Wedding is undoubtedly a beautiful day, an auspicious occasion which not only unites two souls but also two families. The Indian wedding consists of many rituals and cultural beliefs that hold significance. The same goes for the chooda and kalire.
Chooda is a set of 21 bangles in maroon and white colour, which implies being newly married. According to the tradition the bride’s maternal uncle and aunt gift the chooda to the bride during the ceremony. Earlier it was made up of ivory but these days it is made up of plastic. Chooda is considered to be one of the most important parts of a bride’s attire, as it is believed that it brings good luck in the newlywed’s life and strengthen the bond between the couple. It’s also said to bring prosperity and fertility. Chooda is worn minimum 40 days and maximum 1.5 years after marriage.
Different colours of choodas, besides the traditional maroon and white, are also available for bride’s selection like pink, orange, purple to match it to their bridal attire. Buying the chooda isn’t the last step but it is followed by other rituals, the chooda is firstly purified with milk and rose petals. After that, chooda is put on the wrist of the bride by the maternal uncle. Along with the chooda a holy thread is also tied on the wrist of the bride called ganna. Ganna is said to help to keep evil spirits away.
An umbrella shaped dangling ornament is also worn along with the chooda called kalire which signifies happiness and eternal love between the couple. Kalire are golden or silver in colour. They are tied to bride’s chooda by her sisters and friends, along with good wishes its purpose is to remind her of her cousins and friends whom she is going to leave behind when she gets married. The shape of the kalire is symbolic that she never run out of food in the new home and the metal is symbolic of wealth and prosperity.
After the wedding, the bride keeps their kalire at the parental home as a memory & the rest among are distributed to the sister-in-laws. It is said that marriages are made in heaven and celebrated on earth. The wedding is the most beautiful & sweet moment in the couple’s life. Hence, our Indian weddings are filled with rituals that are not only colorful but significant too.