Every Indian wedding reflects the cultural diversity of our country. Bridal jewellery is one of the most important parts of wedding trousseau in India. Bridal jewellery is most commonly a blend of cultural and spiritual essence. Every piece of bridal jewellery is accompanied by a rich history of craft, tales, and symbolism that holds a special place at the heart of every culture.
All eyes are on the bride and groom. Their charm, their grace, their love for culture, and unparalleled vision. Their effervescent spirit brings light to every room. Their brilliance shines through with utmost radiance. Every aspect of their personality is special. Our real brides are simply mesmerizing. And when we got the chance to bring their dream vision, dream wedding ensemble to life, we celebrated it in all its glory.
An elegant set of Bridal Jewellery always enhances one’s beauty, symbolic of wealth and status. While many indulge in glorifying a bride’s beauty as a part of their tradition and culture, gold is one of the most auspicious and precious gifts for a bride.
Indian bridal jewellery set and their intricate elements fascinate brides around the globe because of their rich and elegant appearance. Indian wedding jewellery set is an amalgamation of craftsmanship and workmanship over the decades that has established a special place in the world of jewellery-making.
The Essentials of Indian Bridal Jewellery
Indian bridal jewellery grabs everyone’s attention with the visual appeal of its intricate designs. However; the actual beauty of the jewelry pieces lies much deeper and is considered a blend of spiritual and cultural essences for the most auspicious and beautiful occasion of a woman’s life.
A bride of any country remains incomplete without the exquisite touch of some jewellery pieces which gives her entire get-up a majestic look. Bridal jewellery is of such great significance as it not only enhances the beauty of the bride’s attire but also takes her beauty to another level. The makeup of an Indian bride is considered to be incomplete without her solah shringar which consists of all the jewellery pieces considered essential to be adorned by a bride.
Here is a plethora of metals in which bridal jewellery pieces are available nowadays. It has given an easy way for people of all classes to be able to buy bridal jewellery and get the best of their looks on the day of their lives. Nowadays, fancy jewellery pieces made of colorful metals have gained more popularity than the jewels made by using any single metal like gold or silver. Some of the most popular metals used for making bridal jewellery include platinum, gold, and silver.
However, keeping in view the variety in demand and people’s love for colorful designs with sparking effects, techniques like Kundan, lac, jadau have also come into vogue and are widely used for making bridal jewellery pieces in all parts of India. If we keep only traditional Indian jewellery in mind, then it is mostly made of gold. Last but not least Antique jewellery is also a popular choice for millennial brides, primarily in the form of heirlooms. This bridal jewellery has a rustic aura and emotional old-world charm.
Here is a detailed description of some of the most essential pieces which form an integral part of Indian bridal jewellery without which the essence of the bridal jewellery remains incomplete:
This beautiful piece of jewellery has made its entry again into the Indian jewelry box with ladies’ increased love to flaunt a unique traditional style at their wedding. It is used for filling up the center parting of a woman’s hair which women in India generally keep for putting vermillion after marriage. It is one of the important signs of a woman who is married to the Hindu religion.
A necklace is certainly the most essential piece of bridal jewellery and it is considered auspicious and mandatory to be worn by every Indian bride. It adds a heavenly touch to the overall aura of the bride and gives exquisite glamour to her personality. It not only helps in covering the bare neck area but also gives a million-dollar touch to one’s personality. Nowadays, brides are moving away from wearing necklaces made only in the gold used traditionally. Instead, they prefer wearing necklaces made of gold, but with colorful and glittery touches of Kundan and diamond.
Earrings are like the best friends of a bridal necklace and both seem to complement each other. In fact, one without the other makes the look lacking something important. As earrings are required to be worn during the entire marriage ceremony, the piece should be selected carefully keeping one’s comfort in mind. If your bridal wear is in a pastel tone, you can opt for stone studded and diamond earrings and for a darker tone bridal wear, you can select gold jewelry pieces.
This beautiful jewellery piece was introduced by the Mughals in the Indian culture and gradually became a symbol of marital blessedness. Nath has gained more attention these days and the traditional patterns are more in vogue. It is obviously the most beautiful piece of Indian jewellery. However, it is tough to say if it would suit every bride or not. One can get it made by choosing colors and metals matching the bridal dress. The size should also be decided to keep in view one’s overall personality.
Bangles, the word itself seems to produce the sweet tinkling sound which is loved to be adorned by every Indian bride. On the auspicious day of the wedding, a bride wears golden bangles though in some traditions colorful glass bangles are also a must to wear during the wedding ceremony. A variety of designs are available in bangles and one can get it made in only gold or a gold bangle with diamond studs on it.
Some brides also opt for diamond bangles as it goes wonderfully with light-colored bridal wear. Bangles with Kundan work are also in vogue these days and are loved to be adorned by the brides. The use of Kundan gives an intricate design to the bangles which are mainly done by an amalgamation of gold and uncut diamonds.
This piece of head jewellery was bought in India by the Mughals during their period of rule. The jewellery meaning in Hindi of paasa is jhumar. Traditionally, only Muslim brides used to wear it but nowadays a lot of brides of different religions are wearing paasa due to its classic and royal look.
