"Kundan" means gold and "Polki" means uncut diamonds. Jewellery that is created using these two materials is popular as Kundan Polki Jewelry. Kundan Jewelry always has enameled design work known as Meenakari on the reverse side and can be worn on both sides. Hence Kundan Pokli Jewelry is also known as Kundan Meena Jewelry. Since this is mostly manufactured in Jaipur and Bikaner of Rajasthan,India it is also known as Bikaneri, Jaipuri or Rajasthani jewelry. Kundan Jewelry is also called as Jadau or Jadtar Jewelry in Gujarat.
Kundan jewelry has a very distinctive appearance in terms of shapes, sizes and style.It resembles pave setting in some ways.This was the only form of setting for stones in gold until claw or bezel settings were introduced under the influence of western jewellery in the nineteenth century. Today many of the Kundan Jewelry pieces are vintage and antique heirloom pieces.
Making Process of Kundan Jewelry
Kundan making technique is the oldest jewellery form in India. Here is a short guide on how to make kundan jewellery.
- A designer known as "chitteria" sketches the jewelry pattern on paper.
- From this pattern, a gold structure framework or "Ghaat" is then shaped by goldsmith "sunaar"
- A "ghaaria" (engraver) engraves holes in this structure for the inlaying of stones.
- Each hole is then filled with a natural lacquer substance called 'lakh'. The lakh is then covered by a very fine film of pure silver to give a shiny background to the uncut diamond. This process is known as "Paadh"
- The diamond is then 'pressed' in the lakh and the edges of the laquer is gently pressed to secure the stone in place. Once the lakh dried up, it would harden and hold the stone in place.The process of applying gemstones on the gold structure is done by "jadiya" and is known as Khudai .
- More gold is applied around the edges to strengthen the setting and give it a neat appearance. This process is known as "Pakai".
- To give a well groomed finish, entire reverse side of the jewelry was beautifully decorated by an enamel technique called "meenakari" in vibrant Blue, Red, Green, White and Gold colors. This gives a stained glass type of effect and and also makes the jewelry reversible i.e. can be worn both sides.
This luxury Kundan style jewelry pieces ,inspired by the royalty of Rajasthan, are mesmerizing with their amazing colors, beautiful stones and unique form.Being bold and trendy, this collection is not necessarily for the woman who prefers minimalist jewelry but the detail and delicacy of these pieces will draw appreciation from anybody.