The evolution of Jhumki (earrings)

I don’t know about you but when I think about Jewelleries the first thing that pops up in my head is Jhumki. Not many people can relate to that term. Jhumki is an earing that has a shape of a bell. I remember ever since I was young, during any traditional events my amma used to put the Jhumki on for me. This Jhumki is a traditional golden jewellery which looks something like this.

Every Tamil Brahmin women from the early 80’s and 90’s should have adorned this or possess a pair. I am one of them.

Why the name Jhumki?

The word ‘Jhumki’ refers to the traditional bell shaped earring design of India. The design has hanging decorative elements and is loved for the distinctive ‘jingle’ of these hanging elements.

The name Jhumki was chosen to represent the timeless beauty of jewellery that emerged in ancient times and has managed to endure and cross cultures from the East to the West.

Some  women, especially in the villages, wear these Jhumkis on a daily basis. Those earnings are much smaller and light weighted. The reason behind wearing them on daily basis is not only for beauty but it shows to the public how much they can afford to give as dowry for their daughters wedding. I actually never knew this fact until I questioned them.

These earrings originated  in a set called “Temple/Bharathanatyam Jewellery”. These specific jewelleries are made for Bharathanatyam.

These are some of the jewelleries worn

In this photo, this is the complete, compulsory set of accessories worn, on top part of the body, during Bharathanatyam

Hand adornment and rings are optional

 Traditionally, gold or gold plated and combination of red, green, white pearls and gold Jhumkis are worn. Nowadays, one can get them in all colours and designs.


 Here are some modern types of Jhumkis for your view.

This is also very traditional shape but modernised with its coloured beads and stones

This one has a Rajasthani design with flare tinsels beads

Taste of a keralite

Traditionally, there were Gold, now gold plated

Multi-coloured..not one of my favourites

Enough of Gold and White


The jumkis that you have seen so far are smaller bells

These are bigger bells but they are not heavy to the ears

Shobana has proved that you can dance with such large earrings 🙂

Jhumki that is inserted in the ear hole and has a chain that hooks onto the hair

A beautiful snow white pearls with stones set

These are a fraction of designs that I’ve chosen to show on my blog. There are millions of designs in the market of Indian Jewellery.

Jumkis are attached to bangles as well.

 “Accessories are important and becoming more and more important every day. They can completely change the look of an outfit, and women like the idea of having a wardrobe that’s versatile. For instance, a strong piece of jewellery can make a simple outfit look elegant.” – Giorgio Armani

Accessorize comfortably. Don’t over bling bling.




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