If you’re a Punjabi bride-to-be then skip right ahead to the part with all the oomphilicious pictures and ideas. If you’re not then a little background info is in order so stick around and find out what’s the big deal about these things called Kalire. You might have noticed celebrity brides like Sonam Kapoor and Neha Dhupia wearing long metallic chains attached to their bangles as part of their bridal ensembles. It might seem odd to people from different faiths and cultures but those chains, colloquially known as Kalire have a ritual significance at a traditional sikh wedding.
On the morning of her wedding, the beautiful accessories are lovingly tied to the bride’s red bangles
(known as chooda and also an integral element of the bridal finery) by her sisters and friends. Custom dictates that after being tied the bride must tap her hands together with the kalire over the heads of unmarried girls. If any part of the kalire falls on any girl then she’s next in line to get married. The ceremony is full of warmth and laughter meant to give the bride some precious moments of female bonding with those closest to her. These days even close unmarried guys get in on the action making it a much more a unisex event.
Traditionally the kalire were supposed to be a gift for the bride from her maternal family and friends. While this practice still persists it’s not uncommon for brides to select their own kalire depending on their own style preferences. Considering the kalire are an essential bridal accessory, it’s unsurprising that many brides prefer to pick something that will work with the rest of their ensemble. Originally the kalire were handmade with silver or dry coconut and makhana stuffed with nuts and dry fruits to signify that the bride’s kitchen may never run short of food. Modern kalires are store bought and available in a plethora of styles and designs. The most common variety is gold metal encrusted with stones.
While there are literally millions of options of metallic kalire available to the contemporary Indian bride, the search for fresher takes on the conventional accessory never ceases. Just like the wedding lehenga and jewellery, brides-to-be are always on the hunt for something unique to set themselves apart from the rest. Sometimes a novel idea becomes a major trend and the kalire are no different. Tired of the metal kalire that are rather heavy and uncomfortable in addition to being extremely prone to tangling, many brides have experimented with several different materials for the dangling accessory. From gota pattis to pearls to ribbons and lots more, there is nothing that cannot be incorporated into the kalire design. However it seems that floral kalires have become THE trend for IT BRIDES all over the world.
When real bride Natasha, a former Miss India USA wore floral kalire made entirely of white roses, the Indian wedding world just couldn’t get enough of the gorgeous pictures. Her stunning kalire were worn only on one hand and featured different sizes of white rose blooms in varying lengths. The creative styling made her an instant poster girl for #bridegoals! because the effect is simple yet mesmerising. By wearing the kalire only on one hand she was not only stylish but was also not restricted while moving around. Additionally the hassle-free kalire didn’t turn into a tangled mess looking just as beautiful throughout the ceremony.
White Rose Floral Kalire
Yet another take on the white rose kalire idea is with mixed flowers. Many brides often find the gold and silver colour of metallic kalire a bit much for their contemporary lehengas. The neutrality of white makes it blend seamlessly into any colour palette and looks especially effortless with the hugely in-style pastel shades for lehengas.
White Rose Floral Kalire
Kalire made with a mix of white roses and jasminums (popularly known in India as Mogra) can look extremely dainty and elegant on any bride. Plus let’s not forget the lovely of aroma of mogra that will make any bride feel like a true queen on her big day.
White Mixed Flower Kalire
For the minimalist bride who can’t be bothered with anything too rustic but who still loves the white kalire style, orchids are the way to go. The exotic flower has such an air of sophistication about it that it doesn’t need any more dressing up. A few large white and red orchids strung together will be super light and fuss free as a kalire option.
Orchid Floral Kalire
Many brides often like to preserve their kalire as a keepsake and possible heirloom for future generations. Others also like to decorate their new bedroom with some part of the kalire as a sweet reminder of their special day. In such instances fresh flowers may not be the best idea as they will wilt and wither within a few days.
However that doesn’t mean that the floral kalire style is not an option for these brides. Artificial flowers that are often used in home décor can just as easily be substituted for real ones in any floral kalire pattern. As long the faux flowers are made from high quality materials they will look completely real while also doubling up as a cherished bridal memento.
Artificial Flower Kalire
Artificial Flower Kalire
If completely floral kalire are something you just cannot abide but still like the idea then there is a fix for that too. Paper flowers can be mixed into metallic kalire to ensure a nod to the trend while also retaining the vintage charm of authentic kalire.
Paper Flowers Mixed Into Metallic Kalire