Saturday, January 3, 2009

Pink Saturday - Pink bangles

Pink Saturday - Beverly, at the blog "How Sweet the Sound" hosts Pink Saturday. Let the color pink inspire you.

During our visit to Artesia, sometimes known as "Little India," I bought these pink metal bangles. They are bright hot pink, with gold-colored glitter and little mirror chips pasted on them in patterns. They are cheap things - the asking price for a stack of four dozen was $15. I bought half a stack, and then gave away a dozen to a friend. Even still, the glitter and clash and sparkle of the remaining dozen catches the eye when worn - and the ear, as they delicately tinkle when you move.

The word "bangle" comes from Hindi. It is related to bangri or bangali, which refers to its shape - a ring around the arm. "Bangle" may also be related to bungri, which means "glass."

Indian girls buy glass bangles for all occasions, in colors that match their outfits. Special wooden racks are sold to display them safely. Most glass bangles, or kanch-ki-choodi are made by Muslim craftspeople in the city of Firozabad, in north central India, or in the city of Hyderabad, in Pakistan.

Firozabad, in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh is famous for its glassworks. Glass of all kinds is made here, including light bulbs and bottles and jars - but also beads, bangles, chandeliers, decorative wear.

Bangles are made in sizes, from tiny ones for little girls to extra large ones for larger hands. You're supposed to wear the smallest size that fits you - small glass bangles are less likely to break. When I shopped for glass bangles in the Bangle Bazaar in Artesia, the shopgirl sized me as a 2.8. The glass bangles are stored beneath a table holding CDs. I sat down on the floor and pawed through the stacks and boxes of glass bangles - although there were fabulous colors and varieties, it seemed like everything was a 2.6.

I finally found this package - they are black and gold, and quite elegant. There are two fancy bangles in the package, as well as skinny bangles decorated in three different patterns. Price? $9.

Since medieval times in India, bangles have been a symbol of marriage. Women wear bangles at weddings and give bangles as wedding gifts. The saying goes that a honeymoon lasts until the last wedding bangle breaks. When a woman is widowed she symbolically breaks her glass bangles.

Women's craft collectives in India adorn boxes, picture frames, other objects with colorful shards of broken glass bangles.

Glass bangles are delicate, and break easily. I broke this one trying to put it on. I really think I should have bought a size 2.10 instead. Bangle-lovers advise using lotion on your hands when trying to put your bangles on or take them off.

If you like the idea of glass bangles, you can go to this website. They have instructions for measuring your size, and selections of bangles in all sizes and colors.

The price is right, so why not give it a try? Sparkle for Pink Saturday!


Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

Good Morning G and Happy Pink Saturday. I used to wear bangles all the time but never do anymore. Now....thanks to your post...I am going to look in my jewelry drawer and pull them out. Happy New Year. ~ Lynn

Beverly said...

Glennis, this was so interesting. I am a long time lover of bangles. Thanks for sharing.

Happy Pink Saturday.

KathyR said...

Large hands + small wrists = no bangles for me. Although my grandmother used to have this wonderful jade one with a gold hinge. Wonder what happened to it?

Smilingsal said...

I learned so much about bangles. Thanks for sharing. Happy Pink Day.

Cheri @ Blog This Mom! said...

Thanks for that and for the link. The Disney Channel was running a little spot on bangles narrated by a little girl and her sister who collect them. Sparked our interest. We don't watch much TV around here, but the holidays gave us time and opportunity for lazy moments and for instigating interest in bangles. The timing of this post is perfect!

erin said...

What a fascinating post! I love all of the lovely wedding traditions associated with the bangles. Thank you so much for sharing! Happy Pink Saturday!

phd in yogurtry said...

Fellow lover of bangles, tho I don't own any at the moment. I've traded in my bangles for beads. Thanks for the history and learning. HappyPink!

Susan said...

My first pink Saturday....Happy Pink Saturday!

Pretty pink bangles

Donna @ Party Wishes said...

What an inertesting post. I never knew the different sizings of bangles. Thanks for the link! Happy Pink Saturday!

Gary Rith Pottery Blog said...

My wife has a box of the glass ones, and from time to time they get shaken and another one bites the dust.... ;^)

Ellen said...

I just love the bangles, and thank you for the history lesson. :)Ellen

Vintage To Chic said...

Wonderful post, I love bangles and own many.
Happy pk.

Gabriela said...

Happy Pink Saturday!

These are fantastic! Love indian stuff, especially their dresses for the hot Toronto Summers!

~ Gabriela ~

imjacobsmom said...

Hey thanks for the interesting information! I used to wear bangles when I was younger. Now I work in the dental field so it's hard to wear them to work. They sure look pretty though. Hope you are having a Happy pink Saturday! ~ Robyn

CC said...

Now I just hafta go looking. Yours are so pretty and the post so interesting, I just have to find some of my own..:). Happy Pink Saturday and have a wonderous week.

Riet said...

Thank you for telling about the bangles. I love them

dana said...

Happy late Pink Sat!!

My goodness, G, you always write the most informative posts!!! I had no idea about the great background of these wonderful bangle bracelets!! Thanks for sharing that info with us!

Thanks to your post on "cyclamens", I took a photo of one the other day (it's pink) and I KNEW what it was!I think I impressed folks with "did you know there are tons of varieties of these cyclamens and did you know someone wrote a book all about them?" :) See, your great shares have quite an impact!!

Thank you for your comment on my 100th post---you are NOW in the drawing for my giveaway!

Have a great week! Dana

Joy said...

I've never been a bracelet or bangle-wearer but these are tempting!