Known as the Dev Bhoomi (Land of Gods), Uttarakhand is one of the most beautiful states of North India. It has been blessed with a rich and diverse culture. From beautiful traditional nathuli to elegant kundals/Bali, the traditional jewellery of Uttarakhand shows the simplicity of its surrounding nature and rich mythology.
The beautiful Pahari women of Uttarakhand are fond of wearing jewellery specially crafted in silver or gold, adding grace and femininity to their personality. If you have ever visited the hills, you must have seen Pahari ladies donning traditional jewellery pieces such as Bulaq (gold or silver nose ring), Kundal (gold or silver earrings), and Paunje (silver anklets) etc.
The extravagant gold necklaces such as Hansuli, Chandan Haar, and Galo bandh wore with great pride. But with time, these jewellery pieces are losing their identity as Pahari women are getting more inclined toward contemporary modern designs and the traditional jewellery pieces have become a rare sight.
Now, most of the Pahari women can see adorning the modern jewellery designs that are luxe and precious but lacks the elegance found in the traditional designs. So, let’s revive the traditional jewellery of Uttarakhand by showcasing its lustre to the world.
Traditional Jewellery of Uttarakhand:
Adorned widely by the Pahari brides, the Nath or nose ring is must-have traditional jewellery of Uttarakhand piece in the bride’s attire. Nathuli or Nath not only showcases the rich culture of the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand, but it has also become a fashion statement.
The number of pearls within the Nath signifies the financial status of the bride’s family. Tehri Nath is one of the most distinguished jewellery pieces of Uttarakhand. It was usually worn by the women at the time of marriage, at social gatherings, puja and at important family functions.
Nathuli or Nath is the charm of Pahari women which is hailed for its elegant style. It was worn by the women of Garhwal, Kumaon and Jaunsar-Bawar region of Uttarakhand. However, the design and style may differ in the both region, but its charisma remains equivalent.
The Nath or hoop of a bride is the star attraction during the marriage. The weight and number of pearls inserted during a Nath indicate the status of the family of the bride. Tehri Nath celebrated for its artistic design is one of the most distinguished ornaments of Uttarakhand, which is worn at the time of marriage, at social gatherings, puja, and at important family functions.
This large piece of jewellery not only showcases the rich culture of Garhwal but it’s also become a fashion statement that attracts tons of Pahari also as non-Pahari brides to wear it.
2. Gala bandh:
A renowned jewellery piece in Uttarakhand, Gala bandh worn by ladies from Kumauni, Garhwali, Bhotiya, and Jaunsari tribes. Gala bandh, as the name suggests, is a choker necklace worn by married ladies around their necks.
The Gala bandh, or ornamental belt, is intricately detailed. With the help of a thread, the golden square-shaped patches are attached to a red-coloured belt.
While Gala bandh is popular among rural ladies, it is less so among city dwellers. Galo bandh, also known as ‘Gala bandh,’ is one of Kumauni culture’s most important jewels. Kumauni, Garhwali, Bhotiya, and Jaunsari women wear this prestigious neckpiece.
As the name implies, the Galo bandh is knotted around the neck and solely worn by married women. The beauty of Galo bandh is that it is made on a red belt with golden square-shaped jewellery pieces that are nicely arranged with the help of a thread.
Despite being an elegant piece of jewellery, it is falling out of favor as modern jewellery has taken over the marketplace, leaving no room for traditional decorations. While the item is popular among rural women, it is not as well known among city dwellers.
Hansuli, also known as ‘Khagwali,’ is a choker necklace worn by women of the Garhwali, Kumauni, Jaunsari, and Bhotiya tribes. Hansuli or Khagwali embodies the allure and enchantment of Pahari ladies.
People with a good financial standing wear a gold hansuli, while others who are less fortunate or destitute wear a silver hansuli. Women typically wear Hansuli to festivals, weddings, social events, and significant family functions. Hansuli, also known as ‘Khagwali’ in Garhwali, is a popular decoration worn around the neck.
This stunning neck item is favoured in gold by the wealthy and silver by the less fortunate or needy. Garhwali, Kumauni, Jaunsari, and Bhotiya ladies wear Hansuli. This valuable jewellery is worn at festivals, weddings, fairs, social events, and major family functions.
Hansuli is a timeless piece of jewellery that enhances the attractiveness of Pahari women. However, in today’s world, the allure of Hansuli is decreasing as people become more interested in valuable jewellery. If this trend continues, traditional jewellery will lose its identity since no one will wear it.
Handcrafted with delicate motif designs, Bulaq is an amazing piece of nasal septum jewellery. Previously, it was worn by women from Garhwal, Kumaon, and the Jaunsar belt.
