Jewellery of Jammu & Kashmir

The craftsmen of Jammu and Kashmir have over the years excelled in the art of making jewellery with stones, gold and silver. They have transformed their skills onto making ornaments with finesse and ingenuity. The rural men and women folk in Jammu and Kashmir wear huge circular ear rings called kundalas while large anklets called nupura are worn by the rural women in Jammu. The women of Rajouri district fancy a silver cap or crown known as chaunk phool which is worn on the head under the veil. The tika worn on the forehead, the nose ring called balu and a fine gold filigree wrist ornament called band or kada are some fine specimens of bridal jewellery which can be seen in Jammu.

Halqaband, a traditionally tight choker which is studded with rubies, emeralds, semi-precious stones and even mirrors is usually made of silver, gold or brass and has interlocking sections joined together with thread. The dejihor which hangs from the upper portion of the ear is worn by every Pandit woman as a symbol of marriage. Gunus, a thick bangle of solid gold and silver with a snake or lion head at either ends is popular even today.

Srinagar, a centre for precious and semi-precious jewellery is flooded with traditional as well as modern designs. Most of the jewellery is custom made to met the demand of the ever increasing market. Jammu city has goldsmiths who repeatedly make traditional designs of jhumkas and naths for local consumers. The jewellery of Ladakh region is unique, distinctive, and bears links to its regional history. The Ladakhi women wear an ornament called sondus or branshil, a marriage symbol fixed on the left shoulder which has a few gold or silver discs connected by a number of long silver strands and is given by a mother to her daughter at the time of marriage. An extraordinary head dress called perak, are worn by Ladakhi women wear, and has between 20 and 200 large turquoise and other stones set across a wide leather piece.