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by SARBANI NYC November 25, 2019 3 min read

Polki necklace by Jewellery by Astha JagwaniTo find jewelry that weaves the traditional with the elegant, the natural with the polished, look no further than Polki jewelry.

This centuries-old style is made with uncut natural diamonds mined directly from the earth. Polki diamonds do not undergo lab enhancements; instead, they are set in the jewelry as is. Designers continue to use this style in earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and hair accessories. If unique is what you’re looking for, Polki is your answer, as no two pieces are alike.

How is Polki Jewelry Made?

The process of creating Polki jewelry is very intricate and tedious and requires a great deal of skill by experienced artisans. The flat or uncut stones are set in 24-karat gold with a piece of gold foil set behind them, which allows the stone to reflect the light. They are then coated in shellac and the backs of the pieces are enameled.

When it comes to design, this traditional Indian jewelry comes in many different shapes and styles. Polki jewelry often features meenakari and enamel designs, but the diamonds also look great with sapphires, emeralds, and rubies.

White Lotus & Peacock Chandbalis by Jewellery by Astha JagwaniThere are also a few popular shapes among Polki jewelry, particularly when it comes to earrings: Chandbali and Jhumki. Chandbali earrings (pictured on the right) feature a double crescent moon motif, with the crescents set within each other. Jhumki or Jhumka earrings are characterized by their bell shape.

What is Meenakari?

Meenakari, also known as Meena Kari or Mina Kari, is the art of painting or embellishing various types of metals with vibrant motifs of birds, flowers, and leaves.

Polki Jewelry: Then and Now

Polki Flower Necklace set by Jewellery by Astha JagwaniEnvision a time of grandeur and royalty, a time when appreciation for painting, literature, textiles, and architecture was at an all-time high in India. That was the Mughal era, and the time when Polki jewelry skyrocketed in popularity. The traditional, regal style was a symbol of wealth and royalty.

The style has truly stood the test of time, as modern women continue to wear Polki jewelry. It is still sought after particularly by brides who want a classically elegant style on their wedding day. And with modern takes from fashion jewelry designers like Astha Jagwani, there is no shortage of stunning options.

Khushnuma by Astha Jagwani

Khushnuma, the latest collection from Jewellery by Astha Jagwani, features faux glass Polki (also known as Kundan jewelry), along with colorful stones of green, red, and blue and pearls. Any jewelry lover will appreciate the layers upon layers of stones and intricate joint work.

The word “khushnuma” means moment of joy and happiness—an apt name for the line, which is bright and festive. The designer uses traditional designs like the Chandbalis and Jhumkis combined with beautiful motifs of fish, flowers, and birds.

What is Kundan Jewelry?

Circular Stud Earrings by Jewellery by Astha JagwaniKundan jewelry uses the same technique as Polki jewelry. The main difference is the use of glass stones instead of diamonds, which makes Kundan more affordable than Polki diamond jewelry. Kundan also sometimes uses base metal rather than pure gold.

Sarbani NYC is excited to be featuring a selection of pieces from the Khushnuma collection, Astha Jagwani’s line of faux Polki jewelry, coming soon! Be the first to shop these unique, high-quality Polki and Kundan look-alike pieces when you sign up for our newsletter today.

Stephanie Chabot, Style Editor
Sarbani NYC

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