JEWEL IN THE CROWN

Marwar - - Contents - Text T Pooja Mu­jum­dar

How does a bride en­sure her jew­ellery trousseau is in tan­dem with the mood of the sea­son? MAR­WAR talks to four top jew­ellery houses to clue in bridesto-be on how to turn their spe­cial day into a glit­ter­ing, fairy-tale af­fair.

How Ho does a bride en­sure her he jew­ellery trousseau is in tan­dem with the mood of the sea­son? What’s in this th year and what’s out? MAR­WAR M talks to four top jew­ellery je houses to clue in brides-to-be on how to turn tu their spe­cial day into a glit­ter­ing, gl fairy-tale af­fair.

THE BIG FAT IN­DIAN WED­DING HAS AL­WAYS been an elab­o­rate af­fair, but when it comes to Mar­wari wed­dings, the ex­trav­a­gance, the splurge and élan is like no other. From ex­otic des­ti­na­tions and Miche­lin-starred chefs to cu­rated de­signer trousseaus and breath­tak­ing dé­cor, noth­ing but the very best is the norm rather than an ex­cep­tion in Mar­wari wed­dings. And adding the fi­nal touch to all the splen­dour is drop-dead gor­geous jew­ellery that gives a mag­i­cal aura to the bride-to-be, mak­ing her the cyno­sure of all eyes.

We spoke to four top jew­ellery houses—Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria Jew­ellery, Bird­hic­hand Ghan­shyam­das Jaipur, White Jewels and Jaipur Jewels—to help us de­code the jew­ellery sta­ples that the com­mu­nity nurses a soft spot for, while dis­cov­er­ing the new-age Mar­wari bride’s list of must-haves and, of course, the sea­son’s trends.

A chang­ing mind­set

Many Mar­wari brides to­day per­ceive jew­ellery dif­fer­ently, it be­ing more of a form of self­ex­pres­sion that re­flects her per­son­al­ity. As Mar­wari women are steadily mak­ing their pres­ence felt in the world of business, this in­de­pen­dence has also made its way into other as­pects of their lives, pulling them away from old-fash­ioned ways. Speak­ing about this chang­ing mind­set, Vikas Jain, the founder of White Jewels, says, “Thanks to in­creas­ing global ex­po­sure and more ed­u­cated women join­ing the work­force, jew­ellery has evolved to be­come a fash­ion ac­ces­sory. As a re­sult, mod­ern Mar­wari brides have been ex­per­i­ment­ing a lot more with jew­ellery, in their bid to stand out and wear a piece that no other woman has.”

Shed­ding light on what mod­ern Mar­wari brides look for in jew­ellery, Sub­hash Na­heta, the chair­man of Jaipur Jewels, says, “To­day’s bride is far dif­fer­ent from her pre­de­ces­sors. She is clas­sic, but with an in­ter­na­tional world­view. She seeks mean­ing­ful ex­pe­ri­ences and is not afraid to be in­di­vid­u­al­is­tic.” Ac­cord­ingly, the brand’s soon-tobe-launched col­lec­tion re­volves around the theme that there are things of far greater value than pre­cious me­tals and gem­stones. “In this col­lec­tion, we have made room to in­cor­po­rate the things that are pre­cious to the wearer, like a spe­cial per­son from her past, her hopes for the fu­ture, her dreams or a mem­ory—all those valu­able things with­out a price tag,” adds Na­heta.

Mar­wari brides are also no longer scout­ing for jew­ellery that will sim­ply sit locked up in their safe de­posit boxes af­ter their wed­ding day. Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria, the founder of Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria Jew­ellery, states that young Mar­wari girls do not pre­fer pieces that are made or bought only for a given oc­ca­sion. Ac­cord­ing to her, lay­ered jew­ellery is a big hit with to­day’s Mar­wari brides. “We de­sign jew­ellery in the form of a choker, a neck­lace and a long neck­lace, which can be worn to­gether or as sep­a­rate pieces, mak­ing them mul­ti­func­tional and ‘re-wear­able’. We also de­sign pieces that dou­ble up as chok­er­cum-bracelets.”

