With the upcoming festival of Kaurva Chauth upon us, there is one piece of jewellery that stands out for modern married women celebrating– the diamond Mangalsutra. Like Mangalsutras, natural diamonds have long been synonymous with love and rightfully so. The best relationships, just like diamonds, are unique, strong and timeless, making diamond Mangalsutras the ultimate symbol of love and protection.
Mangalsutras have long been a staple of the Indian bride serving as a marker of marital status, evolving in design from yellow thread to what we know today as the instantly-recognisable ‘traditional Mangalsutra’. And even though we have seen designs transform over time, one thing has remained the same– it was, and still is, deeply rooted in symbolism.
Mangalsutras were believed to ward off the evil eye upon newlyweds and serve as a reminder to the married woman of her love and dedication to her husband. Although some may see that as a sign of the patriarchy, modern brides are taking their power back, recontextualising the symbolism to meet their needs. Now, it’s more about the love shared between partners, and women are looking for ways to personalise their pieces to represent that unique love through their own lens.
You might be thinking how much can someone individualise their Mangalsutra while still being true to tradition? When it comes to options, women take inspiration across cultures, blending eastern and western aesthetics. We layer our necklaces, stack our bracelets and rings. We tell our personal stories through our own individual mix of pieces. Meaning and personal expression are more important than adhering to traditional design.
So if the modern bride in you is seeking something original, take cues from these natural diamond Mangalsutra trends…
The Mangalsutra Ring
Not into wearing necklaces? No problem! The Mangalsutra ring is a perfect choice for the understated bride. Think onyx or black diamonds to represent your black beads with the ring itself symbolising eternal love and voilà- you’ve got yourself an updated Mangalsutra!
Pro tip: The best part about wearing a Mangalsutra ring is that unlike Mangalsutra necklaces you get to look at it all the time.
The Mangalsutra Bracelet
Like Mangalsutra necklaces, bracelet designs are great for the storyteller, the woman who likes to stack her pieces, or wear charms. Mangalsutra bracelets can be the best ‘in between’ option for those who are looking for a healthy balance between modern and traditional. Take style inspiration from the traditional Mangalsutra by sticking with the black beads, but personalise your bracelet to something that has meaning to you. It’s always a good idea to elevate this piece with diamonds so that you can layer with other pieces or wear it alone.
Pro tip: Wear on your left hand, similar to the way you would wear an engagement ring to sit on the same side as your heart.
The Minimal Mangalsutra
The minimal Mangalsutra necklace is your safest bet. Think thin chains worn between 18 to 22 inches, with black beads all around or a few on each side of your pendant depending on the look you’re going for. And to sit at the center, a beautiful natural diamond pendant. It’s elegant, timeless, and utterly chic.
Pro tip: Think about the rest of the jewellery you own. If you have more rose gold pieces, opt for a rose gold Mangalsutra so you can layer with your other pieces.
The Choker Mangalsutra
The choker Mangalsutra is a cult favourite. If you prefer to have an everyday piece that won’t be hidden, the diamond choker Mangalsutra is a great option.
Pro tip: Keep this simple to wear with other pieces, or go for something that has more design to it so you can wear it alone.
Jewellery: Sampat Jeweller
The Interchangeable Mangalsutra
This piece is truly for the modern woman. She needs a piece that is multi-purpose and multi-functional. Having an interchangeable center pendant allows for versatility in style but also symbolism.
Pro tip: Pick one pendant that will have your wow factor– diamonds are always recommended– and wear it for special occasions. Then choose something more subtle for your everyday life. Or pick pendants that have several different meanings to you.
This is probably one of the most rewarding routes to go down. Pick a designer you love, and build a completely custom Mangalsutra that truly represents you and your partner, whether it’s filled with symbolism or just great craftsmanship and design.
Pro tip: If you’re going bespoke, think about the symbols that represent you and your partner. Take notes from Sonam Kapoor incorporating natural diamond zodiac pendants, representing her and her husband’s signs into her Mangalsutra or designers like Ananya Fine Jewellery who’s entire collection is built off of spirituality and positive energy.