The indian jewelry it has been an integral part of their culture for thousands of years and is worn on almost every occasion. Known for being elaborate, intricate, detailed, and colorful, Indian jewelry is bold and eye-catching. Do you want to know about this jewelry? Keep reading! Next, we will tell you everything you need to know. From the history and what are the types of Indian jewelry, to how to use and choose the perfect piece, whether or not it is from this Asian country.

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history of indian jewelry

The indian jewelry It dates back more than 5,000 years to the Indus Valley Civilization, where the first jewelery was made using less sophisticated techniques than today. Since then, India has developed very distinct styles and techniques that have made its jewelry remarkable and unique. The wide territorial extension of the country gave rise to different groups of people creating different styles of jewelry, suitable for their region.

For Indian women, jewelry is not only a way to beautify themselves, but also has great cultural and traditional significance.

Materials used in Indian jewelry

Diamonds, gold, and pearls are popular materials for types of Indian jewelry. Although the materials used in the indian jewelry They can vary, among the most popular are:

Yellow gold

Yellow gold is highly valued in India and is considered an asset. Gold is one of the most popular metals in Indian jewelry as it is believed to be an auspicious material and symbolizes Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity and fortune.

A curious fact is that anklets in India are never made of gold, since that would be similar to putting God at the feet of whoever wears the jewel.

precious stones

Gemstones are the heart of the indian jewelry, as they allow you to add elaborate patterns and beautiful colors to your designs. Turquoise, ruby, sapphire, topaz, agate, jade, and amethyst are among the most popular. These gemstones not only add color but also value to jewelry.

Gemstones are also chosen for their healing and mystical powers. They are believed to bring wealth, prosperity, good health and happiness to a person.


Diamonds are highly coveted indian jewelry, but especially when creating a type of jewel called Polki. Diamonds increase the value and affordability of jewelry, but also make it heirloom-quality pieces.


These are combined with other gemstones and metals to create elaborate pieces of jewelry. The opacity of the pearls combined with the brilliance and color of the gemstones makes the jewelry elegant and modern.

What are the types of Indian jewelry?

There are many types of Indian jewelry, as we mentioned before, so we will describe some of the most prominent.

Indian Kundan Jewelry

Kundan jewelry, also known as Bikaneri or Jaipuri jewelry, is one of the most popular types of indian jewelry. This variety is especially famous in Rajasthan. It refers to a type of gemstone jewelry, where highly refined gold is combined with beautiful gemstones. To create elaborate and intricate pieces. The word ‘kundan’ means pure gold.

Although precious materials like gold, sapphire, and pearls are popularly used in kundan jewelry, alternatives like brass, glass, plated metals, and fake gemstones are substituted when creating affordable pieces.

What defines kundan jewelry is the layer upon layer of stones and metals that come together to form beautiful designs. Each stone is mounted on its own sheet of metal, which frames it, accentuates its shape and separates it from the rest of the stones in the design.

The back of kundan jewelry is typically enamelled using the Meenakari technique, which can make the piece reversible and therefore more versatile.

Kundan is typically worn by brides, wedding guests, or for any formal function. Many modern Indian women style kundan jewelry with contemporary clothing to give it a stylish and modern look.

Meenakari Jewelry

Meenakari refers to an enamel technique used in various types of Indian jewelry. The beauty of the technique is in its bright, vivid colors and its smooth, polished appearance. It’s a great jewelry style for fun, modern pieces as well as traditional Indian designs.

When looking at a piece of meenakari jewelry, you might assume at first that it’s all colored gemstones, but if you look closer, you’ll notice the enameled artwork. Meenakari is often combined with pearls, diamonds, and other colored gemstones.

polki jewelry

Polki jewels are one of the most notable types and are impressive when crafted correctly. Polki features uncut rough diamonds combined with gold and other precious stones. Diamonds are not polished to shine, and it is the raw look that gives Polki jewelry its distinctive look.

Because Polki jewelry is made from diamonds, it goes without saying that the pieces are often expensive. It is a sign of wealth and status to own Polki jewelry and these are typically cherished and passed down from generation to generation as precious heirlooms. Most of Polki’s pieces featured Meenakari’s work at the bottom, similar to Kundan.

Jali Jewelry

Jali jewelry is characterized by exquisite metal work with metal mesh and filigree. The word Jali refers to the type of stone carvings found in Indian architecture. These feature elaborate and detailed stone filigree designs. Jali screens, made of wood, are also used in houses to mark spaces.

In Jali jewelry, the focus is on metal rather than gemstones and the manipulation of metal into intricate latticework patterns. It is a work of art and requires the design to be drawn on the metal and then cut with a small saw. The metal piece is then polished to make it shiny and shiny. This is a time-consuming and labor-intensive process, but the resulting work of art is well worth it.

How and when to wear Indian jewelry?

Wearing Indian jewelry, if not originally from India, can be seen as cultural appropriation. While there may be those who may be fine with it and see it as an honor to their culture, others may find it disrespectful.


Some celebrities have been involved in scandals for inappropriately wearing Indian jewelry. Provoking outrage among the Indian community, for not respecting the meaning behind the jewelry.

In any case, some occasions in which the use of Indian jewelry can be appropriate are:

  • If you are attending an Indian event and the dress code is Indian
  • If you attend an Indian wedding ceremony
  • If she marries an Indian
  • If she is married to an Indian

It is important to emphasize that a piece of indian jewelry simply because it looks pretty. These go much further. If you decide to wear Indian jewelry, try to discover the meaning behind the pieces and then see if it is appropriate to wear them.