With its glorious history of Rajputs endowed with magnificent forts and palaces, invincible architecture, and popular designs of Rajasthani jewellery, Rajasthan is known as the land of royalty and kingdoms. Rajasthani jewelry, the oldest form of jewelry is indeed spectacular in all its glory. Originating from Rajasthan, Rajputana gold jewelry is one of the most exquisite styles of jewelry in India. The Rajputana style of jewelry is a reflection of its royal heritage and rich culture and remains an integral part of Rajasthani culture even today. There is a strong connection between religion and the popular designs of Rajasthani jewellery.
“Every piece of Jewellery tells a Story”
Rajasthani jewelry is indeed spectacular in all its glory. The nostalgia and charm of it are truly unbeatable. The Rajasthan jewelry set is synonymous with the words like imperial and regal. Mostly, we can find the Rajasthani bride dressed in a gota patti ghagra-choli. Rajasthani bride on her wedding day looks nothing less than a royal queen cladded in magnificent jewel pieces. They are so royal and rich in appeal, that you won’t be able to take your eyes off them. Here’s everything you need to know about the different types of traditional jewelry styles from Rajasthan.
Popular Designs of Rajasthani Jewellery
Rajasthani women also wear a neckpiece that is long up to the navel known as rani haar. The rani and maharani haar variants are the longest neck pieces for a Rajasthani jewelry set and provide it with a clear, majestic feel. The Rani haar necklace extends from the shoulders to the navel, with a large ornament in the middle. Since it covers the most area on a bride, these pieces can be either delicate, jadau jewelry, or heavy pieces from Polki and Kundan collections. If put in the order of neckwear, the set begins with a Timaniya or an Aad, moves to a Kanthi, and then a Rani Haar or a Maharani haar – depending on the size of the last piece.
Rakhdi/Borla is the traditional Rajasthani head jewelry (Maang tikka). Being spherical or bell-like in shape, Borla, a traditional Rajasthani jewelry design is different from the usual maang tikas. Borla is one of the most popular designs of Rajasthani jewellery. It is a maang tikka with a spherical pendant hanging in the center of the head. The traditional Borla comes in a spherical design attached to a gold chain. Borla can be made with a variety of metals like gold, silver, brass, etc., and comes in a variety of stone-studded forms like Kundan, Meena, and pearls. The combination of sheesh-fool and Borla forms a Matha Patti, worn by brides in Rajasthan.
The maang tikka adorned by Rajthani brides is called ‘Rakhdi’ and ‘Borla’. Rakhdi is a signature jewel piece that is also a style statement for modern brides. The tikka usually ends in a huge bell-shaped or spherical piece embellished with precious stones. It is further juxtaposed with ‘Sheesh Phool’ which is a chain of small Rakhdis that forms a forehead band. The Khancha is a band worn on the upper forehead and has the Rakhdi attached at its center.
Nath or Nathni is one of the most popular jewelry styles in Rajasthan. A circular, gold ring is usually worn on the left nostril and joined to the left ear with a gold or pearl chain. From tiny circular patterns to abstract heavy-worked Kundan, it comes in different forms and is worn by most north Indian brides at wedding/ festive occasions.
Surliya/Kaanbali and Jhaale:
Rich in antique and royal look, Rajasthani jewelry earrings have gained quite the name amongst popular designs of jewellery in Rajasthan. Rajasthani gold jhumkas or earrings are also quite popular in northern India, known as Surliya /Kaanbali or Jhaale. Immaculately designed with intricate Kundan or Meenakari work, Rajasthani earrings give a rich royal look, mixed with a hint of tradition and fashion.
