What is the meaning of Nagas / Nakshi jewellery and how are they made?

Nakshi / Nagas Jewellery have been around for a very long time and this particular art form is quite rare due to the intricate and difficult curves and shapes that have to be hammered to get that appropriate shape

It is an art of the highest level as our artists sculpt a simple sheet of gold into Gods, Goddesses and Fairies & Mythical creatures. Nakshi Jewelleries are unique as no two pieces turn out alike, this means the Nakshi/Nagas Jewellery that you own (or will own) is that it is  “Totally unique, Totally you”.

Traditionally, “Nakshi” (नक्षी in Hindi) means carving and Nagas (நகாசுவேலை in Tamil) means intricate / ornamental work. Nagas/ Nakshi jewellery are a part of temple designs and originate from southern india and has existed from ancient times through the 21st century. As the meaning goes, in the making of these jewellery pieces, each step involved is very delicate and important for a purpose of its own. Below we have images from our work room that will give you a visual ideology on how Nagas and Nakshi Jewels are designed and brought out as fine jewellery.

First we make a rough sketch of the design on paper and then sketch the same on the gold sheet. With close detailing, our artisans bring them to a solid state of beauty and value that can be added to the jewellery. Nagas/ Nakshis possess its own style, beauty, and ethnicity regardless of your choice of utility and age. Each step of this design has +1 level of design complexity like – sketching, carving, engraving, and then filing to perfection. 

After sketching out on the sheet of gold, the sheet is then hammered out as to show the complete design and the major features (say for instance the facial outline, curvatures of the hands & legs of deities, key adornments like the garland, pedestal etc). After hammering the sheet, the real outlook and its scope of transformation can be judged approximately. An artisan who is extremely skilled makes it a point to deliver the best and sharp work.

Just like in any art, the face forms the soul of the jewel. Immense care is taken to see that the facial features come out as good as possible. Our experienced artisans make this possible. The happy, sharp, and the beautiful outlook of the design and the efforts is what heightens the value of the jewellery at the end.

Once the Nakshi work is over, the next step is to cut the excess portions of the gold sheet.This may sound like a simple task, but this is one of the crucial steps as even a single wrong cut would lend the entire effort to waste. Let’s say if the portion near the deity’s hair is cut by mistake, it would affect the symmetry on the other side, hence the face and ultimately the entire artwork. Once the cutting is over, the next step is closing, since the gold sheet that’s used needs to be thin in order to enable such detailed Nakshi work, the rear portion needs to be close to add strength to the piece. The thickness of the gold sheet may vary, the larger the piece, the thicker the gold sheet to close the rear portion. Once the closing is done the rough edges would be smoothened for finishing and finally the jewel is cleaned and polished, followed by a special antique polish if required to give the jewellery the exotic finish.

Now that you know how a Nakshi jewellery is made, don’t you feel like adding one to your personal collection? Drop into check out our unique Nakshi / Nagas Jewellery Designs to make your divine choice.