A 150-year-old house, Jaipur Jewels owes its ge­n­e­sis to Roopc­hand Na­heta, who started his jew­ellery business in Mul­tan, now in Pak­istan. Hail­ing from what is one of In­dia’s old­est jew­ellery fam­i­lies, Sub­hash Na­heta, its pre­sent owner, has en­sured that the brand of­fers brides in­di­vid­u­al­is­tic pieces that, at the same time, re­main true to their iden­tity. The fam­ily’s legacy finds ex­pres­sion in a mélange of ex­clu­sive fine jew­ellery in jadau, di­a­monds, pre­cious and semi-pre­cious stones and real pearls. JAIPUR JEWELS

Hail­ing from Bareilly, Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria moved base to Mum­bai af­ter her mar­riage and for­ayed into the world of jew­ellery but merely pur­su­ing it as a hobby. Fif­teen years later, she has turned this pen­chant into a blos­som­ing business of de­sign­ing and man­u­fac­tur­ing jew­ellery. Spe­cial­is­ing in be­spoke pieces that keep up with the chang­ing needs of clients, her brand cre­ates jew­ellery that are a mix of In­dian and Western styles and can perk up any at­tire. AR­CHANA PARAS­RAM­PURIA JEW­ELLERY

Echo­ing sim­i­lar views, Yash Agar­wal, the cre­ative di­rec­tor di­rec­tor of Bird­hic­hand Ghan­shyam­das Jaipur, i says, “One of the big­gest jew­ellery trends for this wed­ding sea­son is mul­ti­ple lay­er­ing of neck­pieces: pair beau­ti­fully carved chok­ers with mul­ti­ple neck­pieces for a re­gal look,” he sug­gests. He also opines that mod­ern Mar­wari brides have fi­nally started ap­pre­ci­at­ing di­a­monds, coloured stones, jadau and con­tem­po­rary jew­ellery, as op­posed to the erst­while ob­ses­sion for heavy gold jew­ellery.

Back to the clas­sics

Ac­cord­ing to Sub­hash Na­heta, this wed­ding sea­son is also see­ing a glo­ri­ous re­turn to tra­di­tion, be­cause even though the mod­ern bride wants to set her­self apart, she still has a con­ven­tional role to play on her big day. “Polki jew­ellery will con­tinue to rule the roost this wed­ding sea­son, while enam­elled jadau jew­ellery in hues of pink, blue and white will add fresh­ness to the trousseau of the ex­per­i­men­tal bride-to-be,” he adds. Yash Agar­wal agrees that the Mar­wari bride-to-be cer­tainly has no qualms about em­brac­ing her tra­di­tions. Ac­cord­ing to him, over­sized naths and tra­di­tional Ra­jasthani bor­las are the sea­son’s big­gest hits.

Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria feels that soli­taires are a clas­sic choice. “Soli­taires are some­thing that brides can never get tired of, and this year, we are see­ing a lot of brides opt­ing for them. We spoil the brides for choice by of­fer­ing them an ex­quis­ite va­ri­ety of soli­taires, and ask­ing them to pick a shape and size. We then de­sign the en­tire piece around it.” Vikas Jain’s views sim­i­larly re­flect Mar­waris’ love for tra­di­tional jew­ellery, es­pe­cially jew­ellery in­spired by royal per­son­al­i­ties and the Mughal era. “Af­ter all,” he says, “a Mar­wari wed­ding is an elab­o­rate cel­e­bra­tion of style.”

Bird­hic­hand Ghan­shyam­das is counted amongst Jaipur’s old­est jew­ellery houses. Hav­ing carved a niche for it­self in the lux­ury jew­ellery seg­ment over the years, the house is known for com­bin­ing age-old tra­di­tional tech­niques with ad­vanced mod­ern tech­nol­ogy. Cater­ing to the up­per crust of so­ci­ety, the brand spe­cialises in hand­crafted cre­ations that rein­ter­pret art, craft or her­itage that has gone astray, through orig­i­nal de­signs, con­tem­po­rary adap­ta­tions and edgy cre­ativ­ity. BIRD­HIC­HAND GHAN­SHYAM­DAS JAIPUR

The state­ment fac­tor Even though Mar­waris are deep-rooted in their tra­di­tions, they also do not mind in­dulging in the lat­est trends. In fact, to­day’s brides are all for mar­ry­ing her­itage with a gen­er­ous dose of moder­nity. Speak­ing about how this also makes for a prac­ti­cal choice, Sub­hash Na­heta says, “While clas­sic jew­ellery de­signs are an im­por­tant part of any bri­dal trousseau, in­fus­ing con­tem­po­rary el­e­ments into them makes the jew­ellery more ver­sa­tile, thereby mak­ing it adap­tive to suit both In­dian and Western en­sem­bles.”

