Ancient Greeks and Romans wore bracelets to signify power and authority! But...
India is known for its beautiful and elaborate costume jewelry, so it’s no surprise that Bollywood and Indian cinematography is no different. From old Bollywood films to recent blockbusters, jewelry plays a starring role on the big screen, birthing iconic trends and looks that are replicated both by the everyday Indian woman as well as actresses walking the red-carpet.
But what jewelry moments stand out the most? In the following blog, we’re going to take a look at some of the most famous gold earrings worn in Indian cinematography, from Ram Leela to Veere Di Wedding. Let’s take a look!
The role of jewelry in Indian cinema
Before we take a look at some of our favorite fashion moments from the big screen, it’s important to discuss the role played by jewelry in Indian cinema. In the same way that Hollywood films and TV shows can set everyday fashion and beauty trends (for example, the iconic “Rachel” haircut popularized by Jennifer Aniston in the 90s) Bollywood cinema influences not just everyday Indian style, but Indian bridal style too. After all, there’s no better occasion to show off your jewelry pieces than your wedding day, and many Indian brides take inspiration from their favorite on-screen stars.
Most famous gold earrings in Indian Cinema
So, which on-screen characters have had the most memorable jewelry moments in Indian cinema? Here are our favorites:
Jodhaa Akbar (2008)
Considered a real magnum opus, the 2008 film Jodhaa Akbar featured some of the most intricate and beautiful jewelry pieces seen in Indian cinema. Starring Bollywood favorite Aishwarya Rai, the actress could be seen wearing gorgeous oversized pendant jhumka earrings, paired with an elaborate gold choker and maang tikka. The actress also wore oversized floral design pendants, set with beautiful glittering diamonds and teamed with a gold Nath.
Ram Leela (2013)
Ram Leela, Bollywood’s adaptation of Romeo and Juliet, was an instant classic upon its release in 2013, and although the film’s story is a tragic one, actress Deepika Padukone still inspired many everyday Indian women with her elaborate costume jewelry worn on screen. From her oversized Bali earrings to the intricate sun and moon earrings worn by the actress as she played character Leela, many Indian brides took inspiration from this passionate – if ultimately tragic – romantic tale.
2 States (2014)
A romantic comedy starring Arjun Kapoor and Alia Bhatt, 2 States was a huge hit in 2014 – and one of the main reasons for its success was the starring role played by the actress’ jewelry pieces! From her intricately detailed Jadau jhumka earrings to her statement-making maang tikka, Bhatt’s character Ananya inspired many Indian brides with her classic, yet daring style.
Bajirao Mastani (2015)
Based on Nagnath S. Inamdar’s Marathi novel Rau, the 2015 film Bajirao Mastani starred Deepika Padukone and Priyanka Chorpa in key roles – and let’s not forget the starring role of the actress’ jewelry pieces! While the film explores the toils of forbidden love and against-all-odds passion, the on-screen mise-en-scene includes some of the most beautiful gold jewelry pieces in Indian cinematic history, including beautiful oversized gold earrings. According to studio sources, all the pieces in the film were made with pure, 24 carat gold, and set with a variety of rare gemstones, including Burmese rubies and diamond polkies. While 24 carat gold might look great on the big screen, we still prefer 22 carat gold earrings for everyday wear!
Veere Di Wedding (2018)
Released in 2018, Shashanka Ghosh’s film Veere Di Wedding featured perhaps the most iconic and game-changing pair of earrings in Bollywood cinema: actress Sonam Kapoor’s long, oversized jhumka earrings featured endless gold charms, diamond detailing, and vibrant green emeralds. The earrings were so popular that many Indian jewelers began selling replicas, and many Indian brides now emulate the same look for their big day.
Starring actress Deepika Padukone as Queen Padmavati, the 2018 film Padmavat depicted a story of love, war and obsession- and just like the other films noted above, the jewelry worn onscreen played a starring role. Given that the film takes place in 13th century Afghanistan, the jewelry that Padukone wears is very much in the traditional style of the era; she can be seen wearing oversized gold pendant earrings with rubies and diamond detailing, as well as oversized jhumka earrings paired with Nath and elaborate gold chokers. While these may not be everyday wearable pieces, they still add an elegant, regal touch to any bridal look, and will be sure to have nonetheless inspired many soon-to-be Indian brides, especially those in the Punjab region who prioritize red in their wedding attire.
Gangubai Kathiawadi (2022)
Onto a more recent Netflix release, actress Alia Bhatt inspired many Indian everyday street styles with her titular role in the film Gangubai Kathiyawadi, a crime drama about a young Indian woman deceived into prostitution. In the promo tour for the film, Bhatt can be seen wearing gorgeous gold and emerald jhumka earrings, as well as oversized pendant earrings with sapphire and diamond detailing.