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All about Gold Ornaments

Types of Gold

Gold is known to be the most sought after metals, all over the world as it is the first choice for people wanting to craft jewellery in any form. Alternatively, it is purchased purely for investment purposes. There are many variants of gold available depending on the purpose of use and the alloy created. Gold can be classified under the following heads:

Gold Karats

Karat is the measure which determines the purity of Gold and tells us the actual content of gold in a particular piece of jewellery or item. 10K, 12K, 14K, 18K, 22K, and 24K are the most common variations available. Jewellery is rarely made in 24K gold as it is very soft in its purest form and is therefore mixed with other metals to give it proper shape and form.

Colour

When gold is mixed with other metals, it acquires a distinct colour and is therefore found in various colours.

  • White Gold: When mixed with metals such as manganese, palladium or nickel, gold gets a white colour which is widely used in jewellery nowadays. The alloy is generally formed with 58.5% gold mixed with 12.73% Nickel, 7.84% zinc and 21% copper. This is generally found in 14K category. Rhodium plating is done on white gold to give it extra shine.
  • Rose Gold: Rose Gold is an alloy formed with gold and copper and the colour gets darker with the increase in the quantity of copper. This type of Gold is generally 12K category.
  • Green Gold: Also known as Electrum, this is a natural combination of gold and silver and gets its name from the colour that it gets. Other such variations are Blue Gold, Purple Gold and Black Gold. ###Gold Bullion

Gold Bullion is pure gold in the raw form and is a prevalent form of investment for investors. Among these, the most popular ones are gold bars and coins which are easily available and the prices vary as per market trends. The gold bullions come in the form of rectangular bars, biscuits, wafers and coins. In many parts of the world, these coins and bars are embedded with specific marks, logos or signs.

Other types of gold include gold scrap, unrefined gold and numismatic gold coins, but the latter is now a thing of the past.

What is the Importance of Gold Ornaments in India?

Possessing gold in any form is considered a great form of investment in India. Almost all income bracket people aim to buy some amount of gold in the form of jewellery, investment, gifting, etc. It is also considered as a measure of prosperity and abundance. Let us see why gold is so prevalent in the Indian social sector.

  • Status Symbol: Gold, owing to its high market value, is a mark of wealth and prosperity. Therefore, buying, possessing and flaunting gold ornaments earns a status symbol for the owner. It has been so from the olden times when the royal families and high rank people flaunted their riches in the form of jewellery and adornments.

  • Inheritance: Another important role of gold has been associated with inheritance where a jewellery and ornaments are passed from generations to their successors as part of the family heirloom. It is a matter of great pride and honour to inherit valuable gold jewellery, artefacts and other items as gifts from ancestors which are held in high regard.

  • Valued Investment: Gold is known to be one of the most lucrative investments as it is believed that it will always increase in value, thereby bringing higher returns. People with meagre or humble earnings also strive to save enough to purchase gold in their lifetime to make secure investments for their future.

  • Gifts and Presents: Gold is considered to be auspicious in India and hence, it is widely used as a gift for occasions such as weddings, child birth, birthdays, festivals and other such grand events in the family or among friends.

  • Religious Beliefs: As gold is considered pure and auspicious, it is a common practice in India to make gold offerings to deities and temples which are believed to bring good luck and prosperity in return. There are special days assigned which are considered auspicious to purchase gold, keeping the religious sentiments of people in mind.

Types of Gold Ornaments

Gold has been widely used in almost all parts of India for varied purposes like festivals, worshipping, wedding rituals, corporate and personal gifts, decorative artefacts and many such other things. The increasing use of gold has led to innovative creativity to enhance the worth of the metal. Some of the uses of gold are mentioned below:

  • Idols of deities: Though a rare thing to see, but there are a few affluent households which have idols of gods and goddesses made in gold adorning their place of worship. It is held as a sign of prosperity and reverence to have such idols in the house.

  • Worship Thalis: This is another example of the deep rooted religious mind-set where people use plates, bells, small bowls and water vessels of gold to perform their rituals while worshipping. It is generally found in big temples or in households of the affluent families.

  • Gold-plated Artefacts: The growing trend of decorating houses with rare and uncommon things has brought to light many gold or gold-plated show pieces and artefacts which adorn the shelves or the walls of the houses of the rich and the famous. It is also a great status symbol to decorate your houses with such pieces as gold definitely has high monetary value.

  • Jewellery: This is by far the most common and the best use of gold where people buy gold jewellery for the women of the house. At the same time, it serves the purpose of asset investment. The advantage of buying any jewellery is the utility it provides and also that it comes in such a wide variety that people belonging to any income bracket can invest in them.

