Make heads turn with designer jhumkas in gold, diamond, terracotta, paper…

Vidya Balan wears them and so does Deepika Padukone. Closer home, Kavya Madhavan and Rima Kallingal don them too. Nearly everyone seems to be sporting jhumkas (jimmikis) – kundan, metal, terracotta, quilled…

Says costume designer Sameera Saneesh: “Jhumkas have always been a favourite with Malayalis. The trend, however, started picking up recently with leading actresses, especially in Bollywood, wearing them as part of their style statement. Jhumkas are the current flavour of the season as fans ape the style mantras of their favourite celebrities. Movies such as Chennai Express and Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela popularised the jhumka as the lead actress Deepika Padukone sported them. Meera Jasmine also wears a pair in Ladies and Gentlemen, a movie I worked on recently.”

Sameera feels teenage girls and women go for jhumkas because they suit all pockets. Right from Rs. 20 to several lakhs, jhumkas are being sold by all, from footpath vendors to jewellery designer boutiques.

However, Bindu Mathai who runs ‘Aakaar’, a jewellery design centre in Bangalore, says jhumkas were not ‘in’ when she first introduced terracotta jhumkas to the market in 1995.

“People started buying them once they worked out the price factor. The fact that they come in various patterns: square-shaped, conical-shaped, paisley-shaped... and in a plethora of colours to suit the outfits in the wardrobe, appeals to customers. These earrings are for all age groups. Women in their forties enjoy wearing them as much as college going girls,” says Bindu.

The umbrella-shaped danglers are a current rage among brides. Megha Mariam Varghuse wore a golden pair for her wedding while bride-to-be Susan Abraham is on a quest for the “perfect jhumka” for her big day.

Biju Nair, Assistant Manager, Bhima Boutique, Thiruvananthapuram, finds ‘cocktail jhumkas’ being snapped up by Gen Now. “These are contemporary designs in gold that one can wear for parties. Most patterns come studded with stones. Diamond jhumkas are also popular as are ‘antique’ jhumkas,” he says.

Saraswathi Vasudevan who runs classes in terracotta jewellery says people are flocking to learn to make their own danglers in either terracotta or paper. “People enjoy designing their own pair as they can customise it to suit their tastes,” she says.

Calling this fad for jhumkas a “retro trend”, designer Sakhi Thomas, says jhumkas suit ethnic and Indo-Western looks women like these days. “Jhumkas look great when paired with saris, Anarkali styled kurtas or with t-shirts and full skirts,” she says.

She predicts that the trend might last a year or two. “But those who have stocked up on those jhumkas need not fret. The trend will return; after all jhumkas are timeless,” she says.