Bangles – The Traditional Accessory That Is Today a Part of Fashion

Call it by any name – chudiyaan, kangan, valayal or valla — bangles are an integral part of an Indian woman’s attire. While these only serve to enhance the beauty of a lady, they are much more than just simple add-ons that adorn the wrist.
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The rich history of tradition and lifestyle are attached to these items of fashion and tradition.

The use of bangles simply by earlier civilizations was first discovered when a figurine of a dancing girl was excavated from Mohenjedaro (means Pile of the Dead in the Sindhi language) – an ancient city and a contemporary of the Egyptian and Roman city states which were once prosperous 2500 years ago. The left arm of the dance girl was adorned with bracelets – proof that they were regarded an integral part of a woman’s attire during those days. What followed was a flurry of discoveries, starting with the excavation of copper bangles at Mahurjari. Close on its heels was your discovery of some pieces belonging to the Mauryan Empire as well as the excavation of gold ones from the historic web site of Taxila. The time line of these civilizations revealed that bangles had been a part of the culture of India as far back as 6th Century BC.

The wearing of bangles continues to be a delightful tradition throughout India. A traditional wedding in the Eastern state of Bengal calls on the bride to wear 3 types of this item: conch cover bangles, lacquer bangles as well as metal bangles. Each one holds its own importance, for instance the iron ones or even ‘loha’ signify a gift by the mother-in-law to the bride. Shell ones along with the ones made of red coral decorate the hands of married lady in Bengal and serve as emblematic of her marital status. Off white pieces or choodas, as they are usually famously known, adorn the arms of young brides in the north states, for a period of 21 times to a year after marriage, with respect to the customs of the family of the bride. Rajasthani women, on the other hand, are seen putting on them from their wrists to their upper arms from the day of their marriage towards the day they are widowed. Married Maharashtrian women prefer glass ones within green, which is considered an auspicious color, while elsewhere in the country females adorn their wrists with crimson ones to symbolize their significant other status and well-being of their partners.

Derived from the Hindi word ‘bungri’ meaning ‘glass’, bangles found via excavations all over the country suggest that terracotta, layer, copper, bronze, silver, and gold were among the preferred materials for bangles back in those days. These days as well, the wide range made of precious plus non-precious metals give women a lot to choose from although glass and ones are still preferred for more traditional occasions like weddings and pujas, and plastic ones or glass types along with gold or silver parts for daily use.

Bangles are not, however , limited to only traditional attire. Recent trends show Indian ladies using them as fashion accessories with modern, western outfits. Not only do these make a stylish and chic look, but they also successfully reflect the Native indian woman of the 21st century, who is a perfect balance of traditional values as well as a contemporary outlook. From five yr old girls to seventy year old grandmothers, bangles are a favorite accessory of girls across age groups and regions.

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