The Thaali, often known as the ‘Mangalsutra’ in other Indian cultures, holds an integral place in Tamil weddings. This sacred necklace, tied by the groom around the bride’s neck, symbolises the marital bond and the couple’s commitment to each other. Choosing the perfect Thaali is a significant task and involves several considerations. Here are some tips to guide you in selecting the ideal Thaali for your wedding.
Understanding the Symbolism
Each Thaali carries unique symbolism rooted in Tamil traditions and customs. The traditional Thaali has 3 elements: a gold disc (Thaali Kodi), the sacred thread (Manja Kayiru), and the patterned pendant (Pathakkam). Understanding the significance of each component helps in making an informed decision.
Decide on the Design
The Thaali design varies based on regional and community customs in Tamil Nadu. Some families prefer the traditional designs with deities or symbols like Shiva Lingam or Goddess Meenakshi, while others opt for more contemporary, minimalist designs. It’s essential to decide on the design that best reflects your personal style and cultural heritage.
Quality of Gold
Thaalis are traditionally made of gold due to its timeless appeal and auspicious connotations. Ensure that you buy your Thaali from a reputed jeweler who can provide a guarantee of the gold purity.
Choosing the Thread
Traditionally, the thread used in a Thaali is yellow or red, dyed with turmeric (manjal), signifying prosperity and fertility. Nowadays, it’s common to replace the thread with a gold chain after the wedding ceremonies.
Custom-made Vs Ready-made
While many jewelers offer a range of ready-made Thaalis, you might consider a custom-made piece for a personal touch. This allows you to create a unique design that holds personal significance.
Deciding on a budget beforehand can make the process easier. The cost of a Thaali can vary depending on the weight, design intricacy, and the price of gold at the time of purchase.
Jewelry shopping for weddings should ideally start a few months before the wedding. If you are opting for a custom-made Thaali, give enough time for the jeweler to craft and make any necessary adjustments to the piece.
Before purchasing, ensure that the Thaali carries the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) hallmark, a guarantee of the purity of gold in India.
Choosing the right Thaali is a beautiful journey that marks the start of your marital life. Whether you opt for a traditional Thaali that echoes the past or a modern design that resonates with your personality, the essential thing is that it represents the love and commitment shared between you and your partner.