Jaipur, also called the ‘Pink City’, is the capital of the state of Rajasthan in the west of India and a hub of history, culture, art, architecture, textiles and festivals. It may be a city surrounded by a desert but it has also been the seat of Rajput royalty for centuries which is why it has a reputation for producing the most exquisite, luxurious and beautiful clothes and jewelry styles. This has historically been a jewel-rich area which further allowed the jewelry trade to flourish; today, it is the prime destination for purchasing high-end traditional jewelry with exclusive designs and ornate patterns.
Since Jaipur has been a centre for jewelry production for many years, one can imagine the beautiful styles and setting techniques that have been developed and perfected in Jaipur jewellery. Apart from crafting their own indigenous styles, Jaipur jewelers have also adapted popular traditional jewelry types and made it their own. The intricately designed Jaipur gold sets containing large and elaborate necklaces, earrings, bangles and sometimes rings, nose-rings, mang tikka and other accessories as well are the most popular bridal wear accessories. Such sets can be either made of pure gold or artificial gold (or gold plated) but always contain a lot of beautiful designs and detailed motifs of leaves, flowers, peacocks or simpler geometric shapes. In fact all Jaipur jewellery designs come with stunning motifs, typically inspired by nature or Hindu religious scenes, which reflects the strong influence of the rich Rajput culture in the city.
On the other hand, there are other influences as well. For instance, the arrival of Mughals in India brought a lot of new trends in terms of clothing and jewelry, inspired by the artistic flourish of the royal wardrobes. Many styles of Jaipur jewellery show such influences, the most beloved being Meenakari jewellery. The creation of this jewelry involves enameling a metallic surface with colorful designs to produce a unique lustrous effect. Blues, green, pink, gold and red are popular colors used in the enameling. The types of designs thus created typically include peacocks, paisley, flowers, fruits and paintings of myths and scenes. This can be used to produce necklaces, pendants, earrings, bracelets, bangles, rings, toe-rings and many other Indian jewelry varieties. This technique can be combined with other techniques like Thewa or Kundan to create an ultra-luxurious effect. However, even on its own, Meenakari jewelry has a unique place in Indian culture because of its distinctive look and innovative designs.
The jewel hub of India, Jaipur, is obviously also known for its fantastic jewel-studded creations. Jaipur jewellery shops will have precious, semi-precious and crystal studded accessories, often set in distinctive Indian styles like Kundan. The process of producing Kundan jewelry is very elaborate, involving the creation of intricate pre-molded settings of gold which are then studded with gems. The final effect is highly glamorous, while also being traditional, thus making this a favorite choice for weddings, ceremonies and festivals.
Less expensive varieties of jewelry can also be found at a Jaipur jewelry ‘bazaar’ or market. This includes polished antique silver, gold, copper or bronze jewelry, oxidized silver pieces, wooden or clay necklaces and even ‘fashion’ variations of the classic designs made with low-cost artificial substitutes. Nowadays, any Jaipur jewellery house with a varied collection will also display more sophisticated, modern style jewelry as well as ‘fusion’ jewelry melding together Indian and western designs. These can be made with real or artificial diamonds.
Indian weddings can often be elaborate affairs and the bride’s side often prefers to get expensive items like Jaipur jewelry wholesale in order to get discounted rates for bulk buying. On the other hand, those seeking to add just one or two pieces to their wardrobe or those who find they cannot travel to a wholesale shop might prefer online shopping.
Matching up Jaipur Jewelry
Traditional Jaipur jewellery is the best way to dress up any ethnic outfit like a saree, Anarkali churidar or lehenga choli for a special occasion. Kundan sets are traditional bridal jewelry and match best with resplendent bridal sarees and gold work lehenga cholis. Many Indian brides reserve all their bridal shopping for items from Jaipur, knowing that they would be royally decked out on their special day in the most appropriate and beautiful clothes and accessories.
The bright and beautiful vibe of Meenakari makes it perfect for simpler outfits like a salwar kameez. Heavy gold sets are often preferred at certain festivals like Karva Chauth, especially to go with luxurious looking silk sarees. The antique polished varieties can be used to dress up more casual kurtas. The fashion pieces made with artificial materials are meant for more casual wardrobes and informal occasions, so one can incorporate a bit of ethnic glamour without spending too much money.