Bangles are very important to Indian women, ‘married women should never have bare wrists’, my friend told me after seeing me bangleless. The next time I saw her she had sweetly bought me a beautiful set, which I have worn every day since.
Glass bangles are traditionally worn and even though it is very inauspicious to admit, I have accidentally smashed a couple, wearing two gold ones at either end usually protects the fragile glass ones.
You want to avoid breaking a bangle as it is seen as a bad omen, oh darn.
These glass bangles are difficult and painful to put on, there is a special knack to it. I thought it would be preferable to buy a bigger size but there is a traditional belief that the smaller, the happier the marriage. I wonder if that means women with big hands have unhappy marriages? Should we perhaps test this theory with a survey?
During weddings and festivals, lots of bangles are worn. It was quite the scandal when I didn’t wear many bangles during my wedding, so this festival season I will make sure I will not commit the same faux pas.
After getting a new head for Goddess Lakshmi for the upcoming Mahalakshmi festival, we had to buy her some new bangles. Bangle shopping is great in India, so many to choose from. So many styles and colours to choose from, each with their own meaning. Green bangles have a special significance in Maharashtra (fertility and prosperity), we bought some itty bitty glass ones with a couple of pearl bangles to separate them. They will look very beautiful, I am now extremely excited for this festival to arrive!
There was a small man sat in the bangle shop, who looked to be in his eighties. He had dark lined skin and wore a crisp cream shirt; his facial expression was very solemn, pensive and weary from a long life’s work. What struck me about this old man selling bangles was that his serious face was completely covered in multicoloured glitter, more glitter than a cabaret drag queen. I guess it’s an occupational hazard.