Ask any woman for what she likes in her jewellery collection and she would immediately say Kundan jewellery. The Jadau Kundan jewellery has always been in demand. Antique polished, gold Kundan and Meenakari necklace, pendant armlet with enamel on the reverse, Kundan Meenakari bangles, rings, chokers and bracelets are very much in demand. Kundan pieces with large size coloured precious and semi-precious stones are the rage.
High in demand
One of the oldest forms of jewellery made and worn in India is the 24 carat pure gold Kundan jewellery. Kundan jewellery is recognised to be the best image of experienced craftsmanship and matchless talent. It is one of the most delicate traditional jewellery. The word Kundan itself means ‘pure gold’ justifying the use of superior gold in designing this jewellery.
Kundan jewellery has caught up with urban India recently though it was worn since ancient times. It was very much in vogue in the state of Rajasthan during the empire of the Rajputs when the rich kings used to prefer such jewellery that was inlaid with precious gems and stones.
Exquisite Kundan jewellery was in high demand in the royal household and intricate carvings were the most sought after designs. Today, they have become more affordable and are considered to be one of the trendiest fashion symbols. Many young girls buy Kundan Jewellery sets for auspicious occasions since they look grand with ethnic Indian clothes.
Kundan jewellery is traditional jewellery that is exclusive to India. Available in different colours and designs, the gold used in making Kundan jewellery is of a very refined quality. The process by which precious stones, gems and beads are set on the gold ornament is also called Kundan by the craftsmen. Making this jewellery requires lot of skill and a fine eye for details.
The art of designing Kundan jewellery is called Kundankari, which involves lots of expert craftsmen involving chiterias, ghaarias, the goldsmith etc. Kundan jewellery is not set on solid gold. The central part of this jewellery is made of lac, which is a kind of solidified tree resin. The hollow jewellery pieces that are joined to make the Kundan jewellery are bored with holes where precious stones and gems are inserted. Since the lac is visible through the holes, very highly refined gold is poured in order to cover up those holes. The stones are then set or rather pushed into the cool but pliant gold. When the gold finally hardens, the stones get embedded in it.
At times, more Kundan is layered on to finish the piece to strengthen joints and add to the beauty of the jewellery. This was the traditional way of designing them, until the western techniques of claw setting were introduced. The stones used in the jewellery vary from event to occasion and even the regions. The usual stones used in Kundan work include bright green, crystal rock, topaz, amethyst, jade, agate, garnet etc.
Often Kundan work is combined with enamelling, Meenakari, so that a piece of jewellery has two equally beautiful surfaces, enamel at the back end and Kundan set gems in the front. Meenakari involves the fusion of coloured minerals, such as cobalt oxide for blue, copper oxide for green. This, on the surface of the metal, gives the effect of precious stone inlay work. The particular mode employed is known as Champleve where the metal is engraved or chased in such a way as to provide depressions within which the colours can be embedded. The colours are applied in order of the hardness those requiring more heat first and those requiring less heat later.
The conventional Kundan jewellery is undoubtedly the most beautiful jewellery sets that a bride can adorn in her life. Accessible in a broad assortment of shades and designs, these stylish set of jewellery can match any coloured bridal outfit. It is a bride’s first choice as it is a paragon of aesthetic values and royalty. The jewellery consists of earrings, bracelets, necklaces, bangles and mang tilak.
This jewellery blends properly with the bridal lehenga cholis and sarees. Designer sarees and lehengas also complement with the kundan jewellery. It is offered in silver, golden and copper shades to match almost any outfit. As this jewellery is heavily set, it generally blends nicely with the bridal outfit or intensely embroidered outfits. It is difficult to locate any other Indian jewellery with these kinds of matchless attractiveness as the Kundan jewellery.
Silver as well as gold and copper gemstone wedding jewellery, studded with semi-precious and precious stones are available in various colours and so they are purchased to match and highlight the colours in the wedding outfit. Ornaments, adorned with pearls and jewels having exquisite Kundan polki, Meenakari work, are some other well-preferred options in wedding jewellery.
The Kundan jewellery sets are a unique mix of modern styles and traditional models which makes them even more beautiful and alluring in the global markets. Recognised for exceptional craftsmanship, this jewellery without doubt includes a golden touch to the brides’ attire. Styles usually include precious or semi-precious rubies, diamonds, emeralds, and sapphires in them, but less expensive Kundan jewellery styles are also available. Now a day motifs inspired by western designs also find expression in antique ornaments.
Wedding jewellery embellished with Kundan work is one of the most popular traditional decorative jewellery styles. Ornaments, embedded with beautiful and radiant gemstones, are also loved deeply. These truly magnificent pieces with their royal look are truly a good buy and one can always pass it on to the next generation as a family heirloom as there beauty and value can only age to look even better.