Wood has been used to make ornamental items and jewelry pieces since time immemorial. Its easy availability and relative malleability make it a perfect natural resource for making jewelry. From the crude wooden jewelry sported by women in the earliest settlements to the gorgeous carved pieces seen on fashion ramps today, wooden jewelry has indeed come of age. Though wood is cheap and easily available, it can be carved, chiseled and shaped into many gorgeous designs. It has a unique, earthy beauty that is further enhanced by the beautiful painted and/or carved patterns often adorning it. Though civilizations across the world have utilized wooden jewelry at some point or the other, it is a still a living, thriving craft in India and surrounding countries. Many of the tribal groups settled in India’s forests for millennia have developed unique wooden jewelry styles, which are appreciated the world over.
Wooden earrings are perhaps the single most popular type of accessory made with wood. One of the reasons for this is that earrings are a traditional accessory of India. In most of the villages and tribes where wooden jewelry is produced, artisans tend to create earrings above all other pieces. They also enjoy a great deal of popularity amongst women living in urban areas. The naturalistic, earthy look of wooden earrings has made them a part of hippy culture. Those with bohemian tastes in fashion love to wear these accessories. The best part is, people will find men’s wooden earrings along with the varieties for women. This is because in many traditional Indian cultures it was the norm for men to wear earrings for special occasions; this tradition continues to this day. However, the designs for men’s earrings are usually a bit different from those for women. They tend to be simpler, with less designs and motifs carved or painted on.
There are many different types of wooden earrings for women. The simplest of all would be the wooden stud earrings. As the name suggests, they comprise a single, small wooden piece, which rests in the earlobe. The shape of the stud can vary from circles and squares to rectangles, oblongs, stars, triangles and other unusual geometric shapes. Their simplicity and small size makes these earrings more appropriate for daily or casual wear.
Wooden hoop earrings, on the other hand, are typically larger in size. These are essentially hoops made of wood. They can be of different sizes, from less than a centimeter in diameter, to several inches wide and long. The largest, most ostentatious hoops almost brush against the shoulder while the smallest ones fit snugly against the earlobe.
Besides studs and hoops, women can also find plenty of wooden earrings with dangling ornaments. These can be in the shape of intricate natural or religious motifs or they can just be simple, geometric, wooden shapes. Wooden bead earrings come studded with multiple globules made of wood. They can be of varying sizes and colors, or they can be 2-3 beads of exactly the same look, which are strung together. The wooden bead earring design can also come with other wooden pieces such as squares, stars, rectangles and so on. Such alternating patterns of geometric shapes are very pleasing to the eye and are highly favored amongst tribal jewelry artists.
The aesthetic depends on the technique used to make the jewelry. Some people favor the rustic, natural aesthetic, which is achieved by highlighting the ‘woody’ look and texture. Even if designs are carved, they are carved into the wood itself without any additional ornaments. These have a very mysterious and subtle look. Alternatively, bright colors can be used to make the carved designs even brighter and more visible. The designs can vary from simple nature inspired motifs to artistic, interwoven symbols and patterns. Certain jewelers just use the wood as a base, which is covered completely with metallic paint or metals. Different types of woods can also be used to vary the aesthetic.
Earthy Appeal of Wooden Earrings
Wooden earrings are hugely trendy these days. They are much loved for their intricate ethnic beauty and their bohemian, naturalistic appeal. This is why they have become so popular. Nowadays, people across the globe can get wooden earrings online. When shopping for various trending ethnic textiles and accessories, women should definitely check out the extensive collections of wooden earrings online; India based portals are likely to offer the greatest variety of designs and patterns.
There are many ways in which you can use wooden earrings to accessorize ensembles. It is best to pair them with ethnic prints and patterns that are equally unique and have the same naturalistic flavor. For instance, tunics made with mud resist techniques like Dabu printing would complement wooden earrings beautifully. Sanganeri print salwar kameez, bagru print sarees and Warli kurtis are other interesting ethnic garments that would pair well with wooden earrings.