The word bangle means – “The ornament which adorns the arm”. The tradition of wearing bangles in the Indian culture has been there since ancient times. While many traditions have changed and the outfits of the Indian women also went through a change, they still love to wear bangles. You will hardly find an Indian woman who does not have a collection of bangles in various colours and designs. Wearing bangles helps them to enhance their beauty and grace.
Bangles: An Inseparable Part of Indian Culture
Bangles have always been an inseparable part of Indian culture. It is one of the most important and mandatory pieces of ornament that an Indian woman wears, especially if she is married. Bangles in most of the Indian states signify the suhaag of the married women. They are a part of the ‘solahshringar’ ritual of the Indian brides and all the newly married women wear them to signify the long life of their husbands. They wear bangles made of glass, gold or some other metals, which can differ from state to state. But, in a nutshell, irrespective of the metal, it signifies good fortune and prosperity and breaking of the bangle is considered inauspicious.
The Significance of Wearing Bangles in Various Indian States
If you move to the south of India, gold is considered extremely auspicious. So, the ladies normally wear golden bangles,but in some communities, the brides are made to mix some green coloured glass bangles with golden bangles. This is because green colour is associated with fertility and prosperity.
If you go to West Bengal, a new bride wears a red coral bangle and a conch shell bangle locally called shakha and pola. The red colour signifies energy and prosperity and the bride is supposed to enter her new house along with these two. The mother-in-law here gifts her daughter-in-law a gold-plated iron bangle once she enters her new house. This signifies that even in adverse conditions she should stay strong and turn them around.
The brides in Maharashtra wear chooda comprising of glass bangles in odd numbers. It signifies creativity, new life and fertility. Along with this chooda, they also wear solid gold bangles and carved kadas called patlya and tode respectively. These are generally gifted by the groom’s family.
The Significance of Bangle Colours
The colour of bangles also holds importance in the Indian culture. In most of the cultures, red and green colour bangles hold a prominent position as they signify energy, prosperity, good luck and fertility respectively. Other than these two, yellow bangles signify happiness, orange success and white are meant for new beginnings. Silver bangles mark strength and gold is obviously known for fortune and prosperity.
In Indian culture, bangles are not just a piece of ornament, but they signify many things. The Indian women love to adorn their wrists with it and wear them religiously for the good health and longevity of their husbands, luck and fortune. Bangles are not just an accessory in Indian culture but a part of the identity of the Indian women.