India in pictures

Flower Rangoli

11:12 AM

a rangoli made of flowers for Diwali

In today's India in pictures, I give you the flower Rangoli I made for Diwali. Rangoli are temporary designs created in front of the door, or gate of a house for festivals, or in some communities daily. In Europe people usually call them all Mandala, because it reminds people of Tibetan artwork of the same name. They can be made with several mediums. the one above is made exclusively with flowers and leaves, and in Kerala they are done for Onam, and are called Pookkalam instead of Rangoli.
More commonly, they are made of white and coloured chalk powder, and in South India are drawn daily in front of people's house. They go by the name of Kolam in the South, and having lived in Bangalore for years, I watched my neighbours religiously wash the area in front of their gate every morning, and then proceed to draw a fresh design on the still damp concrete using loose chalk powder they could pour expertly with their hands into an often intricate design.
In North India, Rangoli, as they are called, are drawn for Diwali and ornamented further with diyas. In the recent years, it is not uncommon to find rangoli stencils for sale around that time of the year, so that even the rangoli making challenged people can end up with a perfectly traditional and symmetrical design to ornate their entrance door or hall. For the even lazier, there are readymade already painted stickers you just paste to the tile. And of course there are rhinestones kit, glitter rangoli...everything goes when it comes to Diwali ones.

I started doing Rangoli at my in-laws place the first time I celebrated there, and it has now become "that thing I do". My in-laws know that when We go to Lucknow to celebrate, I will make one. This year, I made my biggest yet, and all with flower. And because the old diya stand we bought 7 years ago broke, we bought a new one this year.
A flower rangoli with a multi-tiered Diya stand for Diwali



4 comments

  1. Anonymous11:36 AM

    Wow it is beautiful. I saw flower rangolis is shirdi too. Must have taken a long time. Bengalis make rangolid with rice paste and during laxmi pooja which is celebrated few days before diwali. They are not so intricate but simple. These traditions need to be preserved

    Apple

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I took about an hour and a half to make this one.
      I agree with you these traditions need to be preserved, plus making rangoli is really a relaxing activity, almost meditative.

      Delete
  2. Anonymous10:47 AM

    Wow. Amazing. U came up with the idea on your own? I like how the dark rose petals are placed on the outer circle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes I did come with the design on my own. the rose petals are also placed on an inner circle, but in the picture appear lighter because the light from the diyas shine on them.

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