These are integral components of the wedding jewelry set. A bride is supposed to wear her engagement ring along with other jewelry pieces of the bridal set. However, a bride can also wear more finger rings as per her choice. Nowadays, brides prefer wearing colorful stone studded rings matching the color of the bridal outfit. The tradition of wearing gold rings seems to have gone out of fashion and brides mostly prefer using studded finger rings for daily wear after marriage as well.
An anklet or payal and toe rings are considered to be important components of Indian bridal jewellery in different cultures of India. It is also scientifically connected to keeping the reproductive organs in a woman’s body in good health. Both are considered to be very auspicious and must be worn by Indian brides during the marriage ceremony and even after marriage. It is one of the important signs of a married woman
Waistbands had almost vanished, but now it has come back in vogue and forms an essential part of Indian bridal jewellery. From heavy and broad waistbands to slimmer ones, brides have started opting for many varieties depending on their body structure, outfit, and preference. Brides prefer to wear it as it not only covers the bare torso area while enhancing its beauty but also adds a heavenly aura to the bride’s exquisite look.
Significance of jewellery in bridal culture
From rings with gemstones believed to bring luck, to the nose-ring signifying feminine power and elegance, jewellery that is a part of the bride’s trousseau is denoted with unique significance.
- The mangalsutra is believed to bring long life to the husband, hence establishing its importance, as a must-have piece of jewellery for a bride.
- Another bridal jewellery piece is the maangtika, which is a large pendant worn in the center of the forehead, attached by a thin chain in the hair. This piece is said to activate the ajna chakra on the forehead, symbolizing the union of the female and the male elements- the union where all differences are overcome.
- The nath or nose ring is also an important part of wedding jewellery, especially in the north of India. Again due to the acupuncture point located where the nose is pierced, this piece has special symbolic meaning for brides.
- In the south of India brides often wear precious jeweled belts or waistbands, known as vaddanams for their wedding. Mostly made in gold and embellished with precious stones, the waistband can be a stiff belt or chain worn to highlight the waistline of the bridal silhouette.
- Toe rings are another piece of jewellery meant exclusively for brides and married women, as it is believed that the pressure point they activate, aid in child conception.
Evolution of bridal jewellery over the years
Over the years, bridal jewellery in India has undergone major evolution, while retaining its traditional heritage and craftsmanship. Wedding jewellery worn by Indian brides has had progressive influences like practicality and popular culture, shaping its new avatar. It is unique in its identity because its roots remain in cultural values, while also being an important element of mainstream lifestyle.
In India, the custom of bridal jewellery is an ancient one with ornamental and symbolic uses. A bride is always adorned with precious jewellery on her wedding day and this symbolizes power, a cultured status, and the financial standing of her family. The symbolism of bridal jewellery has evolved with time but continued to be a vital part of a bride’s trousseau as it was in the olden days. In some parts of the country, it also signified traditional values as the bride also wore an heirloom piece handed down through generations.
The history of popular types of wedding jewellery
In India, there are many popular kinds of bridal jewellery like temple jewellery, enamel meenakari gold jewellery, Kundan, and Polki to name a few. Each of these jewellery types is a specialty from a certain region and has its own history of becoming, wedding jewellery worthy
Temple jewellery for example was crafted solely with the purpose of adorning the idols in temples. As time passed the temple dancers would perform dance renditions of devotional stories and so started to wear imitations of this jewellery style, copied for the idols. The dance form of Bharatnatyam grew popular and with it temple jewellery became an accessible style, thus making its way into the world of trousseau jewellery
The Mughals brought the Jadau technique to India but, the artisans of Rajasthan and Gujarat perfected the skill with distinctive touches, to make it their own. The process of Jadau-making involves beating or heating pure gold until it is pliable, creating a frame and motif, filling lac in the hollow frame, and setting precious stones in it. Jadau is a technique used in making Kundan and Polki jewellery. This intricate technique produces stunning jewellery that brides aspire to own. The Rajputana dynasties which ruled India till the 19th century also produced some of the most intricate designs over the years, thanks to their numerous skilled craftsmen. A Rajput bride would wear some of the most mesmerizing gold and Kundan jewellery on her wedding day. Once meant for royalty only, this kind of jewellery is now a part of mainstream weddings.
The art of meenakari or enamel work was introduced by Raja Mansingh of Amer when he brought down artisans from Lahore to create beautiful jewellery creations for his personal use. It is a technique of fusing powdered glass in intricate patterns into a precious metal like gold. Meenakari jewellery has now found popularity with modern Indian brides for its colorful intricate beauty. Also notable were Mughal influences on the jewellery motifs of flora and fauna, which were made popular by the dynasty during the time of their rule.
Design influences from the west
India was one of the first countries to mine diamonds on the banks of River Godavari near Hyderabad and was a pioneer of what was then considered a new-age jewel. It was only natural for royals to indulge in the fascinating jewel. Patronage from the maharajas and the nawabs escalated the stature of diamonds to another level. Royal families had their ornate ornaments customized at leading jewellery houses across Europe, experimenting with designs, motifs, and materials. This western aesthetic and different craftsmanship brought a fresh and new design aesthetic to jewellery. As the royals were the style icons of their time, their jewellery designs started influencing bridal jewellery in a big way. The use of uncut diamonds, colored gemstones like rubies and diamonds, and sapphires and western motifs were now seen in bridal jewellery.
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