An­other trend that seems to be gain­ing mo­men­tum is wear­ing state­ment pieces that do all the talk­ing. But brides do not need to look to the West for in­spi­ra­tion—even tra­di­tional In­dian or­na­ments are be­com­ing state­ment pieces of a new kind. Ac­cord­ing to Yash Agar­wal, don­ning state­ment head­pieces is par­tic­u­larly au courant. He goes on to ex­plain that mod­ern Mar­wari brides who like to ex­per­i­ment can opt for an un­con­ven­tional look by team­ing a beau­ti­ful matha patti with chunky lay­ered neck­pieces. Sub­hash Na­heta feels that over­sized

naths and haath­phools are must-haves for brides-to-be to make a state­ment on their wed­ding day; and head­pieces like big tikkas, chip­kas and elab­o­rate matha pat­tis too are high up on the trend charts. “State­ment ac­ces­sories like knuckle and palm rings will be in vogue for prewed­ding show­ers and cock­tail evenings to kick-start the fes­tiv­i­ties,” he adds.

Mean­while, Vikas Jain em­pha­sises on the need for brides to wear state­ment jew­ellery studded with fancy coloured di­a­monds in or­der to make an ever­last­ing im­pact. Ac­cord­ing to him, dual gold chok­ers em­bel­lished with fine di­a­monds and coloured stones make it to the top of the list.

Trousseau es­sen­tials

By virtue of be­ing house­hold names and know­ing the art of in­no­vat­ing well, these four top jew­ellery houses are sea­soned hands that cater to all kinds of bri­dal jew­ellery. So, what are their of­fer­ings that can serve as must-haves for Mar­wari brides this sea­son, while ac­cen­tu­at­ing their nat­u­ral beauty and wed­ding at­tires?

For Bird­hic­hand Ghan­shyam­das Jaipur, it is their ‘Delhi Dur­bar’ col­lec­tion that they feel will make heads turn at the wed­ding, with each piece in­spired by jew­ellery worn by royal fam­i­lies of yesteryears. “The col­lec­tion cel­e­brates In­dian brides who love to wear tra­di­tional jew­ellery in their own unique way. We have in­cor­po­rated age-old tra­di­tional tech­niques, mod­ern sil­hou­ettes and pas­tel hues into the jew­ellery and worked with su­pe­rior qual­ity gem­stones like Mughal carved ru­bies, clas­sic rose-cut di­a­monds, old Euro­pean-cut di­a­monds, pink sap­phires, polkis and nat­u­ral pearls,” re­veals Yash Agar­wal.

While Mar­wari brides are in­creas­ingly go­ing by strong pref­er­ences and choices, they are also mak­ing sure that their picks com­ple­ment their roots. With this in mind, Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria Jew­ellery’s new and in­no­va­tive col­lec­tion ex­plores a cul­tural con­nect in terms of the de­sign. “We dug deep into our roots and crafted a range of Ra­jwadastyle pieces, pache­lis, mod­ern ele­phant bracelets and jadau wear, es­pe­cially for Mar­wari brides,” says Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria.

The idea that jew­ellery should be an au­then­tic ex­ten­sion of how the bride wishes to com­mu­ni­cate what is im­por­tant to her finds favour in Jaipur Jewels’ new bri­dal col­lec­tion. Sub­hash Na­heta ex­plains: “With our new bri­dal col­lec­tion, brides can tap into their in­di­vid­u­al­ity and bring deeper mean­ing to what is likely to be the most im­por­tant day of their lives. For some brides, it will be like a blank can­vas for their per­sonal iden­tity, while for oth­ers, who would like to bring their own per­son­al­ity to the ta­ble and yet not mess with tra­di­tion, this col­lec­tion would be a medium of self-ex­pres­sion.”

For brides who want to keep it tra­di­tional yet trendy, White Jewels has worked with coloured stones and un­cut di­a­monds to cre­ate ma­ha­rani-style neck­laces to match with the wed­ding out­fit, along with shoul­der dusters which are a safe bet as fun and light­weight jew­ellery and are per­fect for the mehndi cer­e­mony and cock­tail par­ties. Vikas Jain also rec­om­mends brides to in­vest in new­fan­gled ear­rings, rein­vented jhumkas and chand­balis to cre­ate an ele­gant state­ment.

Vikas Jain, the founder of White Jewels, dis­cov­ered his true call­ing at a young age, when his mother, af­ter notic­ing his eye for in­tri­cate de­tail, in­spired him to take up jew­ellery de­sign. With her un­con­di­tional sup­port, he set out to make his name in the world of jew­ellery through mes­meris­ing in­no­va­tions and ex­tra­or­di­nary fi­nesse. White Jewels prides it­self on its artis­tic fu­sion of Indo-Western de­signs—show­cased in ev­ery­thing from cap­ti­vat­ing pen­dants and ex­quis­ite neck­laces to scin­til­lat­ing bracelets and sig­na­ture rings—that makes every woman feel like roy­alty. WHITE JEWELS

Sub­hash Na­heta

Ar­chana Paras­ram­puria

JEW­ELLERY FROM WHITE JEWELS

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