The Forgotten Era of Indian Traditional Jewellery

The Forgotten Era of Indian Traditional Jewellery

Yesterday, I visited a school friend’s wedding. Looking at everything there, I suddenly realised how things have changed from the time when my grandmother got married. So I came back home and opened her wedding album.

The evolution of bridal jewellery has just been like other that we know of. Some of them have survived (but gone through significant changes), but some of them have also perished.

Here’s a list of jewellery styles which have perished or persistently revamped and resurfaced with a new look every time.

Bridal Jewellery for Different Occasion


Mangtika bridal jewellery

Then: Mangtika during earlier times was very simple as shown in the picture above. It had a strip with a little structure in the end. It was worn only with middle partition. Mangtika is known as Borla which is worn in Rajasthan by many housewives.

Now: The concept of  Mangtika has changed completely now. Although the old design is still used, you can see it is mostly worn with side parting and is no longer restricted to married women only. It’s a gorgeous ornament if you want to line your head and hairline with jewellery.

Health Benefits: Mangtika was worn to control the heat in the human body. This is the area of Ajna Chakra. This chakra signifies the union of male and females spiritually, emotionally and physically.

Hathful/Hath Panja/Haath Phool

Haath Phool bridal jewellery

Then: Hathful is a Rajput or Rajasthani jewellery which covers the back of the hand. It was worn earlier and used to be quite heavy as it covered the back of the hand.

Now: People switched over to bangles (maybe to expose their Mehendi) and big rings. However, it has now become very light-weighted jewellery and you can see people wearing it with traditional attires.

Health Benefits: The benefits of Hathful is similar to that of wearing a bangle as well as wearing a ring. Bangles help you keep the blood circulation on point and revert back the escaping energy into your body. Meanwhile, wearing a ring gives a constant friction to your rings. This, in turn, helps in bettering the health.


Nath bridal jewellery

Then: I have always picturized Nath as the jewellery for the Maharashtrians. People pierced their nose during old times without fail. Besides having health benefits, it also helps girls wear jewellery during their wedding. In some cultures, it was considered a symbol of marriage.

Now: People had stopped piercing their nose in between. But nose pins have become quite a trendy thing now and you will see many girls have their nose pierced.

Health Benefits: The Nath is worn to help breathe easily and comfortably. It also helps women to feel relieved from menstrual pain. You will see more people wearing nath on the left part of the nose as it is said to help in easing childbirth.


Bajubandh bridal jewellery

Then: Bajubandh was quite a necessary ornament once upon a time when you got married just like bangles, earrings, nath, etc.

Now: Bajubandhs have almost lost their significance now. You won’t see people wearing it because it’s a very heavy piece of jewellery. However, you might get to see these in a South Indian weddings or typical traditional ones.

Health Benefits: Bajubandh helps in blood circulation. It also creates the right amount of resistance to make the arms comfortable.


Kamarbandh bridal jewellery

Then: Kamarbandh is very South Indian jewellery. People have worn it since ages and still wear it. It is not worn much in other parts of India.

Now: It is still very evident in South Indian communities during wedding ceremonies. Other parts of India don’t wear it as bridal jewellery, but you can see girls flaunting it with modern/western wear as junk jewellery.

The size and shape of kamarbandh have also evolved while moving from South to North.

Health Benefits: Kamarbandh has one of the biggest health benefits that any girl will want. It just helps to prevent the deposition of fat on the waist.

Toe ring/Bichwa/Bicchya

Toe Ring bridal jewellery

Then: Toe rings were worn by women not only as a bridal jewellery but also as daily wear on second finger. I still see many people from previous generations wearing them. It was worn mostly in silver.

Now: Toe rings have (almost) vanished from our generation, but a revival is in order with costume jewellery designs.

Health Benefits: Toe rings were worn to get rid of a lot of gynaecological problems in women. The nerves in toes are connected to the uterus and pass through the heart. Wearing toe rings while doing daily chores is said to revive reproductive organs in a female.


Payal bridal jewellery

Then: Payal is a very girly thing. The old days payal always made a tinkering sound and was a common bridal jewellery as well as daily wear.

Now: Payal these days have evolved from soundless ones to threaded ones (anklet). You can actually make your own anklet with a thread and small accessories like beads, stars, etc.

Health Benefits: Payal was worn by women to be active. Payals are usually made of silver which is a good conductor of energy. It acts as a mediator between Earth and the human body to send the negative charge to Earth.

Waist Key Chain/Chabi Challa


Then: Waist Key Chain was used by my grandmother and her mom. It’s quite an old piece of functional jewellery. I find it a very classy and stylish.

Now: You hardly find anyone wearing it during the wedding or after marriage now.

Health Benefits: Waist Key Chain is worn to clean the throat of mucus and phlegm. It’s a non-bridal jewellery, it’s given to a woman after she gets married by her mother-in-law.

If you think we might have missed out on any of the bridal jewellery, ping us in comments below.

Disclaimer: All images used in the blog have been sourced from Pinterest purely for the purpose of informative reference. The models, celebrities or products showcased in these pictures do not relate to the brand Candere/ Jewellers in any manner.

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