(Image Courtesy : Kat Braman)
Kaliras are chandelier like ornaments worn traditionally by Punjabi brides. These ornaments are attached to the chuda or bangles, on both the hands of the bride. Originally, the kaliras were made of shells, coconuts or flowers although the modern versions may be made from beaten silver, gold, gold plated metals and beads. Some of them may be encrusted and are available is many colors and designs to match the bridal outfit.
On the morning of the wedding day, the maternal uncle of the bride, present a set of ivory and red bangles called the chudda to the bride. The chudda signifies the marital status of the bride and is generally worn for around 40 days to one year after the wedding day. The brides’s sisters and friends then tie the kaliras to the bangles on both the hands and these are worn throughout the wedding ceremonies. The kaliras symbolize the blessings of her loved ones and their wishes for a blissful married life.
According to Punjabi customs, after the wedding, as the bride prepares to leave for her husband’s home, the unwed female sisters, cousins and friends of the bride line up in front of the bride. The bride then shakes her kaliras over the heads of each of them and the one over whom the kaliras fall is then said to get married next.
The glittering kaliras look very pretty against the bridal outfits and are perfect to add a traditional touch to any outfit.