The Important Types of Indian Jewellery

Jewellery has been an integral part of Indian culture. Owing to the rich heritage, there are different types of Indian jewellery to decorate each and every body part. There are hair ornaments, earrings, nose pins, necklaces, waistbands, armlets, bracelets, finger rings, anklets, toe rings and many more. Furthermore, due to India’s diverse culture each piece has a lot of variation in terms of craftsmanship and style. The following is a quick preview of the important types of Indian jewellery based on traditional craftsmanship.
  • Meenakari Jewellery – These types of Indian jewellery use brightly coloured enamel pigments fused with gold or silver in intricate patterns derived from nature like flowers, vines or animal forms. Invented in Iran, the Mongols spread the craft to India and other countries. The craft is practised more in Jaipur, Udaipur, Delhi and Banaras.
Source: www.bhagwatijeweller.in

  • Kundan Jewellery - In this type a gold foil is used to set gem stones on the base mounting piece of gold. This art originated in the royal courts of Rajasthan and Gujarat and was highly patronised during the Mughal era. Kundan is known for very elaborate and heavy necklace sets in gold. The royal appearance of Kundan makes it an important part of the types of Indian jewellery. The art is practised in Rajasthan.

  • Jadau/ Jadtar Jewellery – This jewellery has uncut diamonds (polki), gems, crystals or beads embedded in gold which is first lightly melted. The embellishments on gold are attached without any adhesives or carvings. Jadau work has Mughal descent and is practised in Rajasthan and Gujarat since Mughal era.

Source: www.mumbaigloss.in

  • Pachchikam Jewellery - This type of jewellery has a crude execution in which its beauty lies. It generally uses silver as the base metal and uncut semiprecious stones and glass work are pressed onto the metal. It originated in Rajasthan and Kutch region of India.

Source: www.utsavpedia.com


  • Thewa Jewellery - Taking an important place in the types of Indian jewellery, this is an art where intricately designed gold sheets are embossed on molten glass. It originated in Rajasthan under the Mughal influence. The designer, Roopa Vohra, has popularised it through her work.

Source: www.jaipurblog.in


  • Temple Jewellery - This jewellery was used to adorn the Hindu idols of gods and goddesses in temples. It was later worn by the temple dancers and then it found its way into the bridal trousseau. The stones used in the jewellery are called kemp stones. It originated in the South of India during the reign of Chola dynasty.
Source: www.onlinejewelryclass.biz


  • Filigree jewellery - In this art silver is made into thin wires and then the thin wires are fused together and bent to create intricate patterns. It originated in Egypt and Mesopotamia and the Indian filigree work is Greek inspired. In India fine filigree work can be seen in Orissa and Andhra Pradesh.
Source: www.polyvore.com

Looking at the types of Indian jewellery, from the time of the Maharajahs till today the Indian adornment has undergone a lot of transformation. Taking inspiration from the crafts of India the contemporary fashion jewellery has branched out.

Contemporary fashion jewellery

Indians love gold but due to heavy nature of the metal, the modern girl looks for something more contemporary that suits her lifestyle. Today’s designers have answered her quest by marrying ancient crafts with modern materials. The results are lightweight, uniquely designed amazing pieces to go with contemporary attire. Contemporary fashion jewellery takes an important place in the types of Indian jewellery and the creations of some renowned designers can be found on Strand of Silk, the website for contemporary designer wear. 
Antique finish kundan earrings by Shillpa Purii

Gold jadau cuff by Diagold


Roopa Vohra’s blue peacock thewa inspired cuff on lacquer



Filigree earrings by Roopa Vohra

Orange filigree clutch by Meera Mahadevia

The other types of Indian jewellery are the flamboyant bridal jewellery using gold and gem stones, and the new age subtle jewellery using other metals like platinum and sterling silver, with diamonds. One important member of the types of Indian jewellery is antique jewellery which is generally passed on as heirloom through families and has a dull, old world charm to it. So if you are looking to buy Indian jewellery, you will have trouble shopping, as sky is the limit!