification of self through ornamentation. There was a time in India when only typical Indian dresses were worn.

The selection of clothing was limited to special occasion like marriage and religious function. In the present society, a woman leads a more active life.

She moves with man in all walks of life and now there is hardly any field, which can be called man's exclusive domain. Now there is countless profession in which Indian women have entered, some of the professions are uniform based while some are non-uniform based like private corporate, advertising agency, interior design firm, boutiques and colleges etc. At these places the employees have to dress in a manner that will inspire their confidence (Kefgan & Specht, 1979).

According to Syber & Roach (1962) clothing behavior is related to social mobility if one failed to dress up as expected the occupational mobility is affected adversely. As the working woman meets lot of people, she must have greater variety of clothes and accessories.

The working women require clothes that are suitable, practical in nature, comfortable and business like in appearance. Clothes not only help to achieve the success she desires but also gives her poise, confidence and also self identification.

So, here an attempt, was made to identify the problems faced by working women in the existing clothing practices at work place.


For conducting the present study, four fashion oriented cities were selected purposively. A proportionate number of respondents i.e. 25 were selected from each city, which constituted a total of 100 respondents. Working women were selected from different professions, which included lecturer, executive managers, doctors and businesswomen.

Results and Discussion

This section includes information regarding the existing preferred dress patterns and the problems faced by the working women at work place in existing preferred dresses that make them feel uncomfortable and less active.


Existing dress pattern of respondents:


Data pertaining to existing dress pattern of respondents at work place has been depicted in Table 1. It is elucidated that most preferred dress at work place was salwar-kameez scoring 2.28 ranked 1st followed by top-trousers and sari scoring 1.94 and 1.48 got the 2nd and 3rd rank respectively.


Skirt-top was the least preferred garment obtained the 4th rank scoring 1.08 at work place.

Problems faced in the preferred dresses:

The data incorporated in Table 2 & Fig.1 depicted the problems faced in the preferred dresses by the respondents.

Data elucidated that majority of the respondents reported that in the existing style i.e. in kameez (94%) salwar (78%) and top (83%) the major problem faced is that there is 'no provision of keeping the belongings' especially mobile, hanky, cash, pen etc that is required in short mobility within in working area.


Other problems faced in descending order were the 'free hang of dupatta' in kameez (88%) acts as hindrance in fast life, followed by 'undesirable styles' (84%) and 'undesirable neckline' (73%). In salwar, other problems faced by the majority of the respondents were 'trying string tightly' (81 %) around the waist followed by 'no provision of keeping belongings' (78%) and 'improper fitting at waist' (62%).


In ready made tops the major problem reported by 89% respondents was 'short length (above/up to hip)' followed by no provision of keeping belongings' (83%).

The ready made trousers are 'available in limited varieties of fabrics' was the major problem reported by the respondents (53%).

The data thus elucidated that major problems faced by the respondents was that there is 'no provision of keeping belongings'.



The study was conducted to identify the problems faced by working women in the existing preferred dresses at work place that make them feel uncomfortable and less active.


It was concluded that major problems faced by the respondents were 'no provision of keeping belongings, free hang of dupatta, tying of string, short length and available in limited varieties of fabric'.


As observed in the study people are buying what so ever available in the market regarding ready-made garments. There is no option and the consumers are not satisfied as they need working, comfortable, fit and active clothing that only comes through proper style, proper size, and proper fit, proper selection of fabric.


Hence, dresses should be designed in a way to overcome the existing problems of the working women so that they feel comfortable and active at workplace.


  1. Kefgan, M. and Specht, P.T. (1979) Individuality in clothing selection and personal appearance. The Macmillian Company, New York, pp18, 448-450.

  1. Syber, R. and Roach, M. E. (1962) Clothing and human behavior. J. of Home Economics. 54(3): 184-186

  1. Vijaylakshmi, S. (1970) Consumer Preference in Clothing Selection. Indian J. of Home Science. 4: 119-121

About the Authors:

Nirmal Yadav, Saroj S. Jeet Singh and Nisha Sangwan are associated with Dept. of Clothing and Textile, College of Home Science, CCSHAU, Hisar

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