India and jewelry, jewelry and Indian women - the terms are linked inherently. At the time of wedding as well as numerous other occasions, a woman is gifted jewelry by her parents and relatives. Although the gift is meant to give her security in contingency, ornamentation is an obvious purpose. All the cities across the length and width of India have shops of jewelers - some traditional and some modern jewelers, catering to the need of all kinds. Not that the affluent class people wear ornaments, there are low cost jewelry items in ample, which cater the demand of low income group as well.
India houses various kinds of jewelry arts, ranging from Meenakari and
Kundan to stone and bead work. The craft of cutting and polishing
precious and semi-precious stones and giving them glamorous face is
something artistic. Emeralds, rubies, garnets, amethysts, corals,
sapphires, and turquoises are among the stones which are used for the
enhancement of gold and silver jewelry. Gold jewelry is the most popular
among South Indian women. In southern part of India, gold is considered
auspicious and a status symbol. Talking about the art on gold jewelry,
Kundan is something that comes into our mind.
It is a Mughal-inspired art of setting precious stones like diamonds,
rubies, and emeralds in gold and silver jewelry. In Meenakari, enameling
is done to protect gold and floral pattern coloured in red, blue and
green attracts the attention. Silver jewelry is not far behind in
popularity, particularly because of its affordability, making it popular
among low income group people. Jhumka, hansli, chokar, nath and
bracelets made of silver are quite popular among women in India. In
short, the range of jewelry in India is wide as well as varied. Be it
gold, silver of diamond, you will find everything in the country.
The jewelry which is not in mainstream production and of which the mode
of production is no longer popular is known by the name of 'Antique
Jewelry.' This kind of jewelry has dull and rough look, combined with an
old world-world charm, and this serves as the major USP of such jewelry.
Bead art in India is five thousand year old and dates back to the time
of Indus Valley Civilization. People of that civilization used to make
beads out of gold, silver, copper, clay, ivory and even wood. The
excavated carried out there came out with finished and unfinished beads
from the site.
India has great tradition of wedding jewelry. Made of superior metals
and excellent quality, jewelry accentuates the beauty of bride in
multiples. Though these days silver and platinum jewelry is gaining
popularity, gold jewelry still holds the most popularity among Indians.
Custom jewelry is personalized jewelry, which a customer gets her made
on her interest and fancy. This happens particularly in cases where
readymade jewelry does not match the taste of person. Custom jewelry
gives total freedom to customer about the specifics.
Fashion jewelry is also called costume jewelry, mainly for the reason
that it is not made of precious metals and stones, rather lighter and
cheaper material are used. Fashion jewelry is trend-conscious and keeps
on changing as per changing needs.
Filigree work is done on silver and involves lots of precision and
technicality, added with great amount of patience and an eye for minute
details. Historically, filigree work was quite popular in countries like
Egypt, Italy, and Spain. India's history of filigree work goes back to
Gold is a metal that lures many. It gives the security against any
financial crisis, because of its easy liquidity, and is also used by
women for adorning themselves. Traditionally, gold has been considered
auspicious among Hindus and is regarded to be symbolic of Lakshmi, the
Goddess of Wealth.
Talking about jewelry manufacturing in India is as good as talking
about handmade jewelry in India. A major chunk of jewelry in the country
is made by independent craftsmen. Traditionally also, a significant part
of jewelry manufacturing has been handmade jewelry.
Jewelry that is made from the tusk of an elephant is called ivory
jewelry. Importance of ivory jewelry can be guessed from the fact that
in Gujarat, the bride receives an ivory bangle from her family just
before marriage as jewelry. During marriage ceremony wearing of ivory
bangles is must for bride.
Jadau Jewelry forms one of the major examples of high skilled
craftsmanship that was brought into India by Mughals. Historically
speaking, the tradition of Jadau work has been in practice in the states
of Rajasthan and Gujarat since the Mughal era. Jadau jewellery is also
called engraved jewelry.
During Mughal period, the art of kundan work reached Rajasthan from
Delhi. Later on, craftsmen from the different part of the country
migrated to the place and made Rajasthan a hub of Kundankari. Rulers and
feudal lords gave patronage to the art and it developed into perfection.
Lac jewelry, also known as lacquer jewelry, originated in Rajasthan and
has gained considerable popularity in India today. Lac jewelry is
available in versatile designs, which add to its beauty. Among the
various items in lac jewelry, the bangles need a special mention.
In Meenakari jewelry, precious stones are set and then enameled with
gold. Historically speaking, the art was introduced to Rajasthan
artisans by Raja Mansingh of Amer. He invited Lahore-based skilled
artisans to his kingdom, and their intermingling with the locals
craftsmen resulted in an amalgam.
In Navratna jewelry, nine auspicious stones are used in a single
ornament. The belief behind this is that the nine stones together ensure
well being of the person who wears it. In India, Navratna jewelry has
been given major importance, because of its astrological significance as
well as its innate charm.
In the world of fashion and design, old trends tend to come over again
and again, though with slight changes. Pachchikam jewelry making craft
is one of the examples of jewelry that has come back once again.
Originated in Gujarat and Kutch, centuries ago, Pachchikam jewelry has
again become popular.
Silver Jewelry, along with gold jewelry, is quite popular amongst
Indian women. Ornaments made of silver, such as rings, bracelets,
chains, necklaces, nose rings, earrings, toe rings, heavy kadas, and
armlets, form integral part of Indian jewelry.
Jewelry studded with different gems is quite popular among Indians. For
reasons ranging from spiritual to aesthetic to health, gemstone jewelry
has become the part of life of Indian women and men both. These stone
jewelries are worn according to the individual's astrological chart and
ruling of planet.
Indian jewelry art is at times divided into three kinds - temple
jewelry, spiritual jewelry and bridal jewelry. Temple jewelry of India
initially used to be described as the jewelry used to adorn the idols of
Gods and Goddesses. The statues In India were ornamented with chunky
Tribal jewelry in India is quite rich. Each tribe has kept its unique
style of jewelry intact even now. The original format of jewelry design
has been preserved by ethnic tribal. Jewelry that is made of bone, wood,
clay, shells and crude metal, by tribals, is not only attractive, but
also holds a distinct rustic charm.