Rakhi-the thread of love and protection:
I do not know of any Indian festival without at least one element of design entwined into it. Rakhi is no exception. In fact it is so laden with crafts and designs that with changing fashion and market new avatars of rakhi keep coming.
The sister ties a rakhi on the right hand of brother and brother is thus bound with love to protect the sister. The history of rakhi is told here.
Today, rakhi is also market and convenience driven.
I live in a metro city. So the work and distance to my brother’s place had me tie rakhi to him on Sunday already. But my daughters tied rakhi to my husband (his sister stays too far away, on her behalf) today.
The Chinese are always so eager to penetrate any and every market. They are already into our rakhi festival. Indian markets are full of made in china rakhis.
Our film industry does not remain far behind. In kid’s rakhi there is always an element of advertisement. Hanuman rakhis, Jadu or Ganesha my friend rakhis (films released or to be released) become the most popular too.
Rakhis originally made with colorful threads have taken many embellishments with it. From beads, jari and zardosi to stone, diamonds and even swarovski crystals and gold, silver designs are woven with threads. In the small scale industry of rakhi making, now big gold and diamond brands also want to have a say.
Generally brothers sport rakhis but in few casts (Marwar-Rajasthan) woman too wear rakhis. Today we too are tempted to wear rakhis. Not only we sisters get promise of protection we get fabulous gifts from brothers too.
A few; Types of rakhis.
And if you are smitten by rakhi, you can make one on your own: a few DIY projects for how to make rakhis.
thali (dish) decoration with rakhi
(Rakhi images courtesy chennaibazaar, homeindia, indiagiftsportal).