Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Which one is better...well, it depends really!

People and friends ask me, is Kundan better or Polki? I, acting all like a pro, arch my eyebrows, straighten my back and try to speak with a British accent, you know, just to sound serious and all. And then say like its the most obvious answer, "It depends."

Now now, I don't want to confuse or anything, but really it depends on your taste. Before, we discuss that, let's get cracking on what is Kundan and what is Polki. So, here goes lovelies:

Kundan: Receiving a huge patronage during the Mughal era, Kundan soon took over the jewelry of choice amongst the Kinds and noblemen in India. It's has been regarded as one of the oldest forms of jewelry making in India, and is a method of gem setting wherein a pure gold foil is inserted between the precious stone and its mount. The way its done is that the jewelry piece is first shaped by specialized craftsmen, and then holes are cut in the metal to place the precious stones like diamonds, emeralds, rubies, etc. When the stones are to be set in the desired position, lac is inserted in the back to place them perfectly in their place. But, if just the lac is to be used, then it would be visible from the front, therefore, Kundan, a highly refined gold foil is used to cover the lac, and then the precious stone is pushed into the Kundan.

If you have noticed, Kundan really goes well with Meenakari work. Usually, a Kundan necklace or earring or ring would have meenakari work in the back. Hmm, so what is Meernakari? Well, its a method of jewelry making that involves enamel. Let's see some Kundan pieces:

Stunning, right?

Now, onto Polki

Polki: It is the same thing as Kundan. Yeah, that's right. Only difference is that Polki is an uncut diamond. It's setting is the same as Kundan only that is made of uncut or untouched diamond, which is why it is wayyy more expensive than Kundan. Ofcourse, these days we get glass polki, which makes the jewelry style affordable, and both you and I can rock some really unique pieces. Here are some pics:

So, if you ask me, which one - Kundan or Polki? I would still say "it depends" and trust me it depends on the moolah factor!! :)


{images courtesy various Jewelry websites}

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