  • Gifts: Giving gold coins as gifts has been prevalent in India from time unknown. The kings and merchants were known to give gold coins as gifts on all occasions and it continues till this date. Gold coins and bars are given as gifts for marriages, birth of a child, buying a new home, birthdays, anniversaries and any other big or small occasion. It is considered to be auspicious as well as great value for money.

Gold Rate in Metro Cities

Rate of gold keeps changing very frequently as it is in consistence with the market trends. As Gold is considered auspicious and is bought by a large section of the society around the time of festivals or on certain pre decided dates, the rate at times gets inflated. This demand and supply curve of the market, along with the strength of currency rates, determines the rate of gold at a given point of time.

The current rate of gold in some of the prominent cities currently are listed below:

Name of the City22 Karat Gold Rate per 10 grams24 Karat Gold Rate per 10 grams
Bangalore3545237212
Chennai3609237932
Hyderabad3610837888
Delhi3696838838
Kerala 3659038370
Mumbai3681938669
Kolkata3723839088
Pune3685538655
Bhopal3683938659
Jaipur3750639356
Surat3748939349
Nagpur3687538655
Ludhiana3700138851
Lucknow3701038820
Jammu3701638836
Chandigarh3699638846
Indore3687438714
Thiruvananthapuram3492936639
Guwahati3717839078

Types of Traditional Gold Ornaments in India

Indian traditional jewellery comprises a wide variety in terms of design, style, material and usage. Gold jewellery plays a major role in this and is used by almost all Indians in some way or the other, which makes it one of the most sought after commodity. There is an array of gold jewellery items available in the market today and to list them down is a daunting task. Here is a basic list of gold jewellery most commonly used in the Indian subcontinent:

  • Necklaces: Indian women from ancient times have worn neck pieces to adorn their beauty and it has been an integral part of their attire with traditional value attached to them. With time, gold has replaced other metals and materials and when we go through the pages of history, we see how queens and other women from all sections of the society wore gold necklaces of various sizes and designs. Today, we have gold necklaces combined with other precious stones and diamonds which are worn by the modern women giving an ethnic touch to their appearance.
  • Earrings: Earrings are the most used kind of gold jewellery as they can be worn in combination with any attire and come in all kinds of shapes, sizes and designs. They add to the overall look of an attire and are of great cosmetic value.
  • Rings: Rings are worn by both men and women and hence, are more popular. The most important role of the gold ring is that it is exchanged at the time of engagement as a promise of commitment. This significance of the ring has also been highlighted through our mythological stories. Today, rings are not only worn as a symbol of commitment, but are more like a style statement with designer rings which are the prized possession of any fashionista.
  • Bangles: Indian women are known for wearing beautiful bangles. Gold bangles come in many varieties and designs to choose from. The kada or a thick bangle with intricate craftsmanship is one of the must haves for women which gives them a very ethnic look. The thin bangles with charms attached to them are a rage with the young girls as it is very trendy and adds to their style statement. Bangles are also considered to be a sign of marriage and hence, hold great importance in Indian culture.
  • Mangalsutra: The Mangalsutra is a gold chain with black beads and is an integral part of the Hindu marriage. It is part of the custom where the groom puts it around the bride’s neck accepting him as a partner for life and the bride proudly wears from that day as a sign of her marriage.
  • Maang Tika: This is a piece of jewellery which adorns the forehead and adds to the beauty of a lady. The maang tika is also a sign of marriage as per the Hindu tradition. The modern maang tika is made in beautiful and delicate designs to suit the taste of the modern women and has now become a mandatory piece of ornament for all women.
  • Payal: The payal is worn by women around the ankles and has trinkets attached to it which make a very pleasant sound when they move. It is made in simple thin chain designs or elaborate broad pieces as may suit the person wearing it.
  • Hathphool: The Hathphool is a beautiful piece of jewellery worn on the hand which has five rings for the five fingers attached to a centre piece and is tied around the wrist. It is generally worn by the bride on the day of the marriage or for some formal occasions.
  • Armlets: Armlets are worn on the arms as adornments traditionally with the design of a snake though there are many other designs also. Originally, armlets were only made in silver, but with the changing times, gold armlets have become very fashionable.
  • Waist Chains: Waist chains are primarily worn with a saree to accentuate the waist of a lady. From delicate three layered gold waist chains to elaborate belt style chains, they have managed to garner a distinct place in the gold jewellery collection of women.

Conclusion

Gold is a precious metal and a luxury commodity with great value which adds to the asset of a person or family and is passed on from generations to generations as a gift of honour. Though it is less affordable for people in the low income group, it is a prized possession for all. It not only enhances the beauty when worn, but is also a status symbol and some of the gold ornaments have deeply embedded significance in the Indian culture. All in all, it is worth all the money that you pay and much more as the value of gold has always seen a vertical growth upwards.

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