However, it is now considered an outmoded fashion and rarely worn among Pahari women. Bulaq is a beautiful piece of jewellery worn at the nasal septum. It was created by skilled goldsmiths who carved beautiful motif designs on it.
It was traditionally worn by women from Garhwal, Kumaon, and the Jaunsar belt. However, the desire for Bulaq has passed and is now considered an old trend.
A pahunchi is a gold bracelet that is popular in both the Garhwal and Kumaon regions of Uttarakhand. Pahunchi is an auspicious diamond for married ladies in Kumaon. It was typically worn by married ladies at festivals and other family occasions.
Pahunchi is manufactured in 1 tola or 3/8 troy ounce increments. The amount of gold in Pahunchi is determined by the bride’s family’s financial situation. Pahunchi’s foundation material is red cloth, which is adorned with pure gold pearls. Pahunchi is essentially gold bangles that are popular in both the Garhwal and Kumaon regions of Uttarakhand.
Pahunchi is an auspicious diamond for married women in Kumaon, and it is worn at festivals and other family occasions. Pahunchi is typically produced in one tola or more, depending on the status of the bride’s family. Red-coloured linen served as the foundation for the flawless gold pearls. The colour red was chosen since it is auspicious for married women.
One of the most embellished jewellery pieces in Pahari culture, Pauje is essentially an anklet with a sophisticated web-like construction that differs slightly from traditional Indian anklets. It is constructed of gold or silver and adorned with numerous ghunghroos, or metallic bells.
Pauje is essentially an anklet composed of silver or copper that differs somewhat from the payal or pazeb worn by Indian women. An intricate web-like design in payal embellished with Indian themes.
There were a lot of ghunghroos, or metallic bells used in Pauje. Though the designs of pauje vary throughout Kumaon, Garhwal, and Jaunsar, it is one of the most popular Pahari cultural pieces of jewellery.
Bichhuwas are silver toe rings worn by Garhwali, Kumauni, Jaunsari, and Bhotiya ladies. These are intricately designed with Indian patterns, peacocks, flowers, and petals.
Bichhuwas are toe rings worn by women of the Garhwali, Kumauni, Jaunsari, and Bhotiya tribes. It is composed of silver and intricately embellished with Indian patterns, peacocks, flowers, and petals.
Kundals are known in many local languages of Uttarakhand as ‘Munad,’ Murkhli, Munda, Balli, Tugyal, and so on. Kundals are just earrings that Pahari ladies wear. Kundals are fashioned in gold or silver and come in a variety of forms and sizes.
The most well-known is the huge gold earrings with a round shape. In different parts of Uttarakhand, Kundals are known as ‘Munad,’ Murkhli, Munda, Balli, Tugyal, and so on. Kundals are earrings that can see on the Pahari women’s ears.
They are constructed of gold or silver, and their shape and size vary depending on the lady’s desire and rank. Traditional styles have given way to fresh and sophisticated designs in recent years. Balis, on the other hand, refers to massive gold earrings in the shape of a circle. They are made of gold and worn by most Pahari ladies.
9. Kamar bandh (Tagdi/Tigdi):
Another traditional jewellery of Uttarakhand belly belt is worn around the midsection by women from various communities in Uttarakhand. There are two kinds of Kamar bandh: one made of linen, and one made of silver.
Pahari, Rajasthani, and South Indian brides typically wear Kamar bandh. Kamar bandh, which worn around the midsection by women from several communities in Uttarakhand. There are two kinds of Kamar bandh: one made of linen, and one made of silver.
It is worn over traditional clothing and knotted around the waist to give it a more feminine and delicate appearance. Many Garhwali and Kumauni ladies still wear this one-of-a-kind jewellery, which gives a five-star touch to their attractiveness.
Kan-fool is a flower that is worn on the earlobe. It is a work of art of the classic era jewellery worn by Pahari women. Kanfool is a traditional item of jewellery worn by most Pahari women. Kan-fool, as the name implies, is a Flower of Ear worn on the earlobe.
It is a work of art of the classic era jewellery worn by Pahari women. Kanthi Mala, Mungo ki Mala, Chawanni Mala, Thwaq, Gongkhle or Bajuband, Jhinwara, Pauta, Imarti, Timanya, and others are also worthy of notice.
11. Sikka Mala
The Sikka mala, also known as Kaldaar, is a type of jewellery that is popular in several Himalayan locations. This simple necklace is embellished with various antique coins or sikkas, giving it a unique appearance.
Dhagulu, also known as Dhaglu, is a spherical silver bangle. It is a popular item of jewellery in Nepal and worn in some areas of Kumaon because it shares a border with Nepal. Even now, a few elderly Kumaon women can see daintily carrying this special jewellery.
These exquisitely created gold and silver necklaces are only worn by married Pahari ladies.