Wedding … I guess this is one of the most memorable and best moments in every individual’s life. India as one diverse cultural land displays many colours of wedding and one of the most beautiful and flamboyant one is Punjab ki wedding. Now coming to the different traditions, as all other wedding types Punjabi wedding too host multiple customs and the chooda function is one of the most interesting ones. This is an auspicious event which is held especially for the beautiful Dulhan i.e. The bride-to-be. Let’s know more about this super interesting event.
So, What Is Chooda?
Chooda is a beautiful set of bangles and that signifies being newly married to a Punjabi woman. Traditionally chooda is a combination of beautiful red and white colours and comes in a set of 21 bangles which is considered an auspicious number. By tradition these bangles were typically made from haathi daat (i.e. elephant tusks), these days they are also made from plastic and come in a huge assortment of colours and designs.
Taking from the current design and colour front, these days Chooda come in many different colours, orange, maroon, and pink are common variations, but customization is making possibilities endless. Earlier, Chooda was a simple combination of red and white bangles, these days they sparkle with beautifully studded stones. Some ladies get custom designs too with the name of their would-be husbands embedded in it.
As I already mentioned, brides of today prefer selecting the color of their chooda to match their bridal outfit, these days red, pink, maroon, orange, and white are popular choices.
Also, the significance of number doesn’t hold of much importance, these days it is replaced with sets. Ladies have an option to opt for single, double or even triple set choodas.
Traditionally the design of the chooda had simple red dots on the white bangles, but today glitzy Swarovski and rhinestones are being used to make these bangles even more attractive. To add more to the swag, glass shaped chooda are also widely available. These typically tapers on the wrist and loosens as it heads up.
What Is This Chooda Tradition?
As I already mentioned, the chooda ceremony is held especially for the bride-to-be. The rituals mostly take place early in the morning of the wedding day at the bride’s place.
It is believed that Chooda showers in good luck for the newly wedded couple. Also, the importance of the color red for an Indian bride cannot be ignored, it is believed that this color braces the bond of love between the couple. Fertility and prosperity are also connected with the chooda.
Starting from the morning of the wedding, the bride needs to wear this chooda for a minimum period of 40 days to a maximum period of 1.5 years post wedding.
The Chooda Ceremony
We discussed the main highlights of this ceremony, now let’s sneak peek into the rituals of this ceremony.
The bride’s maternal family or her maternal uncle, “Mama” as we call is required to get the Chooda for the bride-to-be. After the priest recites holy chants and purifies the Chooda by washing it in a mixture of milk and water the bride is made to wear the chooda by her MAMA.
One interesting thing about the ceremony is that the bride is not allowed to see her Chooda before the wedding, yes, she is required to sit with her eyes closed as it is considered inauspicious. So, once the chooda is on, it is immediately covered with white cloth.
Post this ritual, a holy thread called “Gana” is tied on the chooda by the bride’s family members. This ritual is done to ward off any evil spirit around and is opened by the groom once the wedding ceremonies are over.
Chooda ceremony is followed mostly in the northern part of India. As a punjaban, I feel this is one of the most interesting things in a Punjabi wedding. Something that every married woman cherishes for her entire life.
Apart from that emotional connect, Chooda is quite a fashion trend for new brides. These days most girls irrespective of their religion wear it as a styling element. Are you getting married soon or have been recently married. Do share a picture your beautiful set of choodas with us right here.