Aad or Kanthi Necklace:
Kanthi or Aad necklace is one of the most famous and gorgeous styles of Rajasthani jewelry. Also known by the name the Rajputana or Rajasthani necklace, Aad is a square /rectangular choker and is usually gifted to the bride by the bridegroom’s family. Worn by the brides, Kanthi is a traditional choker made of Gold and is usually adorned with Kundan and other precious stones like polka. Considered to be must-have jewelry in Rajasthan, Aad oomph the bride’s look and adds oodles of royal charm to her overall visual appeal. Kanthi usually comes with an adjustable thread so that it can fit anyone. In addition to Aad, Brides wear Rani Haar (Queen’s necklace) as well which is long up to the navel. A traditional rectangular or square-shaped choker, Aad is also known as the Rajputana necklace. A very popular design of Rajputi ornament for the neck, Timaniya, also known as Aad in the Rajasthani language. This neckpiece covers the whole neckline area.
Bajubandh is the upper armlet. An armlet worn by Rajasthani brides, bajubandh (also known as Angada) is designed with meenakari work. Originally worn by men, bajubandh later became popular among women. Crocodiles and snakes were the most common designs for it in the Rajputana era, but now they are available in modern styles also. It signifies marital ecstasy and therefore is worn by Marwari and Rajput brides. The intricate stonework engraved on Gold makes it one of the most popular designs of Rajasthani jewellery.
A set of two bangles worn by Rajasthani women, Bangadi bangles have a thick red lining and a small round gold protrusion covering the bangles. These bangles are only worn by married Rajput Rajasthani women. The combination of gold and red color paired with intricate stone studded work is to die for. For hands, a very special set of two bangles worn by the Rajasthani women, Bangadi has a thick lining and small gold protrusions. Traditionally, Bangadi used to be made in gold and plastic but now many variations are available.
In most of the Rajasthani tribes, women wear ivory bangles. An ideal set of ivory bangles includes 17 bangles worn on the upper arm and nine which are worn on the lower arm, a total of 52 on both arms. These married women are not allowed to remove the bangles, not even during sleep. In Rajasthan’s tradition, Ivory bangles have a magical effect that protects the woman against evil and bad and eases birth pains.
Hathphool is the hand bracelet and is popular by a number of names like haath kamal, hand chain, and hath panja. It beautifies the back of the wrist and the palm. Available in various designs and patterns, haath-phools are made of gold, Kundan, minakari, and sometimes jadau work. They come in either one ring design or the five finger rings style. In the latter, the fiver finger rings are attached to the multiple strings of gold chains connecting together and merging into a flower which has another chain up to the bracelet. Also known as panchangala, meaning ’jewel for fingers’, the hathphool consists of a gold ring with a huge flower piece (made of jadau or meenakari) that beautifies the back of the palm and connects to a bracelet that gracefully envelops the wrist.
A belly chain/waist chain is called Tagdi or Kardhani in Rajasthan. Usually made of gold, Polki work, or Kundan, it is mostly adorned by Rajasthani brides. Yet another very popular designs of Rajasthani jewellery set, Kamarbandh is a waist chain. It is known as Kardhani or Tagdi in Rajasthan and is usually crafted of gold Polki or Kundan.
These are traditional Rajasthani jhumkas. This Rajasthani jewelry design consists of heavy intricate work embellished with gems and stones (both precious and semi-precious).
When we talk about a Rajasthani jewelry set, it cannot be considered complete without toe rings. Bichuwas are toe rings, made of either Gold or Silver. Quite a popular design in jewellery in Rajasthan, Bichuwas is beautifully adorned by Rajasthani women on a daily basis. Nowadays, women wear artificial Bichuwas. It is gifted to a bride by her parents and is worn on the second toe. Some also wear them in multiple toe fingers, as shown below. Usually, a traditional Rajasthani toe ring is made with silver or with gold plating in a floral design, worn only by married ladies. They come in a variety, some are also attached to Payal. It also looks amazing in Indian outfits.
To know more about the variety in popular designs of Rajasthani jewellery for men, keep reading our blog and share it with your family & friends. Read more about the Indian heritage and traditional jewelry of different states and tastes, only here.